Now gluten-free!

Friday, July 31, 2009

AMC to Air Remake of "The Prisoner"

I loved watching reruns of the 1960s series The Prisoner as a kid. Naturally, I'm very excited to see the miniseries remake, starring Ian McKellen and Jim Caviezel.

Looks interesting!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Robot Revolution

The prospect of super-intelligent machines posing a threat to humanity's existence has always been a popular theme in science fiction. But some experts fear it may actually be more science than fiction. From the New York Times:
    Impressed and alarmed by advances in artificial intelligence, a group of computer scientists is debating whether there should be limits on research that might lead to loss of human control over computer-based systems that carry a growing share of society's workload, from waging war to chatting with customers on the phone.

    Their concern is that further advances could create profound social disruptions and even have dangerous consequences.

So, might we expect a robot revolution in the near future? It seems to have already begun in Sweden according to this report:
    The incident took place in June 2007 at a factory in BĂ„lsta, north of Stockholm, when the industrial worker was trying to carry out maintenance on a defective machine generally used to lift heavy rocks. Thinking he had cut off the power supply, the man approached the robot with no sense of trepidation.

    But the robot suddenly came to life and grabbed a tight hold of the victim's head. The man succeeded in defending himself but not before suffering serious injuries.

The bright side to this report is that it appears the revolution is only in the Maximum Overdrive stage. It will probably take several years before it reaches Terminator or Matrix proportions. After that, watch out.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Ants Take Over the World!

That's what scientists are saying:
    A single mega-colony of ants has colonised much of the world, scientists have discovered.

    Argentine ants living in vast numbers across Europe, the US and Japan belong to the same inter-related colony, and will refuse to fight one another.

    The colony may be the largest of its type ever known for any insect species, and could rival humans in the scale of its world domination.

    What's more, people are unwittingly helping the mega-colony stick together.

    Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) were once native to South America. But people have unintentionally introduced the ants to all continents except Antarctica.

    These introduced Argentine ants are renowned for forming large colonies, and for becoming a significant pest, attacking native animals and crops.

    In Europe, one vast colony of Argentine ants is thought to stretch for 6,000km (3,700 miles) along the Mediterranean coast, while another in the US, known as the "Californian large", extends over 900km (560 miles) along the coast of California. A third huge colony exists on the west coast of Japan.

To borrow from Kent Brockman, I, for one, welcome our new insect overlords. I'd like to remind them that as a trusted online personality, I can be helpful in rounding up others to toil in their underground sugar caves.

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