Archive for the 'Science & technology' Category

Traditions and dogmas rub one another down to a minimum in such centers of varied intercourse; where there are a thousand faiths we are apt to become sceptical of them all. Probably the traders were the first sceptics; they had seen too much to believe too much; and the general disposition of merchants to classify […]

In general, quantum mechanics does not predict a single definite result for an observation. Instead, it predicts a number of different outcomes and tells us how likely each of these is. That is to say, if one made the same measurement on a large number of similar systems, each of which started off in the […]

I am partial to an education system which has the English language as its medium of instruction. That is because I am most comfortable where English is the primary and the common language. While the Malay language is my mother tongue, I mostly use English to run both my private and professional life. For a […]

I was running some regressions at work just now and I realized my overdependence on computers had made me forgotten how to calculate certain statistics manually. Modern regression softwares automatically calculate various statistics less than a second and I hardly think of what happens in that virtual blackbox. But just now, I was following up […]

Fun-quotation-that-has-something-to-do-with-Australia: …he had confessed to repeated intercourse with sheep on a recent visit to the family farm; perhaps that was how he had contracted the mysterious microbe. This incident sounds bizarrely one-of-a-kind and of no possible broader significance. In fact, it illustrates an enormous subject of great importance: human diseases of animal origin. Very few […]

From those precursors of food production already practiced by hunter-gatherers, it developed stepwise. Not all the necessary techniques were developed within a short time, and not all the wild plants and animals that were eventually domesticated in a given area were domesticated simultaneously. Even in the cases of most rapid independent development of food production […]

I am not an Apple fanboy. I was anti-Apple even. I remember the first Apple computer I used long ago. Wikipedia tells me that it was Macintosh Classic. Its screen had only two colors: green and black. I was happy of playing Karate-Ka on it, and other games that for the life of me, I cannot […]

There are several reasons why organic decision-making is better than central planning. The complexity of the world is one. By complexity, it means nobody has the ability to absorb all relevant information in a timely manner to react effectively. In some ways, this is the economic calculation problem. It is an argument against the communist […]

The dawn of the 21st century disappoints the part of me growing up reading works of science fiction. Here we are living in a much too glorified new century and there are still no flying cars crisscrossing the sky, no aliens from outer space walking our streets and no human bases across the solar system. We […]

Last week in Kuala Lumpur, I was at the Plaza Rakyat LRT station when a family lugging wheelie suitcases asked me whether they were at the right platform to get to KL Sentral. Being from out of town myself, I said I did not know, but continued to watch them because the two teenage daughters […]

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