Sean King

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Knoxville, Tennessee, United States

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Rodney Johnson:

Arizona Sell State Buidings to Raise Cash

New York Times: The office building houses most of the State of Arizona’s government and was recently put on the market to help this broke state close its budget deficit.

It is looking like a pretty good deal, if the state can prove it is credit worthy.



Whole story here.

Arizona Sell State Buidings to Raise Cash

New York Times: The office building houses most of the State of Arizona’s government and was recently put on the market to help this broke state close its budget deficit.

It is looking like a pretty good deal, if the state can prove it is credit worthy.



Whole story here.

Arizona Sell State Buidings to Raise Cash

New York Times: The office building houses most of the State of Arizona’s government and was recently put on the market to help this broke state close its budget deficit.

It is looking like a pretty good deal, if the state can prove it is credit worthy.



Whole story here.

Monday, September 21, 2009

It's in the Genes

New York Times: Scientists say they have used gene therapy to enable colorblind monkeys to see red and green, possibly opening the door to curing colorblindness in people.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Kindle Version of "The Lost Symbol" Sells More Than Hard Copy on First Day of Release

At least at Amazon. Wow.

Translators announce 2011 update of popular NIV Bible

Why are there so many varying translations of the Bible?

Chapter 5 of my book offers an explanation.

Rethinking Life Expectancy

Orion Melehan: Life expectancy is the average measure of how long a child born today is expected to live. For instance, the new data suggests that the average American-born child will live to be nearly 78 years of age. But this data includes all the infant mortality deaths, diseases and the reckless activities we tend to engage in during our adolescent years. As a person ages and survives these dangerous years, life expectancy actually increases.

Based on all this, here is a statistic that I think is much more impressive than the recently released figures: A 65-year-old couple that doesn’t smoke has, according to the American Society of Actuaries, a joint life expectancy of 92 years old. In other words, there’s a 50 percent chance that one of these two people lives beyond age 92. And there’s a 25 percent chance that one of these two individuals will live beyond 97.



That's right. About 1 in 4 people age 65 today will live well beyond 95, and that's based on today's technology.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Edward Boyden Finds a Flaw With the Singularity Hypothesis

[A] really advanced intelligence, improperly motivated, might realize the impermanence of all things, calculate that the sun will burn out in a few billion years, and decide to play video games for the remainder of its existence, concluding that inventing an even smarter machine is pointless. (A corollary of this thinking might explain why we haven't found extraterrestrial life yet: intelligences on the cusp of achieving interstellar travel might be prone to thinking that with the galaxies boiling away in just 1019 years, it might be better just to stay home and watch TV.) Thus, if one is trying to build an intelligent machine capable of devising more intelligent machines, it is important to find a way to build in not only motivation, but motivation amplification--the continued desire to build in self-sustaining motivation, as intelligence amplifies. If such motivation is to be possessed by future generations of intelligence--meta-motivation, as it were--then it's important to discover these principles now.


It's a good point, and one that I admittedly hadn't contemplated before. Intelligenced is nothing without ambition, and ambition is not necessarily an emergent property of intelligence.

Oh Brother

UK Guardian: The cost of air travel must rise to an extent that it deters people from flying and to compensate developing countries for the damage it does to the environment, according to the government's advisory body on climate change.

Ticket prices should rise to ensure that carbon dioxide emissions from aviation fall back to 2005 levels and to raise tens of billions of pounds in flight taxes to help developing nations adapt to climate change, for example, by building new flood defences, the committee on climate change says.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Vitamin D:

What you need to know.

Ellen Will Be So Happy

Yoga Classes Help Lower Back Pain

It's in the Genes

New York Times: Two teams of European scientists say they have discovered new genetic variants associated with Alzheimer’s disease. The variants account for about 20 percent of the genetic risk of the disease, and may lead to a better understanding of its biology, the scientists say.

Paul Krugman Asks:

How Did Economists Get It So Wrong?


This is one of the few Krugman pieces that I find to be somewhat fair minded. He does an excellent job of noting some of the shortfalls of neo-classical economic theory, though he's somewhat less thorough in his critique of what is today laughably called "Keynesian" economics.

Even so, how Krugman could have written such an article without reference to Steve Keen's masterwork on this subject, Debunking Economics, is beyond me.

The "O" Has Lost His Mojo

Charles Krauthammer: What happened to bring [Obama's] popularity down further than that of any new president in polling history save Gerald Ford (post-Nixon pardon)?


Krauthammer explains.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Cash for Kids

Catholic Culture: Amid a projected demographic collapse that will see Japan’s population shrink from 127.6 million in 2006 to under 100 million in 2050, Prime Minister-elect Yukio Hatoyama has pledged to encourage births through government payments of $3,300 per year per child from birth to junior high school-- in addition to the $3,700 that Japanese parents are already given upon the birth of a child.