Oleg Zabluda's blog
Friday, May 18, 2012

As you watch annular solar eclipse on May 20, 2012, you've got to be in awe that after the Sun (mag -26.7) and Venus...
As you watch annular solar eclipse on May 20, 2012, you've got to be in awe that after the Sun (mag -26.7) and Venus (mag -4.7), the next brightest Hevenly body is ... the Moon (mag -2.5), which is 1 magnitude brighter then next brightest object Sirius (mag -1.5). The Moon will be illuminated by the Earth, and this is called Earthshine http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earthshine
It is easier to see during other phases around New Moon, but is happening during an eclipse/New Moon as well.

Just imaging how bright the Earth is from the Moon at that time. Ii's mag -16, i.e. 16 times brighter then Full Moon (mag -13), and sparkling blue.
For the reference, during the eclipse, from Venus, the Earth is mag -5.5 and the Moon is -1.7, brighter then Sirius. They will be 5' apart.

Let's also calculate magnitude of Sun during the eclipse. The Moon covers 0.9439^2=89% of the Sun, reducing Sun's magnitude by a whooping 2.4, making it a measly -24.3. Whoopee.

Reminder: in the cocktail "Full Moon", you have to replace vodka with gin due to planetshine, and serve wit a lemon ring, because it's an annular solar eclipse.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earthshine

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If computers had any kind of "understanding", a lot of things would be better, like spell/grammar checking, machine...
If computers had any kind of "understanding", a lot of things would be better, like spell/grammar checking, machine translation, speech recognition, etc... The problem is that we don't really know how to represent "knowledge", and not for the lack or trying. One of the easiest thing to start with, is an entity-relationship graph (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entity-relationship_model).

The very recent history of it is Freebase with 22M entities and 80M relationships (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freebase), made by company called Metaweb (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metaweb), founded in July 2005, and acquired by Google in July 2010. Now, 2 years later, Google released its "Knowledge Graph", with 500 M entities, and 3.5 G relationships, which may be a major development in this area, initially applied to search.

I have to do more research on how they collect entities and relationships, but some of recent things about it are here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microformat (not widely used, maybe because before the Knowledge Graph there wasn't enough incentive)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikidata (partially funded by Google)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AI_winter
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_machine_translation
http://schema.org/

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Solar eclipse on May 20, 2012 will be annular.
Solar eclipse on May 20, 2012 will be annular. For the eclipse to be total, one has to be closer to the Moon. Some friends of mine will go to Mount Shasta, which is almost the highest mountain in the Contiguous US at 14,179 ft (=2.7 mi = 4.3 km) , and is in the Moon's shadow. Will they be able to see totality, if they climb to the summit?

We could use sizes of the Moon and Sun and distances and stuff, but instead, we'll cheat and use Magnitude of eclipse 0.9439 from
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_eclipse_of_May_20,_2012

From data we already have at

the Moon will be ~252,000 mi away, so we'd have to be
~(1-0.9439)*252,000 mi ~= 14,000 mi closer.

Tha't's 5000x farther then the summit of Mt. Shasta. Even cosmo/astronauts at ISS are not high enough, stuck at the pathetic and disgraceful 250 mi orbit. But geostationary satellites at 22,000 Kmi will easily see totality.

What a shame. Back in 1969, Americans could go all the way to the Moon any time they wanted. Now, our bast hope is SpaceX, whose launch I'll be watching tonight 1:15 AM PDT.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_eclipse_of_May_20,_2012

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Maker Faire Bay Area 2012 interesting (to me) events
Maker Faire Bay Area 2012 interesting (to me) events

http://makezine.com/makerfaire/bayarea/2012/schedule/all/index.html

Saturday, May 19, 2012
11:00-11:20 Stringmaking Demonstration (making strings out of bark)
11:30-11:55 Light, Lasers & Illusions
12:00-12:30 Butter! Shake it and Make it!
1:00-2:00 Milkin' in the City (urban goats)
2:30-3:00 Backyard Beekeeping 101
3:00-3:20 Elements of Sculptural Crochet
3:00-4:00 Extracting Honey 101
4:30-5:30 The Happy Chicken

Sunday, May 20, 2012
12:00-12:25 Hyperspectral Imaging
12:00-12:30 Butter! Shake it and Make it!
1:00-1:30 Backyard Beekeeping 101
1:00-1:25 Autonomous Quadcopter Drones - Chris Anderson
1:30-2:30 Extracting Honey 101
2:00-2:20 Open Source Geiger Counter

http://makezine.com/makerfaire/bayarea/2012/
http://makezine.com/makerfaire/bayarea/2012/

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"Google Maps" for the Roman Empire from Stanford (Google is not involved), with directions and cost of travel, for...
"Google Maps" for the Roman Empire from Stanford (Google is not involved), with directions and cost of travel, for ships, ox carts, horse, walking, etc.. (via Alexey Goldin)

http://orbis.stanford.edu/

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There is annular solar eclipse on May 20, 2012. In preparation, you can see a simulation I did on Mar 24, 2012 :-)
There is annular solar eclipse on May 20, 2012. In preparation, you can see a simulation I did on Mar 24, 2012 :-)

Why is it annular this time? Because the Moon is in apogee (farther) during eclipse (= New Moon). And why is that? Of course, because during the previous Full Moon, it was in perigee. We called it SuperMoon, remember? Not only that, but apogee and perigee are farther and closer to Earth then usual, when they are aligned with the Sun, like now, due to the tidal forces.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_eclipse_of_May_20,_2012

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Samsung is making 25% of parts in iPhone 4, by cost.
Samsung is making 25% of parts in iPhone 4, by cost. Flash \$26, DRAM \$11.60, CPU \$8. Last week there were, still unconfirmed, rumors that Apple moved 50% of RAM purchases to Elpida.

Current iPhones come with 512MB of RAM. Current Android phones come mostly with 1GB or RAM, some with 2GB. Those are using Samsung 30nm 4Gb LPDDR2 chips, produced since April 2011. Before that Samsung was producing 2Gb 40nm.

Now Samsung started mass-producing 4Gb LPDDR2 chips in 20 nm. hoping to make 2GB "mainstream product" by the end of 2013. It's hard to say whether or not the 20nm design is what's leading to the 2GB of RAM in the Japanese Galaxy S III;

http://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/samsung-makes-a-quarter-of-the-parts-in-the-iphone-4/