29 September 2005

Arbitrary Numbers versus Glaciers

Wow. Today has been pretty cool so far.
First item: iPod profit margins. I just had this brainwave about how much money apple is making off the iPods, the nano in particular. Take the regular iPod, 20 gigs for 250$. That's 12.50$ a gig. Look at the nano. 4 gigs for the same price. 5 times the profit margin. Add another multiplier onto that because of the capitalization on the popularity of the mini and shuffle, and you get 10 times the profit margin. Wow, I guess that's a LOT OF MONEY, EH?
Second- Holy shit, glaciers are CRAZY. Apparently they're responsible for humans having to develop so much out of the womb. Here's why: When glaciation occurs, things get HUGE (animals et al), because of increased food supply. When animals get huge, they get more social, both for hunting and protection (note here- lions obviously evolved in Europe, because they are the only social big cats). So the primates got together, and got huge. Our ancestors, Neanderthals, evolved here, with big brains that were used to control their massive frame and musculature. (please note, whales have much bigger brains than us because THEY ARE BIGGER. Same with dolphins. Brain size has NOTHING to do with intelligence.) (note 2- Neanderthals were HUGE. Try 7'6", 340 pounds on AVERAGE. ) So... when the glaciers receded for the last time, Neanderthals died off. Why? Simple. You need tons of food to fuel a body that big. When all the animals got smaller because of receding glaciers, poor homo neanderthalis just couldn't find enough food. So small, quick, homo sapiens survived. But what does this have to do with human birth and gestation? Since Neanderthals were so big, it's hypothesized as highly likely that they carried their babies in the womb for two full years longer than we do now. Why 2? Because that's how long it takes for our brains to fully develop to the level where we are at least as competent as newborn chimps.
Thus, we humans are born unformed and pathetic. And our extra brain space? Um... not much to devote it to OTHER than intelligence. Accident, not design. We've just been confusing correlation for cause and effect.

20 September 2005

Finally

Now Playing: COIL & KOEI - Twisted Reality

Wow. I know I haven't posted in a long time, but time has just FLOWN. I have had so much stuff to do, so many people to meet, and so many things to think about. I'll try to be
vaguely chronological.

My advisor is a jackass. He's just a mean person. That is that.

Coincidentally, he has the same last name as one of the most awesome teachers that I have. The awesome one is Lynn Miller, who shall now be referred to as Master Miller, of Metal Gear fame. Lynn is a crazy old man with bad teeth, a nutty sense of humor, and a reputation that scares the pee out of me. This is the only man I am genuinely afraid of. In class, that vanishes, because he's funny and a great teacher... but for some reason he still scares me. His class looks to be the toughest thing I take this semester.
Today we received what I shall be referring to as the ?Miller Backhand.? We were supposed to read two chapters in one of our books for today, and we were all feeling like we were asleep or something. After 20 minutes of ineffective question-finding, Lynn throws up his hands and says ?Unless someone can come up with some good questions, I'll be in my office.? And he walked off. I felt like shit. In fact, I think lots of us did. (I DID do the reading, btw)

Having access to other people's music is nice, even if you can't actually GET it, just listen. Musical tastes ++.

My other classes have been interesting, but nothing groundbreaking. Existentialism is getting kinda cool, I just hope it doesn't stay with the soggy theory bits. We're reading Kierkegaard's Fear and Trembling right now. Art and Science of the Digital Image is piss-easy so far, but hey, what can I say? I need a class that I can pwn in the face. It looks to get harder, eventually. But right now, I can just have fun, wee.

In other news, I managed to be weak and pitiful and buy too many games. What else is new? Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory is WIN, MK: Deception is SUCK, and I'm improving at SF 3rd Strike.

We did a ninja run last night. As you might guess, there were ninjas, running and all sorts of like shenanigans involved. Also: there was a samurai and a cowboy. You may not have known this. Now you do.

Also Also: It appear I am teh funnay at 2 in the morning. I win.

12 September 2005

Temp

I'll post soon. Really. I just have to sleep now. Also please note that I am using EST now.