TWIL - Week #35
This Week I Learned:
- Windows Azure runs web sites in a sandboxed environment that allows multiple sites to safely co-exist on the same machine. The GDI API doesn't work due to sandbox limitations.
- Nelson Mandela is the second non-Indian to be honoured with the highest civilian award of India, Bharat Ratna (Jewel of India).
- Randall Munroe, the creator of the webcomic xkcd and author of the science blog What If left NASA in 2006 to draw comics for a living.
- Two of the internet's top ten websites have been created by Evan Williams's companies: Blogger; weblog-authoring software of Pyra Labs; Twitter, where he was previously CEO; and Medium. Williams invented the term "blogger" and was instrumental in the popularization of the term "blog".
- Managing shift changes with the tools of circadian biology can help avoid negative impacts on occupational performance - Rotating shifts with the clock is better than rotating shifts against the clock. There is a suggestion that New York Metro North train driver, William Rockefeller, who was involved in a fatal derailment changed from the afternoon shift to the day shift two weeks ago. Mr. Rockefeller’s shift change was against the clock – afternoon shift to day shift rather than afternoon shift to night shift – which is associated with greater sleepiness and more frequent accidents.
- Hospital charges represent about a third of the $2.7 trillion annual United States health care bill. Hospitals are the most powerful players in a health care system that has little or no price regulation in the private market.
- Amazon ties up with India Post - India Post, India's 150-year-old postal service, is the largest postal network in the world reaching 25000 PIN codes. Private courier companies reach at most 10000 PIN codes. India Post has more than 150000 post offices in India with 89% in rural areas. Amazon has started pilot project with India post to test cash-on-delivery model. Cash on delivery accounts for two-thirds of ecommerce transactions. Amazon partnered with the troubled US Postal Service last month to start Sunday deliveries.
- 125 million Indians speak English, twice the 61 million English speakers in the UK, quadruple the 33 million in Canada, and about six times the 22 million in Australia.
- Wikipedia has a Simple English version. It is suggested that such articles be written using words in one of these word lists Basic English BE 850, Basic English BE 1500, VOA Special English Word Book. One enterprising Microsoft Word user has found a way to check a document for Basic English by re-purposing the Microsoft Word Exclusion Dictionary.
- Asimov predicted that "mankind will suffer badly from the disease of boredom" and “The lucky few who can be involved in creative work of any sort will be the true elite of mankind, for they alone will do more than serve a machine.”
- Google, which is on pace to collect some 1,800 patents this year, appears to be committed to amassing one of the world's largest patent portfolios... The company seems to be following the philosophy of Apple, which suffered a $100 million loss in an intellectual-property fight over the iPod in the mid-2000s and now believes in patenting everything.... a typical smart phone could be covered by as many as a quarter of a million patents, but like most patents they are "largely questionable" and for the most part "dubious." The U.S. Supreme Court will soon attempt to answer a question that has perplexed the technology industry for decades: When is a piece of software patentable?
- Google effect refers to the tendency to forget information that can be found readily online by using Internet search engines
- Gmail now warns that not all of its features are supported in IE 9
- Design of Everyday Things by Donald Norman is available in multiple ebook formats on Archive.org