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Entries from February 2003

Suggestible

February 26th, 2003 · 1 Comment

It’s amazing how suggestible the human mind is. Well, not quite amazing, but still impressive. I’ve just been over at a friend’s who’s a fan of psychological magic tricks, and he managed to successfully predict two different cards chosen by myself and another person. When I say ‘predict’, of course what really happened was that [...]

Tags: psych

Freedom Evolves

February 25th, 2003 · No Comments

Just finished reading Freedom Evolves by Daniel Dennett. It took me only four days to accomplish this, which is a great improvement from previous philosophy books that took me several weeks to finish (or I never ended up finishing them). This presents several possibilites, which I’ve listed in increasing order of likelihood:
1) My IQ has [...]

Tags: book · philosophy · psych

Geeks With Books

February 24th, 2003 · No Comments

Geeks With Books – a nice little article about what it’s like to work in a used SF bookstore. “I never count on having Philip K. Dick books. They tend to stay around for about twenty minutes. When I shelve his books, I worry about losing a finger since they sell so fast.”

Tags: book · sf

Webcams for schools

February 24th, 2003 · No Comments

Putting webcams in classrooms to catch problem pupils – seems like a great idea to me, you wouldn’t believe the number of parents who think their kids can do no wrong. As for privacy concerns, I think maybe some kind of key escrow agency might be a good idea, wherein (say) at least two out [...]

Tags: edu · politics · tech

24 Episode 3

February 24th, 2003 · No Comments

Some brief thoughts: Today’s episode on BBC3 was an improvement over the last two – in short, far less Kim and far more Jack. Much more dramatic tension, although I am a bit puzzled about why they haven’t included more subplots. This stuff about the groom being a terrorist doesn’t count, it doesn’t seem to [...]

Tags: tv

Trailers as a cultural indicator

February 23rd, 2003 · No Comments

While watching my Back to the Future DVD for the umpteenth time, I decided to go and check out the original theatrical trailer. Since the film first opened in 1985, the trailer was suitably cringeworthy, what with all the flashing LEDs, arrays of ‘futuristic’ buttons, shots of the Delorean’s profile and the silly dialogue:
V/O: How [...]

Tags: film · spec

Front Page

February 21st, 2003 · No Comments

I was feeling a little depressed and annoyed today when I was told that my entry for the college Science Essay Prize hadn’t won. So, to cheer myself up, I submitted it to the Kuro5hin community website and to my delight, my essay about synaesthesia has met with their approval and been posted on the [...]

Tags: adrian · neuro · psych · science

Wishlist for Mars

February 21st, 2003 · No Comments

The Speaker Wishlist for the Mars Society 2003 Convention – Chris Isaak? ‘Any of the cast of Survivor’? Arnold Schwarzennager? (sic) Any female astronauts? I hate to think of who made this list, and how they did it. And in any case, isn’t it a bit late to be signing up speakers for a date [...]

Tags: conference · mars · silly · space

The Drugs Don’t Work

February 21st, 2003 · No Comments

Over the past two days I’ve had an excellent two-part workshop in my neuroscience course on addiction, covering what we know about the causes of drug addiction at a molecular, cellular and cognitive level, reward pathways in the brain and possible treatments, vaccines and cures for drug addiction. Definitely one of the most thought provoking [...]

Tags: cambridge · future · lecture · neuro · science · spec

They’re back

February 20th, 2003 · No Comments

The Borg To Appear On ‘Enterprise’ – a lot of fans have been wailing and gibbering about this development, but I’m actually quite optimistic. Enterprise has seen quite a lot of average and below-average episodes so far, but I’ve also seen some pretty decent episodes as well, and they’re only halfway through the second season.
This [...]

Tags: sf · tv