Links for 2013-02-28

  • Two surgeons debate the use of cycle helmets

    ‘I am a neurosurgeon and a cyclist, and I am also married to a dedicated cyclist. I wear a cycling helmet and encourage cyclists to wear one. I don’t find that wearing one impedes me in any way. I am under no illusion that it will save me in the event of a high speed collision with a car or lorry (nothing will), but most cycling accidents aren’t of the high-speed variety.’ versus: ‘I am a consultant Trauma orthopaedic surgeon working in Edinburgh and have many years of experience treating cyclists after serious road traffic, cycle sport and commuting cycle injuries. I believe there is no justification for helmet laws or promotional campaigns that portray cycling as a particularly ‘dangerous’ activity, or that make unfounded claims about the effectiveness of helmets. By reducing cycle use even slightly, helmet laws or promotion campaigns are likely to cause a significant net disbenefit to public health, regardless of the effectiveness or otherwise of helmets.’ Generally a lot of sense on either side.

    (tags: helmets cycling bicycles health safety surgeons doctors)

  • Storm and Hadoop: Convergence of Big-Data and Low-Latency Processing

    Yahoo! are going big with Storm for their next-generation internal cloud platform: ‘Yahoo! engineering teams are developing technologies to enable Storm applications and Hadoop applications to be hosted on a single cluster. • We have enhanced Storm to support Hadoop style security mechanism (including Kerberos authentication), and thus enable Storm applications authorized to access Hadoop datasets on HDFS and HBase. • Storm is being integrated into Hadoop YARN for resource management. Storm-on-YARN enables Storm applications to utilize the computation resources in our tens of thousands of Hadoop computation nodes. YARN is used to launch Storm application master (Nimbus) on demand, and enables Nimbus to request resources for Storm application slaves (Supervisors).’

    (tags: yahoo yarn cloud-computing private-clouds big-data latency storm hadoop elastic-computing hbase)

  • Trojan paralyses speed cameras in Moscow

    what a coincidence! (via Tony Finch)

    (tags: virus trojans malware via:fanf kaspersky)

  • IOS TCP wifi optimizer

    Basically, tweaking a few suboptimal sysctls to optimize for 802.11b/n; requires a Jailbroken IOS device. I’m surprised that Apple defaulted segment size to 512 to be honest, and disabling delayed ACKs sounds like it might be useful (see also http://www.stuartcheshire.org/papers/NagleDelayedAck/).

    TCP optimizer modifies a few settings inside iOS, including increasing the TCP receive buffer from 131072 to 292000, disabling TCP delayed ACK’s, allowing a maximum of 16 un-ACK’d packets instead of 8 and set the default packet size to 1460 instead of 512. These changes won’t only speed up your YouTube videos, they’ll also improve your internet connection’s performance overall, including Wi-Fi network connectivity.

    (tags: tcp performance tuning ios apple wifi wireless 802.11n sysctl ip)

  • It’s the Sugar, Folks

    A study published in the Feb. 27 issue of the journal PLoS One links increased consumption of sugar with increased rates of diabetes by examining the data on sugar availability and the rate of diabetes in 175 countries over the past decade. And after accounting for many other factors, the researchers found that increased sugar in a population’s food supply was linked to higher diabetes rates independent of rates of obesity. In other words, according to this study, obesity doesn’t cause diabetes: sugar does. The study demonstrates this with the same level of confidence that linked cigarettes and lung cancer in the 1960s. As Rob Lustig, one of the study’s authors and a pediatric endocrinologist at the University of California, San Francisco, said to me, “You could not enact a real-world study that would be more conclusive than this one.”

    (tags: nytimes health food via:fanf sugar eating diabetes papers medicine)

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