Monthly Archives: June 2010

CAPTCHAs (and reCAPTCHAs)

I learned about an interesting application of CAPTCHAs this past week.  Good timing, too, since CAPTCHAs make a nice follow-on to last week’s post about the Turing Test and interactive proof systems. First, what is a CAPTCHA?  Last week, I … Continue reading

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Turing’s Law of Robotics?

“Any sufficiently advanced algorithm is indistinguishable from human intelligence.” Alan Turing began his 1950 paper, “Computing Machinery and Intelligence,” with the proposal “to consider the question, ‘Can machines think?’”  He went on to describe what is now commonly called the … Continue reading

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Skyboxes and Xboxes

My most recent project started out pretty simply.  I bought a wireless Xbox 360 controller for Windows.  The “for Windows” part was why I bought it; I don’t have an Xbox 360.  But Microsoft provides what they call the XInput interface … Continue reading

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Remembering Martin Gardner

Martin Gardner died last month, on 22 May 2010.  He was 95 years old, and in the words of Elwyn Berlekamp, John H. Conway, and Richard Guy, he “brought more math to more millions than anyone else.”  I know he … Continue reading

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Sabermetrics

(Cool word, huh?  18 points not counting a double or triple word score.) I was reading USA Today a couple of weeks ago… not on purpose, really.  We were on vacation, and it was delivered to our hotel room every … Continue reading

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Miracles happen every day

… as long as you don’t specify beforehand what miracle you might be interested in observing. A very good friend of mine, nomasir, had an interesting post recently on his blog, referring to a British news article about a grandfather, … Continue reading

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