Sunday, April 29, 2012

Can We Trust Google?

Here is an interesting info-graph showing some information about Google. Some stuff is obvious, other is not and you may want to check it out. It is pretty obvious we all use Google almost daily for whatever we need. Whether it is too look up something through it's search engine, or look at pictures; Google is a daily part of life for some. Just today I was checking out insurance rates for my car, my current one has been increasing and they wont even provide a clear cut answer as to why. Google was right there for me when I needed to perform that search and even when I applied to Universities, Google was right there. The only question is for what other uses can Google use all of our searches besides the obvious. Surely when someone looks up an insurance quote, at a credit card,or even a cat laughing can you truly say you trust Google with that info.

Mother, Can I Trust Google?
Hosted by: Online Background Check Guide

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

MIT Prediction: World Economy will Collapse 2030

The following news may make you feel a bit uneasy but non the less it is important for people to be informed. A study called The Limits to Growth is looking very depressing to say the least. It was commissioned by an international think tank called the Club of Rome and during the year 1972; the report found that if civilization continued on its path toward increasing consumption, the global economy would collapse by the year 2030. Population losses would follow, and things would generally fall apart all over the world, painting a grim picture at what might happen in the future.
The study was and still remains controversial, with economists doubting its predictions and saying they cant agree with the notion of imposing limits on economic growth. Australian researcher Graham Turner has examined its assumptions in great detail during the past several years, and apparently his latest research falls in line with the report’s predictions, according to Smithsonian Magazine. The world is on track for disaster resulting in turmoil that would cause nothing short of global pandemic, as stated by the magazine.

The study was initially completed at MIT of which it relied on several computer models of economic trends and estimated that if things didn’t change much, and humans continued to consume natural resources at the current pace we do now, the world would run out at some point. Oil will peak (some argue it has) before dropping down the other side of the bell curve, yet demand for food and services would only continue to rise as is natural with the rapid population increase. Turner says real-world data from 1970 to 2000 tracks with the study’s draconian predictions: “There is a very clear warning bell being rung here. We are not on a sustainable trajectory,” he tells Smithsonian. It isn't hard to see how we are using so much resources that the planet simply cannot continue to sustain itself. 

Well the big question now is that if this is impossible to fix? Well the answer is No, according to both Turner and the original study. If governments enact stricter policies and technologies can be improved to reduce our environmental footprint, economic growth doesn't have to become a market white dwarf, marching toward chaos and utter destruction. But just how to do that is another thing entirely and knowing the lack of political order and change, this will be the greatest challenge to face our close future. 

MIT, posci

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Spring Brake at Last

Spring Brake is finally here for me after a long and stressful midterm examination period. My college workload has been so extraneous that I haven't had the time to do anything to relax, all my time has been devoted to studying and just working out. The good thing is all my efforts paid off as I got 90+ on all my exams and I feel pretty damn good about my current standings in my courses. The university life can be stressful but that feeling goes away as soon as your grades reflect your best efforts.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Getting Close for a big decision

Well it seems like that time is getting closer to make that big college decision; my major. I spoke to my counselor and went over my current standings and have 59 credits. This means I have to decide and announce what my major will be and man it is tough. My college is a business oriented one so my initial perception was to go into finance. As of now it seems that is still my current objective and thus my major but I still have some uncertainty. Basically I will be applying for the business school part of my college which then will be all a business section of courses to take. I hope my decision is the right one and choosing Finance as major will lead me down the right path.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

University exams and workload

Well it seems now everything is beginning to get serious around my classes and courses in general. My first psychology exam went pretty good, got decent grade but that's something I will work on to improve even more. In the next coming weeks I will have exams in 4 classes ranging from economics to computer systems and I can say economics is my major worry. Its that hard its just Im not a fan of economics at all. Last semester in my college took Micro-econ and it was kinda boring and didn't really garnish my full interest to do good. Sounds like I was just lazy in general but I really didn't like that class. Looking at this semester I have to take this Macro-econ class a bit more serious and just get it over with. On a side note I recently found out my college was ranked in the top 15 for most stressed out and unhappy students in the nation. It was pretty funny considering we ranked  as more unhaDesignppy than most military academy's. I blame it on the requirement courses to follow your major, I mean seriously why would we require anthropology or black studies if we are gonna major in Finance or mathematics. Combine that with a busy New York City life and the fact we always have to be on the move, surely doesn't help our cause.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

College Life

College keeps on passing by day by day and its getting closer to that time when I have to make my decision on my major. My lectures and classes are all made up of prerequisites at the time completely unrelated to my "intended major" which is that of finance. It just sucks that I have to take close to 20 classes that barely have anything to do with that career path. For one it offers grand knowledge on a wide variety of topics but then again the stress and workload piles up on you and your not even taking your career path classes. Hopefully everything works out and the payout at the end is worth it from then on.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

University Research- Parkinson's Disease

Researchers have made a breakthrough with the human debilitating disease, Parkinson's. For the first time ever, researchers have created human brain cells from the skin cells of patients who carry a mutated gene related to the disease. This means researchers can now track and follow exactly how this mutation, in a gene called parkin, causes the disease in about 10% of the patients. This is a major and incredible breakthrough because it will allow researchers to study brain cells affected by in real time mode. Animals that do not have this gene cannot easily develop similar like symptoms, so researchers must use human neurons for the study, but it’s generally difficult almost impossible to get live human brain cells to study as such a case might be. These further findings are a major breakthrough in University Studies and are continuing the future of humans.

["Jian Feng and colleagues at the State University of New York-Buffalo took skin cells from 4 patients, including 2 healthy patients and two patients carrying the mutation. They induced the skin cells to become pluripotent stem cells, and then differentiated them into neurons specifically, mid-brain neurons that create dopamine, called dopaminergic neurons. The loss of these neurons, which are the brain’s primary source of dopamine, causes symptoms like loss of motor control.
The gene indirectly harms those neurons. Here’s how it works: parkin regulates the production of an enzyme, monamine oxidase, which in turn keeps dopamine at bay. Mutations do not control this MAO, and the MAO essentially runs amok, causing harm to the dopamine-producing neurons."] Source: PopSci, NY State University Research.

Hopefully major breakthroughs arise from this technological breakthrough and some sort of vaccine is the result. During my psychology lecture class we saw the effects of this horrible disease and it was sad to see the people affected by it. It is reassuring to know colleges and University are ongoing with their research time to find a cure.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

College Books- Online Access Keys

After having spent a couple hundred dollars on textbooks for classes thus far, I must say this is a growing business to further get even more money out of students now with their so called "online key" access codes. Last semester during my economics class, I was required to pay $90 for an access pass to use an online system just for that semester, meaning the online code would work for only that semester and cost even more than the textbook itself. To much dismay my professor frankly said if we dont purchase this we would fail the course. I had no option and had to shelve out money to pay for something that I was basically renting for a couple months. Fast forward to this semester, yet again I had to purchase more online access keys. I had to do this for two classes and each one feels like a big business model that wants to somehow make everything be limited as opposed to just buying a simple textbook. Whether it is to stop people from reselling books or the fact that textbook publishers are more money hungry its apparent the college student is ever more part of one big business with their college. Whats even worse is that most of the time all these online keys to access online partitions for the course come bundled only with the newest editions of the texts. What does this mean? You are going to pay more for a book that just changed its cover but has the college online key with it. 

Friday, February 3, 2012

DARPA and Their Fancy Contact Lenses

When you think of contact lenses you can just expect something someone puts in their eyes for either a fashion statement or for better eye sight. Well DARPA has taken the time and money to invest into something really crazy but extremely incredible as well. Simply put, Augmented-Reality Contact lenses are the thing DARPA has taken into account. As mentioned from POPSCI and DARPA, "The augmented reality future we were long ago promised has been slow to come around, perhaps restrained most by the basic biology of our own eyes, which are unable to properly see detailed images placed very near the pupils. But via technology developed in part with a certain government agency, Washington-based Innovega has created a unique contact lens technology that allows the eye to focus on images projected very close to the eyes as well as objects in the real world beyond." POPSCI 2012- Lenses.

This technology is somethings straight out of the future almost reaches the heights of saying it as human engineering. DARPA is looking to use this incredible peripheral and implement it into the military for various uses. I see the tremendous ability something like this could bring to the military but also even in everyday life of people. Medical uses are also a possibility and who knows, with the right university or college researching this further, this can help various eye sight issues.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Starting New College Semester

On Friday, I started my college semester and was able to experience two classes out of the five I will be taking this semester. Psychology and Philosophy are those two courses and I must say I am already excited about this semester on the very the first day. My first class on Friday was Psychology and this course is really something extraordinaire in terms of knowledge and things one can learn. I am a Finance major so most of my classes make up in terms of straight to the point number applications and other uses of math. This class seems like a fresh breathe and as if it will lead me to a region I have yet to see and get knowledge from but I am excited about the various ways the human mind works and its amazing capabilities. Philosophy was my next class after psychology and once again I was blown away on the first day by the professor. This sort of class is the one where deep thinking and provocative answers and reposes are welcomed. I must say I am looking forward to this semester in college and getting my education in a region different from my intended major of finance and one thing I can say already is that anyone in college should definitely take at least an intro course in these to subjects and be ready to get your mind blown away.

Monday, January 23, 2012

MIT's Nano-Bandage- Stop bleeding instantly

The risks of bleeding is tremendous and when it is left uncontrolled and untreated, death is the only viable outcome of such a thing. When it is on the battlefield the risk increases tenfold due to the sheer intensity of the environment and the limited time to act fast and treat wounds. But thanks to MIT and its break through in nanoscale technologies, the chance of dealing with bleeding can be brought under control almost instantly and even stop bleeding altogether. As the pros at MIT put it, ["That agent, called thrombin, is coated onto sponges that can be easily packed by soldiers and field medics (or civilian medical personnel for that matter) and shaped to fit just about any kind of wound. Those pre-coated sponges are a pretty big improvement over tourniquets and gauze, which are limited in their ability to stop every kind of bleeding. Tourniquets obviously can’t be used on many parts of the body (the neck is a good example), and other glues and chemically treated bandages designed for dressing battlefield wounds come with their own complications and shortcomings."] - MIT,popsci Labs
This is a molecule view of Thrombin 

This technology can be used to great lengths and save a soldiers life instantly in the warzone, a place where time and skill can be the difference between life and death. Back home the usage once again is tremendous in all forms, hopefully insurance companies wont be picky about it and just do their job. It wont cost that much since it will also be a bio-designed kind of sponge that MIT is currently working on.Insurance companies better get with the times on this and even with the future technologies on nano-tech.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Future Credit Cards

There has been an upwards trend on gadgets and peripherals implementing credit cards that are making transactions as easy as a swipe and click anywhere. Well credit cards are about to get even more fancy due to some awesome futuristic tech, call it the credit card 2.0.

Major banks such as Chase, Capital One, Wells Fargo and Citi Bank in the near future could offer these type of credit card to its customers. This concept card allows users to simultaneously link all their accounts in one card, hide their account number digitally, and deactivate the magnetic strip until it needs to be used again.  Talk about secure and insurance all under one plastic card. Whats great is this card works just like any other credit card. Works will  all magnetic readers, so its not necessary to go and replace current credit supporting applications. Would have same 0 apr card credit fee as any other card depending on bank, and rules and eligibility requirements.
The card makes use of a pin to show the credit card number, much like a smartphone lock screen requiring a code to get inside the smartphone, etc. Several banks are in talks with the company Dynamics, maker of this awesome tech, to make use of such cards. Your future Chase, Bank of America, Citi Bank, and Capital One credit card could very well be one of these awesome 2.0 Cards. I personally would like having one of these. What's not to like about a futuristic looking card offering security ,insurance, and easy of personal convenience all in one card.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

IBM Watson

IBM news making supercomputer Watson, known famously for beating the best Jeopardy players in the world and taking home the games prize money, has now been tasked  to work for the health insurance industry for the company Wellpoint.  According to the Wall Street Journal the  expectations of the tasks Watson has been given are that of "helping suggest treatment options and diagnoses to doctors". WellPoint and IBM reached the deal Monday allowing  the health insurer to use Watson's toptier technology for a range of applications. As mentioned on the WSJ, "It is part of a far broader push in the health industry to incorporate computerized guidance into care, as doctors and hospitals adopt electronic medical records and other digital tools that can record, track and check their work." Basically this supercomputer will use its computing power to run health applications, such as health insurance records of patients and set appropriate diagnosis with each one at a far better and more accurate range. It will basically be a data center computer will patients info in which many applications can be used simultaneously within each patient. If anyone watched the Jeopardy match up against the best players, Watson proved  to be and lived up to its much anticipated computing power. It has the ability to learn and improve upon itself so one could see it's use in the health industry. WellPoint Insurer has  seen the potential Watson can offer so many suppose a health insurance company using it for medical purposes is a fitting job for such a powerful computer.