Tag Archives: big-tech

MIT On Climate Change

Every year MIT has a Technology Day on its alumni reunion weekend where faculty discuss what they’re working on.   These are consistently interesting, and I’ve written about them before: The Oceans Are Dissolved Information and Print Your House and … Continue reading

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Nothing Has Ever Been Manufactured in Space

I happen to own something that has been to space – a laptop bag made partly from the orange nylon of Soyuz re-entry parachute: A Montreal company, Everquest Design, went out to Kazahkstan in 2003 and recovered the parachute from … Continue reading

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Mad Science #4: Geo-Engineering With Nukes

Nuclear devices, what are they good for?  Almost nothing, it turns out.   They’re close to useless as weapons, since the goal of war is domination, not destruction.  The nuclear powers have been in dozens of wars since 1945, and have … Continue reading

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Mad Science #2 – Zapping ICBMs with Nuke-Induced Radiation Belts

Another great recent source of crazed science stories is Sharon Weinberger’s thorough and refreshingly skeptical history of the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency, The Imagineers of War.    DARPA has been all the rage for the last few years because … Continue reading

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The Engineering of Biology at MIT

One of the big reunion activities at MIT is Technology Day, a series of lectures from faculty done shortly after commencement.   This year the theme was Synthetic Life, and the talks were just as creepy and interesting as you might … Continue reading

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How Did Wind Get So Cheap?

Rather surprisingly, wind power is now the cheapest form of electricity in the US: This comes from the tree-hugging socialists at  Lazard Asset Management.  Unsubsidized wind comes in at $32 to $62 per MWh, depending on the site.   Natural gas … Continue reading

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When Modeling Goes Bad – “Weapons of Math Destruction”

The political modeling that I talked about in the last post now affects most decisions that institutions make with respect to individuals.   This is nicely described in in the recent book Weapons of Math Destruction by Cathy O’Neil.   She has … Continue reading

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