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Suspension of Disbelief: The Imitation Game

Cross posted from Coffeefied, Operafied, Fluffified, Beglittered. Alan Turing is my hero.  He is the intellectual progenitor of my science, a war hero who never held a gun, a rallying cry for the injustices perpetrated against LGBT folk, and an all-around amazingly smart yet tragic person. Some time back, someone …

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Science Sunday: With Liberty and Internet Access for All

I believe in the internet.  I mean, obviously it exists, that’s not the issue.  I believe that unfettered access to different people and ideas is the best defense against tyranny, whether governmental or the thought policing that religions engage in.  I believe that access to a global commerce network allows …

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Science Sunday: Bleeding Hearts and the Tribulations of Initializing Variables in C

These are troubled times indeed.  The Heartbleed bug is causing wailing and gnashing of teeth among all administrators of servers, and Bruce Schneier, the man who taught Chuck Norris to divide by zero, has declared this an emergency of 11, on a scale of 1-10. Internet protocols do not have …

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Science Sunday: Go to the Computer!

Today in news that makes me happy, a computer named Crazy Stone is playing Go so well it can defeat the Japanese Go champion!  This is probably the sexiest supercomputer since Watson.  Though I don’t quite get the way the article is framed, that is, as a competition between machines and humans, …

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Science Sunday: Biometric Security and the Impermanence of Fingerprints

Recently, on my spring break (which now that I am not a student, I can take) I met a delightful older nurse who told me many fun stories about patients with bubonic plague and ebola.  That’s not important.  The important thing was that she also told me that at the …


Fair Lady of Computer Science who Kicks Ass

In honor of women’s history month, I am going to gush about how much I love Frances Allen.  Partly, because I’ve met her.  Well, I’ve attended a lecture she gave, which is not the same thing.  Also, because she has won the Turing Award, the highest honor the computer science …


On the Uselessness of Mathematics and Resultant Magical Oracular Godness of Computers

I’ve been thinking about mathematical education a lot recently.  Mostly because my sister is professing math at a college at which many students believe and state that they do not need math because all they are going to do in life is work at the mines.  I find this sad …

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Science Sunday: Denial of Service Attacks and the Cost of Security

Last week, Skepchick, Freethoughtblogs, and Feminist Frequency all went offline due to distributed denial of service attacks.  Those are nasty.  It’s an easy attack to launch while being difficult to impossible to defend against without adding lots of costly time-consuming security measures to victimized servers. The internet, as we know …