Thursday, September 02, 2004

Quick bits...

posted by Tom at 10:43 PM UTC

A few items of interest...

A new study has suggested that women are genetically better equipped than men in distinguishing between colors. This would explain why the wife insists that the living room is painted "dune white" despite the fact that it looks yellow to me.

Folks are buzzing about a curious radio signal detected by the SETI@home project. SETI@home is the clever distributed computing project that is helping to process radio signals from space with the hopes of finding extraterrestrial life. It's of course highly unlikely that the signal is from an intelligent source. However, the SETI@home project is a very cool way for the average home computer user to contribute to real scientific work.

Speaking of signals from above, while walking at lunchtime yesterday I passed a woman in front of the Massachusetts statehouse. She was holding a sign that read "Stop abusing humanbeing from satellite" (sic). I'm with ya, ma'am!

Finally, reader Jason calls our attention to English bookmakers giving odds on scientific breakthroughs. If you want to bet on life on Titan, now's the time to call your bookie. Our best shot at finding out will be coming up in the next six months. NASA's Cassini will be doing its first close flyby of Titan in October and the Huygens probe will be detaching from Cassini and landing on Titan this coming January.