Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Mexico: 18 Bodies Found in Tijuana

The police discovered a dozen partly clothed bodies on Monday, most of which had been bound and tortured, dumped next to an elementary school in Tijuana.

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Is AOL Dying?

I received this notification:

Dear AOL Journals user,

We’re sorry to inform you that on Oct. 31, 2008, AOL® Journals will be shut down permanently. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

It’s very important that you save your Journals content before the shutdown. We're working on a way to easily move your Journal to another blogging service -- you can expect an email within the next week with more details about how to do it. We want the transition to go as smoothly as possible for you, so you’ll have two choices. You can either save your information manually and find another place to blog on your own, or choose to automatically transfer your Journal to a different blogging service we’ve selected.

In the meantime, please bookmark the People Connection Blog, where you can find out more about AOL Journals. You can also subscribe to the People Connection Blog RSS feed to stay informed about any changes. We’ll be updating the People Connection Blog often, so please check it regularly.

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we make this transition.


The AOL Journals Team

When Madmen Reign

The question voters should be asking John McCain is whether he has stopped serving his party’s economic Kool-Aid and is ready to change his ways.

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Paul Krugman: People I agree with, part two

Jamie Galbraith, pre-House-debacle, offers a jaundiced pro-Dodd-Frank argument essentially the same as mine:In short, as I said at the beginning, the bill is a vast improvement over the original Treasury proposal. Given the choice between approving or defeating the bill as it stands, I would urge supporting the bill. I do so without illusions.

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Paul Krugman: Where Will the Money Come From?

In the end, the US government will rescue the financial system — not today or tomorrow, maybe not Thursday, but soon, and for the rest of our lives, or anyway until the next crisis.But, people ask me, where will we get the money? Won’t we have to borrow it from the Chinese?Actually, no. Ten years [...]

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Monday, September 29, 2008

The Most Dangerous Job on Earth

If Pakistan is the most dangerous country on earth, then Asif Ali Zardari has taken one of the world’s least enviable posts as president.

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Jewish New Year

Happy New Year
Today we celebrate the year 5769 in the Jewish Calendar.
It is a composite number 3x1923.

Lawmakers Defy Bush and Party Leaders, Rejecting Bailout

In a moment of historic drama in the Capitol and on Wall Street, the House of Representatives voted 228-205 to reject a $700 billion rescue of the financial industry.

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Paul Krugman: OK, we are a banana republic

House votes no. Rex Nutting has the best line: House to Wall Street: Drop Dead. He also correctly places the blame and/or credit with House Republicans. For reasons I’ve already explained, I don’t think the Dem leadership was in a position to craft a bill that would have achieved overwhelming Democratic support, so make or [...]

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Active Time in the Galaxy?

I am reading the results of Profs. Napier and Wickramasinghe (below):

"Almost exactly two cycles ago, in fact.  The figures show that we're very close to another danger zone, when the odds of asteroid impact on Earth go up by a factor of ten.  Ten times a tiny chance might not seem like much, but when "Risk of Extinction" is on the table that single order of magnitude can look much more imposing.  Worse, Bruce Willis will only be available to save us for another fifty years at most.  But you have to remember that ten times a very small number is still a very small number - and Earth has been struck by thousands of asteroids without any exciting extinction events.  A rock doesn't just have to hit us, it has to be large enough to survive the truly fearsome forces that cause most to burn up on re-entry."

It seems the Solar System is getting into dangerous regions of the Milky Way. As if we needed another worry.

Nobel Laureate: Bush's Economic Time Bomb. Cover story 2007

Joseph Stiglitz warns: a tax code that has become hideously biased in favor of the rich; a national debt increased 70 percent; a record $850 billion trade deficit; record oil prices; weak dollar. In addition, the US has not been educating enough engineers and scientists, nor investing in the kinds of basic research we need to lead in the 21st cent.

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Our Solar System's Deadly Journey Through the Milky Way

Professor William Napier and Dr Janaki Wickramasinghe have completed computer simulations of the motion of the Sun in our outer spiral-arm location in the Milky Way (image left of spiral arms). These models reveal a regular oscillation through the central galactic plane, where the surrounding dust clouds are the densest.

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House Locked in Vote on Bailout Plan

With enough “no” votes recorded to defeat the measure, barring a change in position by some lawmakers, the markets were plunging early in the afternoon.

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Today 25 Years Ago

Richard Stallman started a revolution with a few friends twenty five years ago. I was far from Boston then. I was in Puebla Mexico as a Professor of Theoretical Physics.  The initial group is an inspiration for me, how they achieved so much with so litle. I left Boston the Summer before the Fall announcement. I did not know Stallman and his friends then. 

Thanks to the Not Unix Group of Friends.

Happy Anniversary!

Markets Retreat in Europe and Asia

European and Asian stocks fell Monday, as the agreement on the $700 billion U.S. plan to rescue Wall Street failed to improve investor confidence or stimulate inter-bank lending.

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Richard Stallman Looks Back at 25 Years of The GNU Project

On September 27, 1983, Richard M. Stallman announced his intention to found the GNU project in order to build a free operating system. Now, 25 years later, the Free Software Foundation is marking the anniversary of the announcement with a month-long celebration. Looking back at the last quarter century, Stallman expresses some guarded satisfaction

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Chrome in Linux!

My Mandriva installation is rendering this note in Chrome for Linux!

Chromium: Google’s Browser on Linux and Mac

Jeremy White, the CEO of Codeweavers, decided to take matters into his own hands. So on September 4th he summoned his army to get Chromium (which is the open source project behind Chrome) ported to Linux and Mac ASAP. Long story short, they achieved that in only 11 days! Boy Wine has matured!

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Citigroup Buys Banking Operations of Wachovia

The sale would further concentrate Americans’ bank deposits in the hands of just three banks: Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup.

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The 3 A.M. Call for the President

The next president will likely have to deal with some major financial emergencies. Barack Obama seems well informed. John McCain, on the other hand, scares me.

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Brazil and China?

Today Wall Street is falling. The Bush Administration could still stop the worst financial crisis in a long time. This is not the end of the world, but as far as crises go, this one is up high in anybody's scale. Mexico is not much better, nowadays there is no center of power, it is ironic coming from somebody like me; I am a liberal, not an authoritarian, but I can see that if power leaves the President, then power is up for grabs.

I see a deeper problem though; it is not only the "Laissez-faire" policies of the Republican Party in the US, or the inexperience of the Mexican President's National Action Party (PAN for its initials in Spanish) to run the country. It is the idea of progress at the expense of the other, and the environment, which to me, seems to be the root cause of what we see now. I have a sense of our species being at odds with Nature itself.

Of course if it is so, one could ask why now?

It is a historic fact that systems end, what one has to argue is why now is the time of reckoning for the tenets of laissez fair capitalism. I am not going to answer that, If I knew, I would've bought the right kind of stock and I would be a wealthy man by now, far from it. All I intend to do here is write a few post mortem ideas on the Bush Administration and the PAN failures to do what they were elected to do, to promote their respective ideologies, and their more important task, to protect their material base, the treasure of their countries.

Condoleeza Rice leaves a world in disarray for her successor. Almost all of Latin America jumped ship on the American model, from Nicaragua to Argentina the IMF does not set financial policies as it once did.

Countries that went their own way, like Brazil, seem to be faring better than the US right now. The media barons, Murdoch in the US, and Azcarraga in Mexico, are doing their best to keep people distracted while they keep the capital they can keep. I am not in the pay of neither man, so I can write here, what I think is wrong. The US and Mexico stopped producing goods and only managed the wealth they inherited, other countries filled the void, China and Brazil, among them. What we see now is one of the biggest capital transfers in history. In twenty years time it will be more important what the presidents in Brasilia, and Beijing, think, than whoever is in Washington D.C., thinks.

For my readers I know that this conclusion is not unexpected coming from me.

But there it is. The King is Dead, Long Live the King!

Besides you do not have to believe me, you can read Nobel Laurate Joseph E. Stiglitz:

"And it gets worse. After almost seven years of this president, the United States is less prepared than ever to face the future. We have not been educating enough engineers and scientists, people with the skills we will need to compete with China and India. We have not been investing in the kinds of basic research that made us the technological powerhouse of the late 20th century. And although the president now understands—or so he says—that we must begin to wean ourselves from oil and coal, we have on his watch become more deeply dependent on both."

"The continuing reliance on oil, regardless of price, points to one more administration legacy: the failure to diversify America’s energy resources. Leave aside the environmental reasons for weaning the world from hydrocarbons—the president has never convincingly embraced them, anyway. The economic and national-security arguments ought to have been powerful enough. Instead, the administration has pursued a policy of “drain America first”—that is, take as much oil out of America as possible, and as quickly as possible, with as little regard for the environment as one can get away with, leaving the country even more dependent on foreign oil in the future, and hope against hope that nuclear fusion or some other miracle will come to the rescue. So many gifts to the oil industry were included in the president’s 2003 energy bill that John McCain referred to it as the “No Lobbyist Left Behind” bill."

"Globalization means that America’s economy and the rest of the world have become increasingly interwoven. Consider those bad American mortgages. As families default, the owners of the mortgages find themselves holding worthless pieces of paper. The originators of these problem mortgages had already sold them to others, who packaged them, in a non-transparent way, with other assets, and passed them on once again to unidentified others. When the problems became apparent, global financial markets faced real tremors: it was discovered that billions in bad mortgages were hidden in portfolios in Europe, China, and Australia, and even in star American investment banks such as Goldman Sachs and Bear Stearns. Indonesia and other developing countries—innocent bystanders, really—suffered as global risk premiums soared, and investors pulled money out of these emerging markets, looking for safer havens. It will take years to sort out this mess."

Biggest Mersenne So Far

You can read in the AOL site about this landmark:

Biggest Mersenne So Far.

Friday, September 26, 2008

61 Nobel Laureates can’t be wrong

"When 61 Nobel Laureates express such dismay at the current state of affairs, and such uniform and clear conviction that Obama is the best candidate, perhaps it’s time to take notice?"

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Is the $700 Billion Really for Bailing Out the Fed?

Is the $700 billion being disguised as a bailout for banks, when it is really for bailing out the Federal Reserve? Is it a way of avoiding the embarrassment of walking into Congress and admitting the truth of the need for Congress to authorize issuance of new Treasury bills to recapitalize the nation’s central bank?

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Paulson Goes on His Knees!

"In the Roosevelt Room after the session, the Treasury secretary, Henry M. Paulson Jr., literally bent down on one knee as he pleaded with Ms. Pelosi not to “blow it up” by withdrawing her party’s support for the package over what Ms. Pelosi derided as a Republican betrayal."

This seems like a scene out of the Nixon Kissinger Era, when the President resigned. How I wish this would happen again.

Where Are the Grown-Ups?

The grown-up thing to do is to rescue the financial system. If Mr. Paulson isn’t the grown-up we need, are Congressional leaders able to fill the role?

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Talks Implode During a Day of Chaos; Fate of Bailout Plan Re

Lawmakers are gearing up for a second day of negotiations on a financial rescue plan after a deal fell apart on Thursday amid a flurry of finger pointing. This sounds like an Onion article.

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Oil prices retreat: Nearing $104

SINGAPORE (AP) — Oil prices fell to near $104 a barrel Thursday in Asia as investors weighed supply delays in the Gulf of Mexico against concerns that the U.S. credit crisis may slow global economic growth and hurt crude demand.

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Speculation: A Closer Look at Oil Price Hikes

MANILA — The market price of crude oil has more than doubled over the past year to reach record-high levels of over US$147 per barrel last July. And oil prices continue to fluctuate, with industry players blaming a number of factors, including jitters caused by the current financial crisis in the US. Skyrocketing oil prices have thus become a...

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

VCs shovel another $28.7 million into Digg

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Digg Inc., an Internet startup that specializes in rating news stories, is making a little news of its own with a $28.7 million round of financing. The investment announced Wednesday should squelch recurring rumors of a sale to Google Inc. or Microsoft Corp.

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Pascual Monje Solis

This Mexican Robin Hood, appeared dead yesterday in the state of Guerrero.

The Government announced:

"“Este mediodía se tuvo conocimiento que en las orillas del Río Balsas, cerca de la comunidad La Calera, del municipio de Zirándaro, se encontraba un hombre ahogado; esta persona fue identificada por su medio hermano (Marcelo Cárdenas Solís) como la persona que respondía al nombre de Pascual Monje Solís, de 48 años de edad, el que presentaba escoriaciones causadas por el arrastre del río."

My translation:

Today at noon it was known that on the shores of Balsas River, near the community of La Calera, in Zirandaro County, there was a drowned man; this person was identified by his half brother (Marcelo Cardenas Solis) as the person known as Pascual Monje Solis, 48, with scars caused by the river."

There goes another hope for the poor people of Mexico.

I had written about Monje before, you can read here.

Collider Operations on Hold Until Next Year

The world’s newest and largest particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider, will not begin operations again until April, officials at CERN said.

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Dear Iraqi Friends

As Americans lose their homes and sink into debt, they no longer understand why we are spending $1 billion a day to make Iraqis feel more secure in their homes.

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

15 Great Quotes from Torvalds and Stallman

“Software is like sex: it's better when it's free.”

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Google mobile due to be unveiled

It will be available on the US network of T-Mobile and is expected to be on sale in October. The first device to run the search giant's operating system will be a handset from Taiwanese firm HTC called the "Dream".

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Oil price jumps $25 in a day

Crude oil prices jumped $25 a barrel on Monday – the largest one-day rise – as financial investors betting on falling oil prices were forced to cover their positions ahead of the expiry of the current benchmark futures contract.

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Monday, September 22, 2008

Samso, the Danish island living off-grid (PICS)

Photographer Nicky Bonne travels to the Danish island of Samso, where the residents have completely eradicated its carbon footprint by using wind power. Everyone on the island owns a turbine, and with its simple grid of solar power, wind farms and sheep, it's selling its power to the mainland

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Advanced Python Programming

Advanced Programming Topics in Python

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Rubik's Mirror Blocks: Multi-Shape Blocks Of Frustration

Remember the good ol' Rubik's Cube? Ah, good times. There have been some variations over the years, but this latest version gets a truly modern makeover. Called Mirror Blocks, it does away with colored tiles and instead consists of differently shaped blocks. The aim of the game is to bring the puzzle back into a cube shape by matching up these diff

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Rubik Like Puzzle

Bailout Plan Talks Advance in Congress

Discussions with the Bush administration have addressed measures such as increased oversight and aid for homeowners at risk of foreclosure.

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Mexico May Say Oil Output Fell, Pressuring Congress: Week Ah

Sept. 22 (Bloomberg) -- Petroleos Mexicanos, Mexico's state- owned oil company, may report that crude output fell for the 25th consecutive month in August, adding pressure on Congress to take up delayed legislation aimed at increasing production.

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GEARS+ANDROID+CHROME+LINUX: Everything Makes Sense Now!

Until Chrome came along, Google's Master Mobile Plan didn't quite add up. Now it does. Chrome -- Google's new superbrowser -- is cream on the top of a new mobile software stack. Let's call it GACL, for Gears, Android and Chrome on Linux.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008

Rescue Plan Seeks $700 Billion to Buy Bad Mortgages

The proposal would allow the Treasury to buy and resell mortgage debt as it sees fit, and would raise the national debt ceiling to $11.3 trillion.

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Friday, September 19, 2008

Best Buy Pays $121M For Napster

Once the king of illegal file-sharing protocols, Napster operated in the law's gray area for a few years before 'going legal' not long ago. The firm's owners have now cashed in on their reputation -- good or bad -- after being bought out by Best Buy for $121 million.

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Stanford Engineering Launches Free Computer Science Classes

This fall, SEE launches its programming by offering one of Stanford’s most popular sequences: the three-course Introduction to Computer Science taken by the majority of Stanford’s undergraduates and seven more advanced courses in artificial intelligence and electrical engineering.

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Whos.amung.us Blog Maps Widget with a New Look

widget among bloggers, whos.amung.us has got a new look.

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I've been thinking about my friends at Lucent and myself.

The big wigs got other challenging opportunities. Carly Fiorina, a rising star during my tenure at Lucent, went to become Hewlett-Packard CEO. She failed. Now she is advising John McCain, I hope she fails again, but the point here is that my friends and I didn't land those high paid positions. I for one, went from bad to worse; now I am happy teaching math, but not wealthy by any means.

We are pawns to the kings and queens; and do you know what? I don't envy them. I'll blame those heads of industry and finances for the mess we are in.

Paul Krugman (below, Crisis Endgame), like always explains to us simple mortals, the big mistakes the big wigs have made.

“Black Monday,” Hurrican Ike, and Falling Oil Prices: What I

On Monday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average - the bluest of Wall Street’s blue chips - lost 4.4% in a single day. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have been “seized” by the government. Oil continues to drop while gas prices rise. Inflation runs high while jobless claims continue to soar and gold falters. What a strange economic cocktail! Let’s look at ..

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Crisis Endgame

On Sunday, Henry Paulson, the Treasury secretary, tried to draw a line in the sand against further bailouts of failing financial institutions; four days later, faced with a crisis spinning out of control, much of Washington appears to have decided that government isn’t the problem, it’s the solution. The unthinkable — a government buyout of much..

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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Fed and Treasury Offer to Work With Congress on Bailout Plan

Top officials at the Treasury Department and Federal Reserve began discussing with Congressional leaders a plan to buy up large numbers of distressed mortgages held by ailing financial institutions.

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Cloud computing with Linux

Cloud computing and storage convert physical resources (like processors and storage) into scalable and shareable resources over the Internet (computing and storage "as a service"). Although not a new concept, virtualization makes this much more scalable and efficient through the sharing of physical systems through server virtualization. Cloud compu

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It's twins! Two massive new primes (in numbers) discovered

So after two years of silence, the emergence of a pair of new Mersenne primes nearly simultaneously—one on August 23, one on September 6—is an unexpected burst of productivity.

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The King Is Dead

Why do freshmen bursting to change the world morph into investment bankers? It’s time for young minds to rediscover the public sphere.

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Google’s $199 phone to compete with the iPhone

The price of the new Google smart phone would put the device head-to-head with Apple’s $199 iPhone. The Google phone, which features a touchscreen and is made by Taiwanese manufacturer HTC, faces some stiff competition. The iPhone 3G has generated significant interest among consumers for redefining touch-screen technology,popularizing mobile apps

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Mathematicians predicted stock market volatility years ago:

Crash, crash. Doom, doom. Panic on the Street. Wall Street yesterday suffered its worst decline since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks – and the free fall suggests it may be time to consider burying the family stash of Krugerrands under the rose garden or tool shed.

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Financial Times: Depression Panic Hits World Markets

Barometers of financial stress hit record peaks across the world. Yields on short-term US Treasuries hit their lowest level since the London Blitz, while gold had its biggest one-day gain ever in dollar terms. Lending between banks, in effect, stopped.

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Mozilla to remove Firefox EULA

Ubuntu users who couldn’t stand the idea of a EULA (End User License Agreement) for the popular Firefox Web browser are going to get their way. The Mozilla Foundation’s chairperson, Mitchell Baker, has agreed to entirely remove the Firefox EULA.

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Taking Stock

A friend of mine just informed me that they let him go at Lucent Technologies in Naperville, Illinois.

That brought back sad memories, it was more than seven years ago that I went through a similar experience.

My friend is a good worker, a good father, and a good friend.

What did he do wrong? What did I do wrong?

We could have been more entrepreneurial I guess, and started our own company, or something. Somehow I feel the problem is deeper.

These are trying times.

Benoit Mandelbrot

This mathematician did write a book some years ago about the stock market. I did not read it because I thought the markets were too complicated to be understood, even by the creator of the Fractal that bears his name.

I guess I was wrong, I should have read it. Now I would be more prepared to make sense of the gyrations at Wall Street.

You can read above a note from Scientific American about what Mathematics can teach us in daily life.


Today I read La Jornada, with very strange news. A young man, 26, with a teenager were captured in Zacatecas after a car accident.

Supposedly they threw the grenades that killed seven people. This somehow reminds me of the kids in Babel that without thinking, shoot a tourist bus.

Is the world so unpredictable?

I guess I was right in leaving that celebration in Chilpancingo the other day (below). Of course nothing happened there. I can't escape the thought though, that maybe I confused those kids, that might have been planning something. I'll never know.

Is the Financial Collapse in the US Related to Oil Prices?

Oil prices went down. Refineries are not producing much more, maybe the explanation is that rich countries don't have money to pay for oil. The money was wasted in Iraq, and now that country is not producing enough oil to offset the losses elsewhere, and the US does not have money.

To me it sounds like George W. Bush, acted like the drunk he used to be and wasted the wealth of the U.S. of A.

Impeach him!

MARKET WATCH: Energy prices continue to fall

HOUSTON, Sept. 17 -- Energy prices continued to drop Sept. 16 with crude reaching a new 7-month low close to $90/bbl in the New York market, having lost $10/bbl through the first two trading sessions of this week, down 38% from record highs in July.

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Central Banks Pump Cash Into Market

The Federal Reserve and other central banks massively escalated the aid offered to global money markets on Thursday, with the Fed authorized $180 billion in new lending.

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Wall Street Braces for HUGE, Devastating Job Losses

Tens of thousands of jobs expected to be lost.

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Breaking: First Android Phone to be sold Sept. 23

How many days are you willing to wait in front of a T-Mobile store to be the first own a gPhone? You might have to decide soon. According to the Reuters news agency, T-Mobile is set to announce availability of its mobile phone based on Google's Android operating system as soon as September 23.

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Infopackets' Guide to the Web's Top Browsers

The world's most popular Internet browser, its nearest challenger, and the 'new kid on the block' have all launched recently, or are in the process of launching new editions. Here's our guide to the latest offerings from Microsoft, Mozilla, and Google.

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Google software: Linux repositories for all distros

Google's Linux software repositories make it easier to download and stay up-to-date with current releases of Google Linux applications. Please choose one of the guides below to help configure your system to use these repositories.

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LHC: First subatomic particle collision to happen next week

The first collisions between subatomic particles will take place in the giant Large Hadron Collider next week, which will mark another milestone for the biggest experiment in history.

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T-Mobile sets stage for Android, iPhone showd

An invitation sent out on Tuesday by T-Mobile asks the media to gather next week to see the first phone built on the Android mobile platform, but will also pit Apple and Google against each other -- if reluctantly

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2008 Morelia bombings

The 2008 Morelia bombings took place on 15 September 2008 on the occasion of the independence day anniversary when thousands of people where reunited in the Plaza Melchor Ocampo, the main square of the Mexican city of Morelia, Michoacán. Shortly after the Grito in that city, led by Governor Leonel Godoy, two blasts were reported, killing at least 7

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Russia halts stock trading amid emerging-markets rout

Bad as things are on Wall Street today -- and they’re very bad -- "be glad you’re not in Russia," as my grandmother used to say.

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17 years of Linux

On 17 September 1991 Linus was announcing the first version of the Linux kernel. (And yes in Romania it's 17 September already :D)

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Linux and the Stock Market

Today we celebrate seventeen years since Linus Torvalds put his work online. It was September 17, 1991. I am writing this in a Toshiba Satellite Pro 43000 series, running Mandriva Linux 2008.

Today also, as you can read in the note below, the Stock Market is going down. It may get below 10 000 points. That is bad.

I hope that things will even-out.

Dow industrials tumbling more than 300 points (Again)

Government bailout of AIG adds to fears about the stability of the financial markets. WaMu, Goldman and Morgan Stanley all tumble.

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Big Storms Are Taking Heavy Toll on Midwest

Communities across the Midwest were reeling after storms left at least 17 people dead, homes and businesses without power and roadways flooded.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

McCain’s Radical Agenda

John McCain’s health plan is a monumental change in the way coverage would be provided to millions of people. Why aren’t we paying more attention?

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A Day in the Life of Chilpancingo

Last night I went like more than a thousand people to the Anahuac Congress Plaza, to clebrate the beginning of the Mexican Independence Day on September 15, 1810.
It was fun and games, even free food. I was having a good time. Then these three kids started to bother young girls. I didn't think it was serious but I told them nicely to stop. They humored me and the party went on. Then a little later I asked one of them what school did he go to. He said none, I'm in a gang. I just smiled, but was thinking to myself, that it was better if I left, I did not want any surprises.

I leisurely walked home. At eleven at nigh I heard our State Governor, Zeferino Torreblanca Galindo, give his Independence Cry on TV.

I felt a little awkward about my behavior this morning, until I heard that in the similar celebration in the state next door, Michoacan, governed by the same party, PRD. Two grenades went off in the very same Independence Day Celebration, and at least eight people are dead.

I felt like forty years ago, I chickened out and didn't go to the October 2, 1968, demonstration. Then more than five hundred people died, and to this day, I am glad I was not there.

Better safe than sorry.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Rescues Continue in Texas; Millions Without Power

Thousands of people were rescued from flood-ravaged towns in the largest rescue operation in Texas history following Hurricane Ike.

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Premiumize or Perish

In today’s world, your identity is defined less by what you think than by what you buy, even in a recession.

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Paul Krugman: Financial Russian Roulette

If institutions need to be rescued like banks, they should be regulated like banks — why were we so unprepared for this latest shock?

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Sunday, September 14, 2008

Cota 1061 » Blog Archive » Is Mexico the new China?

Mexico City - Just as Mexico was becoming the rising star of global manufacturing in the 1990s, China’s even cheaper wages turned that country into the world’s factory.

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

Millions in Texas Lose Power in Storm

After losing strength, Ike was downgraded to a tropical storm, as Houston continued to huddle from the lashing wind and rain.

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She’s Not Ready

With Gov. Sarah Palin, it’s not about agreeing or disagreeing with her on the issues. It is that she doesn’t appear to understand the important issues.

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Mexico Oil and Gas Report Q3 2008 -

The latest Mexico Oil & Gas Report from BMI forecasts that the country will account for 26.21% of Latin America regional oil demand by 2012, while providing 28.34% of supply. Latin America regional oil use of 6.84mn barrels per day (b/d) in 2001 reached an estimated 7.28mn b/d in 2007. It should rise to ...

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Friday, September 12, 2008


Millions of people getting out of their homes. I am sure monetary losses are huge. Can the US fight a war in Iraq, one in Afghanistan, and a war on Global Warming?

I am afraid not. This may be the Chinese Century or something, it does not look like another American Century.

So it goes. Ike is wreaking havoc.

Colossal Hurricane Ike lashes Texas coast

HOUSTON (AP) -- A monster-sized Hurricane Ike bore down on the Texas coast late Friday, threatening to rattle the sparkling skyscrapers of America's fourth-largest city, shut down the heart of the U.S oil industry for days and obliterate waterfront towns already flooded with waist-high water.

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My Life

I just found out that my Master's Thesis advisor is a descendant of Carl Friedrich Gauss. I feel that I am not living up to what I can do.

I may not have much time to catch up.

Here I go.

A Million Flee as Storm Hits Texas Coast

Hurricane Ike churned toward Galveston and Houston, raising fears that a 20-foot-high wall of water could devastate Galveston.

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

End of the World?

It is funny, sometimes I sound apocalyptic in these pages. Now I am asked to give a talk in Chilpancingo on the LHC milestone on September 10, 2008.

I do not think that was dangerous at all. But some people here were more scared than curious, about our knowledge on the origin of the Universe.

I am now in the awkward position to sound reasonable and reassuring when I am worried, but not about black holes coming from Switzerland. The only thing that comes from there are chocolates, maybe in the past, clocks. Now the Asians dominate the watch business.

Anyway, I'll do my best.

Lenovo’s prepping its first MID?

We’re expecting to see MIDs aplenty (Mobile Internet Devices, a smaller cousin of the UMPC) at this year’s CES, but we didn’t know Lenovo would be getting in on the action. The Chinese company is most closely identified with the business-friendly ThinkPad line it bought from IBM, at least in the States, so the shiny device spotted in this video ...

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From Eduard's page

From my parents:

  • If you do not find a job, then make it.
  • If you need a skill that you do not have, then develop it.
  • If you have a job, then work hard everyday.
  • If you believe you are going to fall down in your live, we are always here in what is going to be always your home.

    From the life:

  • Make plans, but be prepared for a plan B, C, etc., or to re-plan everything.
  • If you have problems, work hard to solve them, and only after working hard for many days and in desperate cases ask to God for help, ask for a hint, not for a solution.
  • Enjoy your life since it is only one chance.
  • Do not complicate your life, it is enough complicate by itself.
  • 100 trillion particle collisions to find 18 events

    Those are the odds these days to find Glory and Fame.

    One needs good and fast computers to do that.

    Prof. De la Cruz and his colleagues pulled out that needle from the haystack.


    Eduard de la Cruz Burelo

    Dr. Burelo went to school in Mexico City, to the same school I got my master's degree from.

    Now he shares the glory of discovering a new particle in this Universe of ours.


    Fermilab upstages CERN - Discovers new exotic particle

    On the day that CERN is dominating the news, Fermilab announces the discovery of the Omega b baryon, which is an exotic relative of the proton. I doubt they will get a lot of media attention though. "Fermi-who?"

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    Lehman plunges as investors doubt survival

    NEW YORK (AP) -- Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.'s rescue plan got a dismal reception from Wall Street on Thursday, with shares of the battered bank plunging about 40 percent.

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    In the Seventh Year

    In the seventh year after the fall, it seemed that one nation had become two; and loss, far from unifying the people, had sundered America.

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    Wednesday, September 10, 2008


    Now I am 59 years old.

    We had a little celebration at school. Given that I just got here, I find this touching.

    I feel that I have studied enough, and thought enough, to leave a few interesting results before I die.

    Right now I am reading Professor Lipatov extension of complex numbers to three dimensions:

    On the ternary complex analysis and its applications.

    I met Professor Lipatov at Fermilab briefly, but since 1975 I have been impressed with his work.

    This paper is impressive.

    I guess this is a good birthday present; together with the LHC start up earlier this morning.

    And life goes on.

    Transfer Operator of the Gauss Map

    I found out that a Professor of mine, Jean Pestieau, is an academic descendant of Carl Friedrich Gauss. Of course Gauss had 8 students and 43374 descendants. But nevertheless I am proud of Professor Jean Pestieau. He works at the Université Catholique de Louvain.

    Professor Gauss invented a map:

    h(x) = 1/x - [1/x]

    Where [ ] represents the integer part.

    It happens that the Transfer Operator of this map, called the Gauss-Kuzmin-Wirsing (GKW) operator, is so difficult, that it has not been fully solved. The theory of the GKW dates back to a hypothesis by Gauss on continued fractions and is closely related to the Riemann zeta function.

    Deep mysteries of number theory.

    HiVision Shows Off Sub-$100 Linux Mini Laptop

    For $98, you get a MIPS-based processor, 1GB flash storage, 3 USB ports, Ethernet, an SDHC card reader, WiFi, audio in and out, voice-chat and Firefox browser support on a Linux user interface.

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    NYT - CERN Launches Particle Collider

    Science rode a beam of subatomic particles and a river of champagne into the future on Wednesday. After 14 years and $8 billion, scientists turned on the most powerful microscope ever built for investigating the elemental particles and forces of nature.

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    UPDATE 1-Mexico economy close to rebounding -Carstens

    (Adds minister's comments on gasoline, background) MEXICO CITY, Sept 9 (Reuters) - Mexican Finance Minister Agustin Carstens said on Tuesday Mexico's economic slowdown has almost bottomed out, and growth should pick up during the first quarter of...

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    Tuesday, September 09, 2008

    From the Gut

    Whoever slipped that Valium into Barack Obama’s coffee needs to be found and arrested by the Democrats because Obama has gone from cool to cold.

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    Bob Herbert: Hold Your Heads Up

    Without the contribution of liberals, the United States would be a much, much worse place than it is today.

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    Apple Event Coverage As It Happens

    Keep checking for all the happenings throughout the day.... who needs to be there when you get the front seat at your home ;-)

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    Live-Blogging the LHC Startup!

    9:20 am Pacific Time: Let’s be clear. Tonight’s start-up is a symbolic event, not a physics event; as I understand it, the beam will only be circulating in one direction, so there won’t even be any collisions. Still, it’s a very important symbolic event! So, just for fun, here will be a running commentary throughout the day, with links and musings

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    Korn Shell Scripting Tutorial Done Like Never Before

    Korn shell scripting is something all UNIX users should learn how to use. Shell scripting provides you with the ability to automate many tasks and can save you a great deal of time. It may seem daunting at first, but with the right instruction you can become highly skilled in it. This article will teach you to write your own Korn shells scripts.

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    Oh Baby You're Amazing

    Zoologist Desmond Morris admits that his latest study has left him in awe of the power and potential of the human infant.

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    Global computer network ready for the Big Bang

    "This is the next step after the Web," says David Colling, a scientist at Britain's Imperial College, which is contributing to the Grid. "Except that unlike the Web, you're sharing computing power and not files."

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    Tom Friedman's New Book Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Scientific A

    Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist Tom Friedman discusses his new book, Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green RevolutionAnd How it Can Renew America. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.thomaslfriedman.com

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    Apple confirms September 9 Special Event: Let's Rock

    Apple has sent out invites to a Special Event taking place on September 9, which is exactly one week for today. The invite features the iconic iPod silouette along with the tagline "Let's Rock." It will be taking place at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco—just down the street from the Moscone Center— at 10am next Tuesday.

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    AMD issues dramatic price cuts for triple-core CPUs

    AMD’s triple-core Phenom X3 processor was designed as the firm’s answer to Intel’s 45 nm Core 2 Duo CPUs and as a buffer to protect the tray prices of its quad-core Phenom X4 models.

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    Google To Bring 30 Years Of Newspaper Journalism Online

    Google has announced a new mammoth undertaking that will bring the past 30 years of print journalism online - through a partnership with around 100 newspaper publishers. The new feature which ties in with the company's book-scanning operation will make fully searchable newspaper pages available online that will appear just as they did when they wer

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    The coming day for all of us

    Pero como sabemos la vida un día empieza y otro acaba.
    "But as we know life starts one day and ends another."
    A friend of mine reacted like that to the end of his father's life.
    I remember mine, gone more than twenty years ago. Ramiro Humberto; I remember you!

    Mexico Government Will Set Oil Price in Budget Plan: Week Ah

    Sept. 8 (Bloomberg) -- Mexico, the second-biggest oil producer in the Western Hemisphere, will probably assume its crude exports will sell for $80 a barrel next year in a budget proposal the government plans to submit to Congress today.

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    Monday, September 08, 2008

    Fingers Crossed, Physicists Are Ready for Collider to Roll

    The world will probably not end on Wednesday, but a lot of people will be holding their breath anyway.

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    Video from now to Lift Off at CERN

    Wednesday the 10th of September at 3:30 AM Eastern Time you can see the webcast of  the "Machine Starting to Look for the Mysteries of Matter". Tune in early:


    That'll be fun. Run your own pajama party. That can count as my birthday party, I guess.

    Canada Now, Japan Earlier, What is Going On?

    You can read below about the change of government up north in Canada.

    Japan's Prime Minister, resigned a few days ago. Here in Mexico, Felipe Calderón, does not have the highest approval ratings either.

    Is the political world crumbling; does this mean a black man will be president of the US soon?

    As I wrote a few notes down, Economics is not my forte, well politics; is even more complicated, but I can see a duck, as they say, if it walks like a duck, and it quacks like a duck, then it is a duck.

    We are going down politically.

    Sarcozy is not faring that well either, with that French kid killed in Afghanistan by the Taliban recently; beheaded and all.

    I hope I am wrong, and politicians know what they are doing. I am sorry though, I don't trust them, sometimes they seem to know less about politics than I do, at least the soon to be Canadian ex Prime Minister.

    By the way, my cousin is Mayor of Huitzuco City, in Guerrero, Mexico. I am eager to talk to her, to know what she knows.

    Canada's Parliament is Dissolved

    Canada's prime minister dissolved Parliament on Sunday and called an early election next month in hopes of strengthening his Conservative minority government's hold on power.

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    On My Birthday!

    LHC starts on my birthday, this coming Wednesday, a human replica of the Big-Bang. What a birthday gift!

    Of course they don't know. Does it matter?

    CERN fires up new atom smasher to near Big Bang

    It has been called an Alice in Wonderland investigation into the makeup of the universe — or dangerous tampering with nature that could spell doomsday. Whatever the case, the most powerful atom-smasher ever built comes online Wednesday, eagerly anticipated by scientists worldwide who have awaited this moment for two decades

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    As you might've noticed already, Economics is not my forte. Sure, I read Paul Krugman, he seems to make sense, and politically he leans the way I do. I'll rather live in a place where economics' resources were in the hands of more actors, than they are today here where I am.

    I do not know, why it ends up like it is. I do not know of Economics Laws, like Newton's in Physics, that tell us almost everything there is to know about the future of the Solar System, for instance. This complex money movement problems, are very mysterious for me.

    In my deep Economic ignorance, I am at awe with the economic prowess of the US compared to the little economy of my country. I am living right now, in one of the poorest economies inside Mexico, that of Guerrero. The place is gorgeous, but we just don't seem to get a handle on this thing called "The Economy". We have the sometimes richest man on Earth, Carlos Slim, living around here in Mexico yes, but somehow that is not enough.

    As my knowledge stand right now, I rather invest in the US, than in Mexico, but, really I do not know. It is good that I do not have a lot of money to bet an economic predictions.

    By the way, "Friday is Pay Day" around here. I am thrilled!

    U.S. Takeover of Mortgage Giants Lifts Stock Markets

    Following rallies in Asia and Europe, the Dow Jones average jumped more than 340 points within two minutes of opening, before falling back.

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    Real Wars and the U.S. Culture War

    The surge in the culture wars of U.S. politics has come at the expense of debate of two real wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

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    Paul Krugman: The Power of De

    The attempt to contain the fallout from the financial crisis is a fight the feds seem to be losing.

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    Saturday, September 06, 2008

    Relevant Mathematics

    I created today in Google Sites a place to write on Mathematics and Education.Relevant Mathematics. You can visit to read on my current interests in this area.

    I started by uploading the paper Professor Fritz Schweiger presented at "The History and Pedagogy of Mathematics" this summer in Mexico City. The title is, "JACOBI'S LAST THEOREM
    The history of Jacobi-Perron algorithm".


    Playing With Light? Awesome Lego LED Lamps!

    The illuminated LED blocks takes the ’smart toy’ concept to the next level by imbuing their building blocks with LED lights: creating a combination toy / lamp that is as useful as a room illumination as it is fun to play with

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    Running From Reality

    From the speakers’ faux populist gibberish, you would never have known that the Republicans have used their titanic power to lead the country to its present sorry state.

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    Friday, September 05, 2008

    Open Source Textbooks Challenge a Paradigm

    A small, digital book startup thinks it has a solution to the age-old student lament: overpriced textbooks that have little value when the course is over. The answer? Make them open source -- and give them away.

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    Omega and why maths has no TOEs

    Over the millennia, many mathematicians have hoped that mathematics would one day produce a Theory of Everything (TOE); a finite set of axioms and rules from which every mathematical truth could be derived. But in 1931 this hope received a serious blow: Kurt Gödel published his famous Incompleteness Theorem, which states that in every ...

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    Closest Look Yet at Milky Way's Black Hole

    For a while now scientists have thought a dense, massive object lurking at the center of our galaxy is likely a giant black hole, but they haven't been able to prove it. New observations offering the closest view yet of the heart of the Milky Way present strong evidence for the black hole theory, and even hope of finally settling the question soon.

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    Powerful Xbox 360 Now Cheaper than Nintendo's Wii

    Hoping to end Nintendo's reign atop the console rankings, Microsoft has announced it will be slashing the price of its Xbox 360 console in North America. As of Friday, September 5th, the system famous for Halo 3, Gears of War, and Project Gotham Racing will slide as low as $199.

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    Mexican Peso Falls to Three-Month Low on Slumping Oil Prices

    Sept. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Mexico's peso declined to a three- month low as oil, the country's biggest export, sank to near its lowest in five months.

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    Mexican Peso Falls to Three-Month Low on Slumping Oil Prices

    Sept. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Mexico's peso declined to a three- month low as oil, the country's biggest export, sank to near its lowest in five months.

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    Thursday, September 04, 2008


    Any Calculus or Analysis class worth its salt, should have some inequalities exercises.

    Amazon to sell OLPC's XO laptop

    The so-called $100 laptop from the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) initiative will be available via Amazon.com in the US from November.

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    Video: Official Google Chrome Press Presentation

    If yesterday's comic strip explanation of Google's Chrome browser wasn't enough for you, here is a video of the official press presentation (52 mins) from their headquarters in Mountain View, California.

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    Wednesday, September 03, 2008

    And Then There Was One

    With his choice of Sarah Palin, John McCain has completed his makeover from the greenest Republican to run for president to just another representative of big oil.

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    Sergey Brin on Why Google's Launching a Browser

    A couple of questions Businessweek.com had a chance to ask Sergey Brin, Google’s cofounder and president of technology, after the demo at the Googleplex today. I had trouble with editing software, so there’s a piece of a question before my two questions, then a couple more from other reporters.

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    Tuesday, September 02, 2008

    Gauss Method for 16

    Now the cubic root is for 16. It looks worse, doesn't it?

    Gauss Method for a Cubic Root

    Now instead of 21/2, I repeated the exercise with 41/3. Now all hell brakes loose, almost from the beginning,

    Gauss Algorithm for Square Root of 2

    I did this all in Chrome.

    First with Google Docs I made a spreadsheet with the formulae:

    1/x -[1/x]

    0< x <1

      x = 21/2 - 1

    I generated thirty values using the previous row to calculate the present row.

    I plotted in each row (x + 1)2.

    Initially rounding errors give 2, then it deteriorates as you can see.

    BREAKING: Google Chrome Just Launched

    Google Chrome is a browser that combines a minimal design with sophisticated technology to make the web faster, safer, and easier.

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    Google Chrome is Here!

    Google Chrome is due out tomorrow, and if the comic book about it tells the truth, it's cool! Could Google Chrome be the next shot fired in the browser wars?

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    Inside Chrome

    I did this inside Chrome. It is a completely new Browser Experience!

    I Have Chrome!

    It was fast an easy, I'm in Chrome.

    Does the Bush Administration help Microsoft?

    In Europe Microsoft had to play like a civilized institution. It was fined and competition increased. In the US the Bush Administration refused to follow suit. Now we have a non-competitive company attacked by Google. It will help the American people if this Administration gets out of the way.

    The recent Chrome new browser announcement by Google; maybe is an indication that W. is a lame duck.

    Good riddens.

    Mexico: the next emerging-market trouble spot? | Money

    Tracking the market and economic trends that shape your finances.

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    Google Chrome

    What is going on?

    If you had read some of my pieces here, you know I tend towards the apocalyptic side of things; maybe 68 generation I don't know. In any case I followed the Netscape Explorer war several years ago. I was convinced Gates fortune was over. Wiser now, I know that the man is well, and wealthy. So I do not expect the kids at Google to take over, as we say in Spanish, the Devil knows more because he is old, than because he is wise.

    I am installing Chrome as soon as I can, but I do not expect the demise of Explorer, then again, if it happens, I won't complain.

    Mexico to spend $25 bln on fuel subsidies in '08

    MEXICO CITY, Sept 1 (Reuters) - Mexico's government will spend about $25 billion (260 billion pesos) this year on gasoline subsidies to blunt the effect of inflation on consumers, President Felipe Calderon said on Monday. The figure was higher...

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    Monday, September 01, 2008

    Microsoft Faces New Browser Foe in Google

    Google will release a free Web browser called Chrome that the company said would challenge Internet Explorer.

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    Japan’s Prime Minister Resigns

    Yasuo Fukuda’s departure appeared to plunge the country into further political confusion.

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    ABC News: Japan's Prime Minister Resigns

    At a surprise news conference Monday night in Tokyo, Japan's widely unpopular prime minister, Yasuo Fukuda, announced his resignation after less than a year in office.

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    Are We at War?

    Here in Mexico we are always out of it. No Mexican soldier died in Iraq, and I am proud of that. But there is a war going on internationally. Roger Cohen's piece below attests to that much.

    In Mexico it has the face of new people that did not have money that now do. In Europe, Russia has Oil and that is that.

    Obviously there is more to that. Nevertheless this is a good place to start this analysis.

    Japan's prime minister resigned. As you can read above.

    In my humble opinion, global warming, resource scarcity, water included, are a witch's brew for War.

    Beware, you read it here first.

    NATO’s Disastrous Georgian Fudge

    The West should not overplay its hand with Moscow over Georgia. Resolve tempered by engagement won the cold war. It can help now.

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    John, Don’t Go

    Let’s hope that John McCain doesn’t jet into the disaster area in Gustav’s aftermath. We don’t need a photo op. We need an effective public response to disaster.

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    Don't Worry About Dependence on Foreign Oil

    Politicians regularly turn public fear into votes. President Bush proved a master at this in his 2004 reelection success. Most presidents who don't win the popular vote the first time don't get a second term, but fear pushed Bush over the top in 2004.

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