land-of-kain

(umi'n no kuni)

Linux Undelete with Grep

Alex Clemmer with a nice little trick to recover deleted text files under Linux: Just use grep on /dev/mypartion. Seems obvious once you heard it... and will even work on encrypted partions with /dev/mapper/mycrypt.

IRIS: Solar Flare in Detail

Io9 points to a NASA report on the IRIS satellite (2013), recording a solar flare up close in the ultraviolet spectrum: Looking at a sunspot from the side, some coronal loops visible, then the solar flare (size: about 4 earths) erupting before the accompanying CME (coronal mass ejection). In related news: Io9 on the earth's magnetic field via ESA Swarm (3 satellites).

Busier than Ever

The Atlantic examines the development of leisure (USA only) -- overall work hours have declined, but there is one exception: A very long education leads to more work than previously in history, and only shorter educations lead to more leisure. Related: Business Insider writes on the perception of time by different cultures; and Quora discusses common management mistakes.

Input Device: Hover-Swipe Keyboard

Microsoft Research has built a prototype keyboard with built-in touchpad: Between the keys, infrared sensors (96 in total) track any hovering fingers, and a machine learning algorithm determines whether and which swipe gesture has occured. In unrelated news: Why you should not interrupt a programmer (comic).

Luke Arm: Production Ready

Slashdot points to a Makezine article on FDA approval of the DEKA ("Luke") arm, meaning that the prosthetic arm is production-ready (not only a DARPA prototype). It reads EEG signals and has 12 pre-programmed modes for basic grips, e.g. "insert and turn key", "open marmelade jar", providing highly specialized manual actions.

SSH Kung-Fu

The Tyblog summarizes useful SSH operations, among them: Reverse SSH to overcome NAT'ed hosts; SSH tunneling to work around restricted port ranges; and mounting remote filesystems with sshfs.

On Latency: TCP vs UDP

The 1024 monkeys blog writes about TCP vs. UDP networking for games: While implementing custom persistency with UDP is always reliably faster, TCP may be already good enough -- if the slightly flawed congestion control strategy can be tolerated.

Fluid Layouts with HTML&CSS: Flexbox

With HTML/CSS, creating a fixed-size sidebar and a flexible main page on all browsers including mobile has always been possible but painful (wtf,html&css). Now, CSS3 flexbox (w3c) finally reinvents BorderLayout, and even adds flexible ordering.

Strategy Guide: Life is a Game

Io9 links to Oliver Emberton's strategy guide to the adventure game called "life": Keep your stats (health, energy, willpower) full, stack your skills for superskills and choose missions wisely. Sweet.

PillCam: Colonoscopy Camera

Engadget and Motherboard link to a Boston Globe report on the PillCam, used as a traveling camera thru the colon. Alternative: Wired variants like the 1cm3 micro camera by Awaiba and Fraunhofer (Engadget and TechCrunch report).

Throwing: Knuckleball Physics

Io9 reports on the erratically curved "knuckleballs" thrown by baseball pitchers: Avoiding spin, the seams on the ball create aerodynamic friction in a semi-random manner. Alan Nathan (U of Illinois, USA) provides research.

Body As Ecosystem

Io9 links to a Ben Arthur/NPR animation on the body as ecosystem, called "the human microbiome": 10x as many bacteria/fungi cells than human cells, specialized bacteria e.g. for upper/lower arm skin, immune system, and of course digestion.