Equality Artifacts and Image Quality

In support of the right to marry the one you love, today the equals sign swept facebook, and a teachable moment about lossy image compression has come in its wake.   The first The image started as a perfect set of squares.  Here’s what the SFR of a perfect edge looks like:ogsfr I don’t have the original image, I had to recreate this in GIMP.   From the very first person that uploaded this, the image began to degrade. Continue reading Equality Artifacts and Image Quality

Confessions of a Gamer

I’m coming out… I’m a Gamer.

You can find Starcraft being taught at UC BerkeleyThis study shows that playing real-time strategy (RTS) games improved “cognitive flexibility” in those who played it.

I’m not ashamed of being a gamer any more… but only because I’ve made it to the top of my Starcraft ][ silver league bracket:

Screenshot2013-02-01 22_54_10

A good game can teach one to optimize for every single possibility, to close every possible gap, to maximize every resource and to utilize all surpluses, to minimize any waste. You’ll still get whopped from time to time, which is important because it’s the losses that teach you much more than the wins, if and only if you really analyze why you lost, and come up with corrections to prevent that means of losing later. Things start to work better for you in the long run. These are lessons that can be applied to real life. I believe that some games, when properly applied, can actually sharpen the mind.

Better living through Starcraft!

Thankful

Some people are doing 30 days of thanks, but I’m doing this one post.

I’m thankful for science and math which have given me so many gifts, I am thankful for higher education, for my university, and for all those who advance reason and knowledge.

I’m thankful to have found a path where am able to dream big, to have lofty dreams and to work my ass off to achieve those dreams.

I’m thankful for the Chinese who are so great at helping to make amazing things with us, I’m happy to collaborate in working with them inside this global village.

I’m thankful for the freedom that I have to speak my mind without being censored.

Continue reading Thankful

I Endorse Barack Obama

Taking a political stand isn’t something that is easy for me to do.  By writing this, I don’t intend to offend or alienate any of my friends, family, co-workers or customers who might support Mitt Romney. But I feel that this is something I have to say.  Although I don’t have the energy to cover issues of tax policy and health care, I’ll try to explain some of the other reasons why I’m supporting the re-election of Barack Obama. Continue reading I Endorse Barack Obama

Venus and Jupiter Converge

Ones mind often perceives stars as infinitesimally small point rather than something that has angular size.

But gazing at these planets, these seem more to be discs than pinholes. Or maybe it’s just atmospheric distortion and flare light.

Check out this amazing photography by Patrick Cullis

Venus, Jupiter and the Flatirons from Patrick Cullis on Vimeo.

Overpriced Prescription Drugs: Completing The Circle Of Blame – @ExpressScripts @AnthemHealth

I still don’t fully understand why my insurance caused my prescription drug costs to go up 83%.

Today I talked with a representative from express scripts, the company that services drugs for Anthem Health Care.  The representative repeated ad infinitum that their pricing agreements with specific pharmacies were “proprietary information”, but seemed to state that that if the rates from the pharmacy were lower than the insurance company dictated rates, that I should end up paying the lesser of the two prices, not the greater.  That makes sense to me, but that isn’t what ended up happening. Continue reading Overpriced Prescription Drugs: Completing The Circle Of Blame – @ExpressScripts @AnthemHealth