Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Allerca, a company that’s touting itself as a provider of “lifestyle pets”, has announced the development of a hypoallergenic cat in three years’ time.

Yes, it’s playing God with God’s creatures. But as I noted before, as long as the subjects are cute and non-human, it’s all good.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 10/27/2004 08:54pm
Category: Science
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More evidence of broadband Internet service becoming ubiquitous: Upscale housing developments in DC suburbs are offering high-speed wireless connectivity as part of residents’ homeowner association fees.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 10/27/2004 08:39pm
Category: Internet, Society, Wi-Fi
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Whither online smut? People are doing less porn-trolling on the Internet these days, a result of the loss of novelty for most people regarding the Web. That’s according to “Web Search: Public Searching of the Web”, a survey report on global consumer websearching patterns.

Ironically, this development strikes me as the loss of innocence.

Beyond that, it seems that the average person’s online search acumen isn’t getting any better:

We were surprised that people weren’t doing more complex searches,” [survey co-author Professor Amanda] Spink said. “If you put a couple of words into the Web, you’re going to get hundreds of thousands of results. I think people aren’t trained very well to use the search engines.”

I’ve long noticed this, and it drives me to distraction. I could be biased, since I do tons of research via the Web for a living. But really, how can people be that ignorant of, say, the power of quotation marks in a search field? It’s the difference between getting a million results (which are mostly useless) and less than 500. I guess it means there’ll always be work for professional researchers.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 10/27/2004 08:10pm
Category: Internet, Society
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goin' gator
I wouldn’t have believed it, had I not gotten a notification from my alumni association in the mail today. The Eckerd College men’s basketball team is going to Gainesville in a couple of weeks to take on the nationally-ranked University of Florida!

Never thought I’d see the day.

Okay, okay. It’s just an exhibition game, a meaningless tuneup for both squads (although I’d bet it’s more meaningful for EC). It would never happen during the regular season, not least because Eckerd is Division II and not worth the Gators’ time.

Still, it’s significant. Athletics has never been high-profile at Eckerd; they never even merited full scholarships. But the school’s new president apparently sees sports as a way to boost the national profile, and so he’s finagled a limited number of scholarships in all programs. I imagine this game is designed to get some exposure, only the first step for such efforts.

I’m not a hoops fan. Still, I’m tempted to take the trip to UF for this. It’s on November 9th, the day after the deadline for my current all-consuming project, so the schedule’s clear. And while the idea of a long bus trip normally would repel me, the college component would make it fun. The key would be having some familiar alum along for the ride. If there’s a decent group going, I’m there.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 10/27/2004 07:41pm
Category: Basketball, College Years
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curses
Can’t miss tonight’s total lunar eclipse, the last for North America until 2007. I know someone who’s looking forward to it, with voodoo-like anticipation.

And yet, I see a problem:

This year, superstitious baseball fans are wondering whether the eclipse will be a dark omen for the supposedly cursed Boston Red Sox or bad luck for the St. Louis Cardinals. The teams are scheduled to meet in Game 4 of the World Series tonight.

Yes, BoSox fans know firsthand that 3-0 leads are not sure things. And winning eight in a row is daunting for any team.

Still, the way Boston is playing, it’s looking mighty likely that they’ll win tonight. Meaning Boston kills the Curse, and brings home it’s first World Series win in 86 years.

So, combine that with the eclipse, and it means the world ends tonight. No getting around it: All signs point toward Armageddon.

It’s been nice knowing all of you.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 10/27/2004 07:19pm
Category: Baseball, Science
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