GeekSpeak for 2015-02-28

Live Long and Prosper, Net Neutrality

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FCC’s awesome net neutrality ruling, good bye to a geek icon, PIfs a file system using Pi for storage, debate the blue/black/gold/white dress and handle other tech news of the week.

RIP Leonard Nimoy

We miss a role model for rational thinking, valuing the community over the privileged few, and a total hottie. We loved him not only for Star Trek, and watching his evolution of thinking in I am Not Spock and, later, I am Spock ; but for that consideration of the unexplained, the TV series In Search Of.

Dear FCC: Thanks for Listening to Team Internet! | Electronic Frontier Foundation

..the FCC’s new rules forbid ISPs from charging Internet users for special treatment on their networks. It will also reach interconnection between ISPs and transit providers or edge services, allowing the FCC to ensure that ISPs don’t abuse their gatekeeper authority to favor some services over others.

Another important aspect of the Net Neutrality ruling is forbearance, the process by which the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) expressly commits NOT to apply certain rules. … Forbearance is crucial to net neutrality because it helps to limit FCC regulation.

New 5-Mile-Around Hyperloop Test Track Will Cost $100 Million

a group called Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, unaffiliated with Musk, announced plans this week to build a 5-mile test track for a Hyperloop in the planned community of Quay Valley, California. Construction on the project, estimated at $100 million could begin as early as next year.

More on the Hyper Loop available at Multitasking Australians Thrown for a Hyperloop – GeekSpeak Episode

Disney drops $4.8M in Boy Scouts funding over anti-gay policy - Boing Boing

Disney has dropped the Boy Scouts of America from the roster of charities eligible to benefit from its Voluntears program, through which the company donates money to charities when its employees do volunteer work in their communities.

Pi File System

No, really. It’s hilarious!

Petition to make "Hella" the prefix for 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 - Boing Boing

A petition to make Hella- the official SI prefix for 10^27, for measuring things bigger than Yotta- (the prefix for (US) billion trillion). For instance: ‘the sun (mass of 2.2 hellatons) would release energy at 0.3 hellawatts.’ It would also come in handy for eventually measuring Internet traffic and US national debt.

  • Correction: yotta is actually 10^24

Wikipedia has a nice list of Metric prefixes

HUGE black hole discovered

a team of astronomers was stunned to discover what is, in galactic terms, a monstrous baby: a gigantic black hole of 12 billion solar masses in a barely newborn galaxy, just 875 million years after the big bang.

The monster they found (depicted in this artist’s impression) is roughly 3000 times the size of our Milky Way’s central black hole. To have grown to such a size in so short a time, it must have been munching matter at close to the maximum physically possible rate for most of its existence.

More information available Here

Samsung privacy policy warns users of smartTV spying on them

Samsung has warned users that their smart televisions have the capability to pick up spoken sensitive information and transmit it to third parties. Many people on social media have pointed out that Samsung’s voice command televisions resemble the technology in the novel “1984.”

Lenovo's Superfish Update

The events of last week reinforce the principle that customer experience, security and privacy must be our top priorities. With this in mind, we will significantly reduce preloaded applications. Our goal is clear: To become the leader in providing cleaner, safer PCs.

The Blue/Black/white/gold dress

Do you see a blue or white dress?

Wired article about the science of seeing

XKCD handles it via comic

Buzz Feed dealing with the traffic

Amazon reviews of the actual dress

What is going on?

Take a look at these two tiles:

They are actually the same color. (cover up the line between them to see.) – your mind isn’t doing what you think it is doing.

Amazon wants to fit trucks with 3D printers to speed up deliveries | The Verge

Late last week United States Patent and Trademark Office published a patent filing by Amazon Technologies, Inc. which outlines a method of 3D printing on-demand within mobile manufacturing hubs. According to Amazon, such a setup could save the company time and money on several fronts.

Listener Donna writes...

To geeks
I first saw it on my mini tablet and it was obviously white and gold and thought it was a big joke.
Asked my husband: white and gold.
Then all the internet stuff. I still could not see blue- blue ish but not
blue. BUT on my proper computer screen, it looks light blue and brown, until I stand up and look at the screen, white and gold or lean back, dark blue and black.
So I’ve seen it three sets of colors.
Cheers D


This episode of GeekSpeak is dedicated to Leonard Nimoy, a well known actor, director, musician, photgrapher and writer. Known for his character Spock of the Star Trek universe, an icon of rational thinking and moral action.