Link Dump

Not much time this week, so here are some interesting links:
  • A little while ago, I wrote about two software projects, one successful, one not. David Foster, who initially pointed me towards this story, has a follow up on one of the projects. The FBI's failure to develop a "Virtual Case File" system was bad enough, and now they're denying Freedom Of Information Act requests made by folks why are trying to figure out just went wrong with the project. My initial reaction was that the project failed due to a lack of discipline. And now the failure deepens as the FBI seeks to deny accountability in the project.
  • The Physics of ET Civilizations by Michio Kaku: An interesting take on what constitutes a truly advanced civilization. He claims that we should rank civilizations by their energy consumption:
    In a seminal paper published in 1964 in the Journal of Soviet Astronomy, Russian astrophysicist Nicolai Kardashev theorized that advanced civilizations must therefore be grouped according to three types: Type I, II, and III, which have mastered planetary, stellar and galactic forms of energy, respectively. He calculated that the energy consumption of these three types of civilization would be separated by a factor of many billions.
    We're currently living in a Type 0 civilization, but we're moving quickly towards a Type 1 civilization. How long after that could we reach Type 2?
  • 10 Ways To Create Content For Your Weblog: Ostensibly written to help us overcome bloggers block, but with such earth shattering advice as "Read, Listen To, or Watch the News" and "read your favorite blogs with the purpose of finding ideas to write about," I can't say as though it's that big of a help. I'll admit I've been in a bit of a funk lately, but this has more to do with a lack of time and energy than ideas. Until I get the time and motivation to write more, lists of links like this seem to be the order of the day.
  • Caring for Your Introvert by Jonathan Rauch: This is old, but it's a great article explaining a much understood group: introverts:
    What is introversion? ... Introverts are not necessarily shy. Shy people are anxious or frightened or self-excoriating in social settings; introverts generally are not. Introverts are also not misanthropic, though some of us do go along with Sartre as far as to say "Hell is other people at breakfast." Rather, introverts are people who find other people tiring.

    Extroverts are energized by people, and wilt or fade when alone. They often seem bored by themselves, in both senses of the expression. Leave an extrovert alone for two minutes and he will reach for his cell phone. In contrast, after an hour or two of being socially "on," we introverts need to turn off and recharge. My own formula is roughly two hours alone for every hour of socializing. This isn't antisocial. It isn't a sign of depression. It does not call for medication. For introverts, to be alone with our thoughts is as restorative as sleeping, as nourishing as eating.
That's all for now.