5 Intriguing Things

Randi Zuckerberg's book, auditory determent devices, the glory of Fourier transform, the 3D printing biz, and a massive treasure trove of data about Earth.
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1. The last page of Randi Zuckerberg's book.

 

2. The sonic war on birds and other crop stealers.

"A Bird Gard can also play species-specific distress calls. Got pain-in-the-ass finches? Put in the right computer chip, and your speakers will serenade them with chirps and tweets that will trick those birds into staying away."

 

3. What a Fourier transform is, and why they're ubiquitous.

"Now, instead of single key, say you play three keys together to make a chord. The resulting sound wave isn’t as pretty—it looks like a complicated mess. But hidden in that messy sound wave is a simple pattern. After all, the chord was just three keys struck together, and so the messy sound wave that results is really just the sum of three notes (or sine waves)."

 

4. The largest and most important 3-D printing company, Stratasys, reported its quarterly results.

"For the three months ended September 30, 2013, we recorded a net loss attributable to Stratasys Ltd. of $6.6 million."

 

5. The National Center of Atmospheric Research scoured the scientific world for 6,000 old datasets about how the earth operates and made them available online.

"'We found one tape in a garage in Edmonton, Alberta,' says Williams. It held data from the Severe Environmental Storm and Mesoscale Experiment (SESAME) project, a landmark study of severe storms across the Great Plains in 1979."

 

* Thanks Hilary Mason!

#yay #yourestillreading

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Alexis C. Madrigal

Alexis Madrigal is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where he oversees the Technology Channel. He's the author of Powering the Dream: The History and Promise of Green Technology. More

The New York Observer calls Madrigal "for all intents and purposes, the perfect modern reporter." He co-founded Longshot magazine, a high-speed media experiment that garnered attention from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the BBC. While at Wired.com, he built Wired Science into one of the most popular blogs in the world. The site was nominated for best magazine blog by the MPA and best science Web site in the 2009 Webby Awards. He also co-founded Haiti ReWired, a groundbreaking community dedicated to the discussion of technology, infrastructure, and the future of Haiti.

He's spoken at Stanford, CalTech, Berkeley, SXSW, E3, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and his writing was anthologized in Best Technology Writing 2010 (Yale University Press).

Madrigal is a visiting scholar at the University of California at Berkeley's Office for the History of Science and Technology. Born in Mexico City, he grew up in the exurbs north of Portland, Oregon, and now lives in Oakland.

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