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Link of the week - Scientific Computing April-foolery

 

Link of the week - Scientific Computing April-foolery


As usual, this year’s April 1 saw the web littered with pranks and jokes of varying quality. iSGTW scoured the web for the best April Fools stories related to science, computing, and scientific computing. Enjoy browsing the stories we found!

Story categories:

 

Image courtesy of Box.net

CLOUD COMPUTING

Space Computing from Box.net

It’s the new cloud computing! Interplanetary file redundancy, WarpTravel CDN to speed up file transfers, and secure file deletion via black holes are just some of the advantages of Space Computing. Not to mention the option of warming other planets instead of our own! We also dug the gorgeous website design – even if FaceBook’s Mark Zuckerberg wants to redesign the page.

Amazon’s Quantum Compute Cloud, QC2

Using the “spooky action at a distance” property of quantum entanglement, QC2 beta will allow users to replicate QC2 instances across multiple time zones. Other companies have already announced features compatible with QC2. Vembu Labs, for example, announced a new feature for their StoreGrid product, called StoreGrid Entanglement. StoreGrid ET “allows transfer of data as quantum energy from the client over to the server without traversing the intervening space by manipulating the data states probabilistically,” according to their announcement.

Google Docs enhanced cloud storage

For only $0.10/kg, upload anything to the Google cloud. No more need to worry about losing your keys or bus passes!

 

Image courtesy of Sophos.

COMPUTER SECURITY

Security through distraction

Sophos announces an important new path to security: security through distraction. By flooding your network with distracting materials, malicious hackers can be delayed from their goal by an average of 1.5 hours. Sophos has even done an extensive study of potential distracting materials, to determine what will serve as the most effective distractions. Their very entertaining video will explain the details of this new security strategy. Watch it, then participate in their contest!

New browsing protection feature

F-Secure Labs introduces an important new feature in browsing protection: Rick-Roll detection and blocking. “Never again will our customers unknowingly visit the infamous video of Rick Astley performing ‘Never Gonna Give You Up,’” says the announcement.

 

INFORMATION SCIENCE

New Google Books effort

This blog post, by Paolo du Flippi of Locus Magazine, gives a detailed description of the events surrounding a new effort by Google Books to digitize the lost library of Alexandria. The successful completion of this project will yield tremendous amounts of data and information for analysis.

Curatr, the ideal research note and references organizer

Easily managed by a graduate student in only two hours per week, this program uses all the shiniest new technologies, free, grant-funded for sustainability, and automatically manages links, metadata, and migration. Although it is in perpetual beta, the first full edition of this program will also come with a free pony, and your choice of tenure, or a sabbatical!

 

Image courtesy of Science Magazine.

SCIENCE CULTURE

Science and Nature merge

ScienceNOW reports the exciting merger of scientific publishing giants Science and Nature. The new combined publication, which will be called Scientific Nature or Natural Science, will make use of new Web 3.0 technology. Blogger Joshua Rosenau comments.

Fermilab April Fools edition

Read about the Fermilab computing division’s new and innovative method for clearing service tickets by burning, the new stocks for disciplining traffic violations, and more in this special edition of Fermilab’s daily newsletter, Fermilab Today.

Math Professor’s shadow rebels during Flatland lecture

During a lecture about Flatland, Biola University math professor Matthew Weathers’ shadow began to act up quite oddly, much to the amusement of his students. Watch the video for yourself!

Review: Research on unsuccessful attempts to treat writer’s block

This humorous treatment gives an excellent if wordy overview of current research into the treatment of writer’s block.

 

Image courtesy of Discover Magazine.

SCIENCE

The gene for gullibility

Discover Magazine reports the discovery of a gene, WTF1, responsible for gullibility. The gene is linked to the inferior supra-credulus, a region of the brain that is likewise linked with various markers of gullibility, such as likelihood of being Rickrolled.

CERN discovers paleoparticle

This bizarre paleoparticle, discovered thanks to the recent jump to energies of 7 TeV, is particularly repulsive, likely because of its’ lack of beauty and charm quarks. Physicists have nicknamed it the neutrinosaurus in part due to its prehistoric origin.

Hull York Medical School launches xenobiology course

The UK General Medical Council, which oversees the training of doctors in Britain, has HYMS to trial a course entitled ‘Xenobiology and Xenophysiology in the Twenty-First Century.’

LHC II to run in London’s Circle Line

The Independent reports that CERN has approached the London Underground about running a new collider in the 23 kilometer tunnel of the Circle Line in downtown London.

- Miriam Boon, iSGTW

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