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The Oil Drum: Sustainable Energy January 29, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in Environment, General Interest.
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Long article at The Oil Drum about what it will take to have sustainable energy.  Includes a brief, but telling, discussion about the politics behind our current policies.



Follow the Bouncing Ball…. January 29, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in WoT.
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I was following some links (started at Protein Wisdom) about the Chemical Weapons in Iraq, and came across a comment that lead here. (Iraqi Bloggers Central)  That article, on who sold what to whom during the ’80s, had a comment that lead to The Free Republic.  The comments there, starting with comment #80, present a scenario, involving Iraq, Iran, Libya, and North Korea.  I haven’t read it in detail, but it sounds intriguing.  I’ll follow up with more later.

Kenneth Stein: My Problem with Jimmy Carter’s Book January 26, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in Judaism/Israel.
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In an article on The Middle East Forum, Ken Stein, former Middle East fellow at the Carter Center, puts together a more formal, and quite devastating, critique of Carter’s book, Palestine:  Peace not Apartheid.  It’s pretty comprehensive.  He basically accuses Carter of either intentionally misquoting key figures in the ongoing Middle East conflict(s), or outright misrepresenting what they are saying.  Stein extensively footnotes the article (50 notes for what amounts to a 5-7 page treatise), in a strong effort to back up his own interpretations with facts.

One piece, in particular, strikes me.  Here’s a quote:

But Carter is often wrong. Throughout Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, he allows his premises to supplant the facts. His book contains no footnotes, citations, or sources. It contains an appendix and a series of maps, some of which he seems to have mislabeled and taken from Clinton-era negotiator Dennis Ross’ The Missing Peace: The Inside Story of the Fight for Middle East Peace.[22] The maps are reconfigured to support Carter’s statement that Israel’s best offer in the final months of Clinton’s presidency was to divide the West Bank into three non-contiguous areas, thus reinforcing Carter’s claim of apartheid.[23] Carter dismissed the allegation that he appropriated the maps, saying that he had never seen Ross’s book.[24] If true, Carter ignored the most important and detailed memoir yet published on 1990s-era Arab-Israeli negotiations.

I think this is one of the most damning statements in Stein’s article.  The simple fact that Carter claims he did not read Ross’ book speaks volumes about the integrity of his work.  How could he possibly write a book about the failed negotiations between Israel and the PLO, and not go to one of the primary sources?!  This is absolutely mind boggling to me and, frankly, raises doubts about the statement itself.  Carter had to have at least looked at Ross’ book.  There’s no way he couldn’t have.  Which brings us back to the plagarism charge raised a few weeks ago.  Did Carter lift the maps from Ross’ book, and intentionally distort them?  I’m inclined to think he did, and is now trying to cover his tracks.

Carter continues to dig himself deeper and deeper into an incredible hole.  Why anyone of any integrity would listen to and believe anything he has to say, is beyond me.

Update: Here’s a post by Cathy Young on Carter’s appearance at Brandeis. Seemed to be a pretty rigged appearance. The questions were pre-selected, and no follow-ups were allowed. And Alan Dershowitz was not allowed to appear on stage at the same time. Nice setup, if you can get it. Carter’s been completely unwilling to debate anyone on his book, which shows, at the very least, moral cowardice on his part. Yet he accuses Jewish universities of ‘blacklisting’ him. Putz.

More Neural Nets January 18, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in Artificial Intelligence, Master's Thesis.
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Following up on my older post re: the Neural Network FAQ, here’s a site that discusses NNs with Java code. I’m starting to pull this stuff together. I need to get the ARTMap code working inside of the MIDLet that I’ve written. Once that’s done, then we can start sampling data and testing against the real world. Then we start getting the server fleshed out and putting together some basic ‘bots that can work with each other and the server.

Airport Connection Issues January 18, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in Apple/AAPL.
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Article in Apple’s Knowledge Base about reconnect issues that Airport has when coming out of sleep.

A Spot in the Sun January 18, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in Math/Science.
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Here’s an old article/picture of the Space Station and Shuttle outlined against the Sun.  Pretty awesome stuff.  Click on the picture to get a close-up.  The picture was taken from a telescope here on Earth.

Interview with God January 18, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in Spirituality.
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Slideshow.  Good stuff.  The last page in particular.

TMF: Summary of Q1 ’07 AAPL Results January 18, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in Apple/AAPL, Investing.
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The Motley Fool has a summary of Apple’s Q107 results.  It is interesting also for its links to more indepth discussions of the various pieces of information:  income statements, margins, balance sheets, etc.  Good reading.

iPhone, Redux January 11, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in Apple/AAPL.
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There’s been a flurry of activity regarding the iPhone over the last couple of days. In an addendum to my earlier post, I need to retract one point. It appears that the iPhone is going to be a closed system. As of now, Apple will not be allowing third party apps to run on the device. There are no hints of any kind of dev kit, and Apple has publically stated that only their apps will be allowed. I’m hoping this is only short-term. I think one of the ways to make the iPhone a hit will be to actively push third-party widgets. Especially given how easy it is to make these widgets. That’s been one of the drawbacks with other platforms.

We’ll see.

Animated Map of Iraq from DefenseLink January 11, 2007

Posted by nukemhill in WoT.
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Here’s an interesting map of Iraq.  It illustrates the rate of hand-overs to the Iraqi military of the various provinces.  A couple of things come to mind:

  1. It is glaring that Anbar and Baghdad are outside of the fold, still.
  2. How seriously can we take it when our military is saying that the Iraqi military is ‘taking the lead’ in these various provinces?  How secure does that make them?

What are we supposed to believe about this?  I’d like to think we really are making progress, but the stories of corruption and extremism that are coming out about the Iraqi police really make me wonder how reliable the military is.

From the bottom of the page:

Responsibility For Security Backgrounder

The Selection Of A Province For Transfer
To Iraqi Control Is Based On Four Criteria:

Threat Level: U.S. and Iraqi commands examine the threats to the security of a province.  If Iraqi Provincial authorities can ensure security and domestic order through the normal use of local police, the province is ready for transfer.

Iraqi Security Forces: The Iraqi Security Forces in the province are studied to determine if their training, equipment and capability are capable of protecting Iraqi citizens.

Governance: The governor must be capable of overseeing security operations.  A Joint Operations Room must be capable of coordinating activities.  An Iraqi Ministry of Defense and Iraqi Ministry of the Interior intelligence structure must support the Iraqi Police.

Multi National Force – Iraq: MNF-I must be capable of reinforcing Iraqi Security Forces if necessary. Coalition Forces will continue to help coordinate civil reconstruction projects.  MNF-I will conduct activities in conjunction with the policies of the Iraqi Ministry of Interior and Iraqi Ministry of Defense.

Time will tell, if we have enough….

<Hat tip:  Jonah @ The Corner>