Monday, August 5, 2013

Popular Mechanic September 2013

I was reading Popular Mechanic Magazine for September 2013. I found a few interesting articles:

Of Language Grammar

They compared Chimp and 2 year olds language faculties to see if there's any difference. The conclusion is that 2 year olds can understand grammar, where is Nim the Chimp does rote memorization. That's an interesting test and I suppose perhaps humans can feel superior to chimp. My question is: How about comparing adults to Google translate, or Watson? As I understand it, Watson trumps human. Does that mean we, in general, are less than 2 bit overgrown transistor?

Resurrecting Extinct Species

The science is there now to create or re-create extinct species, even without existing creatures. They talked about Jurassic Park dinosaurs, of course. My question is: If indeed it is possible to create non-existing creatures, how many of these scientists are tempted to create Balrogs? Or maybe Orcs. The way I see it, just splice some Gorilla genes into, oh I don't know, rhinoceros? There, you have orcs.

Ice Maker in cars

Built in ice makers? I thought most people just bring their ice box. Hey, I want microwave and ice maker in my car. My very own chuckwagon.

Drone in the Sky

I think it's time that Google stops building self driving car and starts building self-piloting air planes. The challenges should be minimal. No jaywalker or stray deers, after all. Sell them to discount airliners or something. I'm sure they'll be happy to skip training qualified pilots. Imagine that, no more missing airports due to distracted pilots!

Origami Kayak

A cheap, lightweight, foldable, plastic kayak? I want one! Or maybe I want Pak-boat. Or perhaps, cardboard? Yeah, a cheap disposable kayak. Make the frames reusable, but the skin as shrink-wrap. I hope it lasts.

Hacking your education

There's also an article about how you can read lessons from MIT classes on-line, for free! That's something interesting. Get the lessons, buy the textbooks, and do a CLEP test. Portfolio on website. Degree in one year! I like that. Now, who's hiring and what kind of classes do you want me to take? ;)

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