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Comment Re:Ignorant summary writer. (Score 1) 176

There are around 6 billion humans, so this would make the total water consumption equal to around 16 times the human population.

I started out writing this post on how this number is way too low, but it's actually more reasonable than you might think. I do think it's off by an order of magnitude (but I thought it was off by at least 5).

Assume water consumption is roughly proportional to mass. The rest is based on wiki Biomass article. From the "domestic biomass = 700 mill tonnes = 1% of earths biomass" estimate a total biomass of 7*10^10 tonnes. Say a third of that is from animals (there are a lot of small critters in the sea, so maybe), so we have around 2*10^10 tonnes animal biomass. 6 billion humans = 1*10^8 tonnes biomass, so we're talking the equivalent of 1200 billion humans, ie, around 10 times your estimate. So that would make the two quantities even closer.

Comment Re:How is this random? (Score 1) 101

The interleaving is assumed random. I believe that the deck is randomly divided into 2 stacks, and then we sequentially take cards from each of the stacks, choosing the stacks with probability in proportion to the number of cards in each. I would actually take a look at the paper if you're interested - the result is not that esoteric. What's nice about the proof is the very clever idea (something about certain sequences of cards), which makes the proof itself pretty accessible.

Canada Election Result Bad News For DMCA Opponents 311

An anonymous reader writes "For those with a stake in the opposition of Jim Prentice's C-61, the Canadian DMCA, this previous week's election results will be displeasing. The Conservative Party, which promised to reintroduce the DMCA if elected, gained 19 seats this election, mostly at the expense of the flagging liberal party, a mere 12 short of a majority government. The increase in Conservative representation, as well as the relatively low profile of this issue amidst other, more pressing concerns, increases the likelihood that the son of C-61 will come to fruition. On a positive note, the number of MPs supporting Geist's copyright pledge has increased to 34. Given the Conservative Party's historic disregard of public opinion, however, the efforts of the copyright-pledge MPs will have to rally the full opposition across three major parties in order to defeat the bill. A mere 12 MPs now stand between the Canadian public and the MAFIAA's hungry maw."
It's funny.  Laugh.

WTF? NC Offers to Replace 10,000 License Plates 467

beadfulthings writes "In light of recent discussions about the Internet habits of the older generation, it's comforting to know that in North Carolina, up to 10,000 license plates containing the potentially offensive 3-letter WTF combination will be replaced by the Motor Vehicles division at no cost — if the owner of the vehicle finds the plates offensive. As reported on Winston-Salem's television station WXII, the MVD was alerted to the problem by an irate 60-year-old technology teacher who'd been clued in by her grandchildren. The article includes a helpful slide show of twenty Internet acronyms every parent should know. The article doesn't include any information on how you could actually apply for a WTF license plate."

Bill Gates Chews Out Microsoft 836

s31523 writes "All of us have one time or another been completely frustrated by certain Windows usability issues, and in many cases our experiences have driven us over to Linux, or kept us there. For anyone that has ever been frustrated, you will be happy to know you aren't the only one. After reading this leaked Microsoft memo from Bill Gates back in 2003, you will surely have more insight into why Vista is a complete disaster due to Microsoft not learning anything from their experiences from XP."
Puzzle Games (Games)

Submission + - Can we find a man with just a photo and a name?

MikeJ writes: "Mind Candy, the makers of Perplex City, are testing the power of the Internet by asking that very question; they have recruited one of Earth's 6 billion residents — a man named Satoshi — to participate in this experiment.

It has been suggested that we are each only five to seven people away from any target in the world. Someone, somewhere, knows Satoshi — so we must track these people, and thus Satoshi, down using word-of-mouth communication. People from over 80 countries are already participating in the hunt, with more joining every day. Can you help find Satoshi?"

Coping with Exam Panic Attacks? 207

UniGirlBot asks: "I am a distinction / high distinction student who normally doesn't have any major levels of stress during exams. Today I managed to have a major panic attack during an exam on databases and ended up leaving the room in tears about halfway through a 3-hour paper. This panic attack was an absolute first for me and I now have to begin the special consideration procedure, which I am grateful exists. For the record, I did study enough and the course was something I enjoyed doing. Does anyone out there have any advice on what I could do stop this from happening again, please?" If you've been in this position, how did you recover?

Allergy-Free Kittens Produced 276

An anonymous reader writes "San Diego-based company, Allerca, said that using a technique known as genetic divergence, it has 'bred the world's first hypoallergenic kitten, opening the doors and arms of millions of pet lovers for whom cuddling a cat has, until now, been a curse ... After identifying the genes of kittens with proteins that provide less of a reaction in humans, they selectively bred litters over several generations to end up with an allergy-friendly super cat.' The company says its customers are expected to take delivery of their $4,000 hypoallergenic kittens in early 2007."

Bellagio Fountains Recreated with Mentos and Coke 220

Trip writes "What happens when you combine 200 liters of Diet Coke and over 500 Mentos mints? It's amazing and completely insane. The first part of this video demonstrates a simple geyser, and the second part shows just how extreme it can get. Over one hundred jets of soda fly into the air in less than three minutes. It's a hysterical and spectacular mint-powered version of the Bellagio Fountains in Las Vegas."

Nintendo Revolution Renamed 'Wii' 966

Retroneous writes "The Nintendo Revolution has had its name changed to the Nintendo Wii." Confirmation on the official Revolution site. Update: 04/27 16:32 GMT by Z : More information available from a Gamasutra article: "New details on the disc format have also been revealed: 'Instead of a tray, a single, innovative, self-loading media bay will play both 12-centimeter optical discs used for the new system as well as Nintendo GameCube discs. Owners will have the option of equipping a small, self-contained attachment to play movies and other DVD content.'"

Journal Journal: School...

After a brief bout with the flu, I'm back at school, which really suffers in comparison with Harvard Summer. Everything's pretty much the same, from the administration on down. There's a gaggle of new teachers, but I don't have many. They seem pretty good.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Travel

Well, after a nice summer, I'm back in Bangalore. I visited Aditi this morning, had a nice time unpacking, and now I've got to do a damned English assignment. I had had it scheduled for the plane, but - you know how it is - I slept through both flights. Perhaps I should be more accurate - I slept and played Advance Wars 2. That game is amazing.

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