Brainings, Cause and Effect

This Ain’t Bull, It’s a Horse

OK, so this story is a little bit of bull, but I like it. I’m desperately hoping engineerd™ doesn’t show up an tell me it’s all wrong, but I’m going to tell it anyway. Maybe I’ll check snopes first… yeah OK, it’s partly bull but it’s fun. Strap in, here we go…

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Cause and Effect, Neutrinos with Syrup

Where Is Your Technology Now?

This was a big, healthy, beefy tree. It was uprooted, completely out of the ground.

I’m going off book for just a moment, here. I know, we’re here to talk about technology and how awesome and amazing it is, but occasionally there are moments when we, as human beings, need a small dose of humility. We can quite easily get caught up in ourselves and think that we’re pretty awesome for all the whiz-bang technology that we’ve managed to come up with.

And then sometimes we need to remember that we’re not all that.

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Cause and Effect

Time Waster of the Week – Run your own Nuke plant!

I ran across this little gem a few days ago while hanging out at the VW Vortex Car Lounge, where they have an incredible thread on photos of last month’s Tsunami disaster. The images are compelling and heartbreaking, and as time progresses they just keep getting more amazing.

Yet, once in a while […]

AT Book Club, Cause and Effect

Parkinson’s Laws: Is Bureaucratic Inefficiency Inevitable?


Work expands to fill the time available. Once expanded, the reverse is not true. C. Northcote Parkinson (1909-1993), a British history professor, first articulated this famous adage in a 1955 essay in the London Economist, demonstrating why a bureaucracy’s growth is self-perpetuating. While initially intended as a somewhat satirical criticism of England’s mid-century colonial bureaucracy, the basic concept is easy to extrapolate to other areas of life: a person’s belongings expand to fill the storage space available, and network traffic always expands to fill bandwidth, simply because users will come up with things to do with it that they wouldn’t if it were not available. Parkinson’s Law has, indeed, proven to be a serious and valid explanation for many social and psychological phenomena, most of which do not paint a very pretty picture of human nature.
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Cause and Effect, Startup

Startup: Great Power, Questionable Merit

If your neighbour has one of these on his front lawn, don't complain about his dog.

Today marks the 197th anniversary of the Allies capture of Paris in the Napoleonic Wars, which led to Napoleon’s exile to the island of Elba. His return a year later would lead to the Battle of Waterloo and his ultimate defeat. It also marked a period of drastic change in the tactics and technology utilised in warfare up to that point.

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