Monthly Archives: April 2011
From Sticker Giant
In the latest issue of Action Comics, #900, Superman decides that the world is now too small of a place for him to have American citizenship, so he renounces it. The proximate cause of this madness was an accusation from the Iranian government that he was acting as an agent of the US, when attending a protest in Tehran as a sign of solidarity to the Iranian people. Said Superman, “truth, justice and the American way’ it’s not enough anymore”. As for the ultimate cause, perhaps he read that article on the end of American hegemony, and decided not to stay with the sinking ship. In any case, after 73 years and 900 comic book issues, Superman is no longer American.
The New York Times is reporting that at least on the iPhone side, the issue of the smartphone tracking itself is being addressed by Apple and will be fixed in the next iOS release. Apparently, the locations the iPhone was tracking were actually not of the phone itself, but rather Wi-Fi networks it comes in contact with; which is a bit of lip service, because it’s like saying you’re not writing down the location of the apples in a tree, just the tree itself. The reason it does this is apparently benevolent: to make geolocation easier. Getting your location via GPS can take a couple of minutes and indoors, especially windowless indoors, it just won’t work. Because of that, Apple keeps an iPhone-generated central database of the locations of all cell towers and Wi-Fi networks, and then your particular iPhone uses that database to approximate your location much faster — in a few seconds as opposed to minutes. Oh but wait, it also uses the data to generate a future traffic info service, so it’s not all benevolent.
But, it’s anonymous at least. And they’re blaming that file that’s left on your phone and computer out in the open, on a bug. Therefore, in the next iOS release that file won’t store the location data forever, just for the past 7 days. And it’ll be encrypted.
So what’s the net result of all this? The location file is going to be less ominous and more guarded, but the iPhone will still phone home to Apple as it pleases. You can bet the encryption on that file will be broken pretty quickly though, so all this really does is put a 7-day limit on how fast the Gestapo has to get their hands on your phone.
From The New York Times
Yahoo! Finance has an article saying that by one measure of economic size — purchasing power parity (PPP) — China will surpass the US in 2016. That’s what’s predicted by the IMF, and it’s a lot sooner than the mid-2020s that most people thought. However, America will still be ahead of China by a different measure: that of exchange rates. The problem is that using exchange rates is flawed because China is still the Soviet Union’s rich cousin, and currency is not traded on the free market like the US dollar: it’s controlled by the Chinese state, and severely undervalued.
Purchasing power parity on the other hand, is what’s used by the CIA’s own World Factbook to rank countries in terms of the size of their economies. By that measure, the American economy was three times as big as China’s a decade ago; last year, it was about one and a half times bigger. The US has been the largest economy in the world for well over a century, and therefore the enormity of this milestone cannot be underscored enough. Before taking the reigns as the biggest economy, the only country America ever beat down was Mexico; after, Japan and Germany — at the same time. So what all of this means is that whoever gets (re-)elected in 2012 will be the last President to run the US as the undisputed leader of the world.
We could say that the British — from whom America took the economic lead at the end of the 19th century — did well for themselves… but then again, the US is as close an ally as the UK has. The relationship between China and the US however, is a much different animal — like if early 1900s Imperial Japan took over from Britain — and it will be interesting to see what the world will look like under Chinese economic hegemony. But, hopefully the Illuminati have some craziness up their sleeve to keep the West in power.
From Yahoo! Financial
- The Metabolic Resistance Training (MRT) method is very effective for weight loss; it’s weight training that alternates between upper and lower body. You still have to diet, but MRT test subjects lost 20% more fat than people who dieted and did aerobics, and 30% more than people who just dieted.
- Lifting weights will not make you bulky, but it will develop definition and tone, as well as keep your bones strong. You have to be pretty deliberate about gaining muscle mass, so just stay away from really heavy weights and Mr. Universe magazines, and there’s little chance you’ll accidentally end up looking like Schwarzenegger. Lifting heavy weights is also not an efficient ways to burn calories.
- It doesn’t matter when you work out: you won’t burn more calories working out in the morning, for example. Just do it when you feel best, so you have the energy to put into you workout and make it more effective.
- Slow cardio, meaning aerobic exercise during which you can still talk — like walking, or riding a tiny bike slowly and perhaps ominously — loses effectiveness pretty quickly because your body adapts and becomes more efficient at doing the same activity by burning less calories. How do you beat it? Interval training: shorter periods of intense aerobic exercise with periods of rest in between. And your body continues to burn extra calories for 38 hours after interval training, as opposed to zero hours after slow cardio.
- Beware of protein powder and bars that have a lot of added sugar and fat. Protein tastes pretty awful, so a lot of manufacturers have been sneaking stuff in to make it palatable– stuff that will make you fat(ter).
- Dried fruits are pretty bad for you — eat regular fruits instead. They contain water, and no added sugar.