Tuesday, October 02, 2007

The Frightening and the Ridiculous

Two tidbits from the soap opera, or is it horror film, that is life on earth these days.

Mind Reading Machine
Imagine the workplace of the future. Everyone in the office wears corporate caps fitted with "functional near-infrared spectroscopy" (fNIRS) sensors. These sensors scan your brain, studying the blood concentrations in the frontal lobe and reporting back exactly how hard each employee's brain is working. The machine will know instantly how hard you are working and will spot the very millisecond your mind drifts into a daydream. The corporate caps can contain a shocking mechanism to jolt the brain back into thinking about work. The MSNBC report and for the sleep deprived the pdf of the original paper.

Romeo & Juliet as Iraqi Mercs
The Iraq government has come up with a plan to end the sectarian violence - pay Sunnis and Sh'ites to intermarry. The Iraq government is paying couples $1,500 for marrying, a full year's income based on the estimated annual per capita income of $800, when they belong to differing sects. The United States equivalent would be paying Jews and Baptists $80,000 to intermarry. The theory is straight out of Shakespeare's play. When young lovers from feuding sects marry they will heal the division. It didn't work out too well for R&J if I remember. The government may want to practice a little tolerance as well. One recipient of the money said her husband disappeared into an Iraqi prison to visit his brother seven months ago and has not been seen again.

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