Monday, June 25, 2012


Editor's note --  Alan Turing is the founding father of all computers, Google and every other Internet company today. Turing also cracked secret Nazi code, so he practically won World War II single-handedly.  

This past Saturday was Turing's 100th birthday. Google honored its ancestor with a coded Doodle. People could try to program it and once each level of six codes was solved, the next level got more difficult.
The 2012 Turing Year is coordinated by the Turing Centenary Advisory Committee (TCAC)

There's a video on the Washington Post link (below) that shows how to break the code. The Editor did not get to Level Six (or even try).

Who else is at ? -- Alan Turing Google Doodle: At 100, celebrating the genius — by the numbers  

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

In Praise of Publius

Editor's note -- Special Feature: Publius parodies "The Hunting of the Snark" by Lewis Carroll in the comments at The Economist. Faedrus (the Troll) was trying to annoy The Usual Suspect (and everyone else), so Publius intervened.
“Just the place for a Snark!” the Pascover cried,
 As he landed his crew with care;
Supporting each man on the top of the tide
 By a finger entwined in his hair.

“Just the place for a Snark! I have said it twice:
 That alone should encourage the crew.
Just the place for a Snark! I have said it thrice:
 What I tell you three times is true.”
The crew was complete: it included a Faedrus —
 A maker of Witfull Asides —
A Teacup brought to arrange their disputes —
 And a Gardner, to value their goods.
A Usual Suspect, whose skill was immense,
 Might perhaps have won more than his share —
But a Hedgefundguy, engaged at enormous expense,
 Had the whole of their cash in his care.
There was also an Ashbird, that paced on the deck,
 Or would sit making lace in the bow:
And had often (the Pascover said) saved them from wreck,
 Though none of the sailors knew how.
There was one who was famed for the number of things
 He forgot when he entered the ship:
His umbrella, his watch, all his jewels and rings,
 And the clothes he had bought for the trip.
He had forty-two boxes, all carefully packed,
 With his name painted clearly on each:
But, since he omitted to mention the fact,
 They were all left behind on the beach.
The loss of his clothes hardly mattered, because
 He had seven coats on when he came,
With three pairs of boots — but the worst of it was,
 He had wholly forgotten his name.
He would answer to “Publius!” or to any loud cry,
 Such as “Fry me!” or “Fritter my wig!”
To “What-you-may-call-um!” or “What-was-his-name!”
 But especially “Thing-um-a-jig!”
While, for those who preferred a more forcible word,
 He had different names from these:
His intimate friends called him “Candle-ends,”
 And his enemies “Toasted-cheese.”
“His form is ungainly — his intellect small —”
 (So the Pascover would often remark)
“But his courage is perfect! And that, after all,
 Is the thing that one needs with a Snark.”
He would joke with hyenas, returning their stare
 With an impudent wag of the head:
And he once went a walk, paw-in-paw, with a bear,
 “Just to keep up its spirits,” he said.
He came as a Thinker: but owned, when too late —
 And it drove the poor Pascover half-mad —
He could only think Whiskey! — for which, I may state,
 No materials were to be had.

Illustrations by Henry Holiday (1876)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


Editor's note -- The Thames Diamond Jubilee River Pageant (final)

Members of the Royal Family (from left to right) The Duchess of Cambridge, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Prince of Wales, The Queen, Prince William and Prince Harry on the Royal Barge 'Spirit of Chartwell' during the Diamond Jubilee River Pageant on the River Thames, London, 3 June 2012.
© Press Association

The British Monarchy's photostream.  
H/T: Beth Cleaver -- "As usual, Beatrice looks ridiculous."

Monday, June 4, 2012


Editor's note: The Thames Diamond Jubilee River Pageant (cont.)

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and
 Prince Harry, prepare to board the Spirit of
Chartwell where they joined the Queen for
the Diamond Jubilee Pageant on the River 
Thames in London, 3 June 2012.

© Press Association


The British Monarchy's photostream.  
H/T: Beth Cleaver -- "As usual, Beatrice looks ridiculous."

Sunday, June 3, 2012


Editor's note: The Thames Diamond Jubilee River Pageant...

Members of the public take their places on the South Bank in readiness for the River Pageant, 
3 June 2012

© Press Association


The British Monarchy's photostream.  H/T: Beth Cleaver -- "As usual, Beatrice looks ridiculous."