J Larsen

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Everything posted by J Larsen

  1. This person hasn't done very good research. First of all, quantum computing, a field I worked in after abandoning string theory, is facing essentially the same enormous technical challenges today as when Feynman first conceived of the idea in the 80s. You have to completely decouple a multi-particle quantum system from its environment for long enough to run several iterations of the same computation - no small feat given that this means, among other things, operating as close to absolute zero as possible and and not allowing the system to heat as it computes (which besides being difficult is REALLY expensive, not least of all because it relies on liquid helium which is a rare and limited resource) . Secondly, even if quantum computing is achieved, only two useful algorithms are known to exist: one for factoring and one for searching (as in google-type searching). The factoring algorithm is a devastating threat to RSA, but quantum encryption (which isn't nearly as technically challenging and is unrelated to quantum computing) is already commercially available so that should be a moot point. The search algorithm allows you to run a computer search in the square root of the time that it takes on a classical computer. I don't see this as a threat to anyone's privacy. It is rather predictable that computer searches would get faster and more powerful, even in the absence of quantum computing. I don't have much to say about nanorobots except that the only person I ever met who was working on such devices was trying to fabricate machines that would essentially chew through blockages in peoples' arteries. I think Guy was on the money - there obviously WILL always be people looking for objectionable applications of technology - that is already happening. This is not a reason to fear or object to nanotech (which is such a wildly diverse field that I find it problematic speaking of it as one thing), anymore than it is a reason to outlaw the internet, for example.
  2. Albert Ayler ESP CDs

    So I've had the Ayler ESP records on vinyl for about 10 years, but lately my records have been neglected due to the need to keep them locked up so the cat won't destroy them. I would like to buy cd versions. There seem to be three options. In ascending order of cost (at least at my local shop): ESP Box set Jewel Case Reissues Digipack reissues Is there any difference in the remastering of these three versions? If not, I'm just going for the box. Thanks.
  3. I'm sure it isn't as common as it used to be, but it still happens quite a bit. A friend got a complete set of 50s Eames chairs off the street a few years ago.
  4. I saw Girls Against Boys tonight. They were pretty awesome. Every bit as good as I remember them being about 13 years ago.
  5. My Herman and Piano boxes showed up today . Man Mosaic is fast. I had the Capitol box from the first time it went OOP - it has some interesting stuff on it but overall I could honestly live without it pretty easily.
  6. Haven't heard it. Honestly, Nas lost me after the first record. But I'll check it out online. But yeah, I have at least 1000 hip hop lps and 12"s. They fill an entire not-very-small closet. Probably my favorite semi-obscure record in my collection is the Jugganots album. But I've got a bunch of good original 80s and 90s sides. I used to have an even more expansive collection of early 80s - early 90s punk/"indie", but I sold it off through the back pages of MRR in the pre-ebay days to finance my college education.
  7. I don't think I've ever gotten Jump in the Fire out of my head. I remember Metallica as a local group. I loved this stuff as a kid.
  8. The various experiments of Markus Popp in the early 90s expanded the universe of sounds I could "connect to" in music. The first album I had was Oval's Systemische, so I suppose that goes in this thread. I was never really into jazz until a friend made me a tape of Kind of Blue in high school, so I guess that is another. The first music I loved was Black Sabbath back when I was literally four or five years old... it made me want to find out about more music like it and hence sort of started the musical odyssey I'm still on, so Paranoid (which I'm pretty sure was my first) would be another. I had a "country is inherrently bad" bias until hearing Johnny Cash @ Folsom Prison. I'm sort of embarrased to admit this now, but as I recall, rap (except for the Fat Boys, who I loved from elementary school) was very off-putting to me until Run-DMC's cover of Walk This Way came out (bear in mind that I was 11 in 1986), and from there I developed a library of probably well over 1000 hip hop albums. (The bulk of the record collecting aspect had to wait until I was old enough to work, but Walk This Way was probably the gateway.) The other significant musical realization for me was in punk/"indie" music, but that was something I think I primarily got into through live shows at the Gilman in Berkeley.
  9. Games--Backgammon, Go, Chess, Card Games

    My reply to this message was lost when the board crashed... anyway, I love that game and many of the others in the 3M line. Great stuff. BTW, I had my best come-from-behind win in Twixt against a friend just a week or two ago - I was a split second from conceding.
  10. Thanks - picked up the Piano Mood and Woody Herman sets.
  11. 40 years ago today

    It's always been a bummer for me that my birthday falls on the anniversary of John Coltrane and Billie Holiday's deaths.
  12. Happy Birthday J Larsen

    Thanks again, everyone... not quite sure how I'm going to make it to work in the morning... the earth seems to be spinning faster than normal tonight
  13. the jazz dulcimer

    Thanks for that cool piece of "trivia*"! *Not that I'm saying it's trivial or anything.
  14. Happy Birthday J Larsen

    Ha ha - thanks.
  15. I happen to know a little about possible causes from an ex-girlfriend who had a similar problem. I don't want to freak you out, but if you think your insurance probably wouldn't give you a hassle over a trip to the ER, it isn't a bad idea. If you aren't comfortable with your insurer, then leave a message for your doctor and follow up with another call first thing in the morning. You might be able to call your insurer right now to get pre-approval. This can be serious, or it could be merely annoying - but you need to see a doctor to figure out which.
  16. Happy Birthday J Larsen

    I didn't hear him... I was busy racing away on my brother's camel.
  17. Happy Birthday J Larsen

    Thanks, guys. Hard to believe how fast the bdays come around.
  18. Racist lyrics in Mercer set?

    I don't disagree with much of what is being said, but much of it seems irrelevant to the case in hand. Tranemonk paid $45 or so for an entertainment product. I can understand him being a little peeved about it including a white dude singing some arguably racist stuff about the ethnic group he (tranemonk) belongs to. I really doubt tranemonk needs to learn about our country's racist history from a Johnny Mercer song.
  19. Wine competitions are typically blind tests, but I'm not sure about this one in particular. I've had TBC. It's not bad, and I wouldn't turn my nose up at it, but I wouldn't give it a medal, either. OTOH, I'm not much of a Chardonay fan in general - especially the absurdly over-oaky ones from California.
  20. Albert Ayler ESP CDs

    I picked up the ESP CD versions of Spiritual Unity and Bells/Prophecy (as well as Live on the Rivera, which I didn't have before) - I have to say the sound quality on the studio albums really exceeded my expectations - far better than the old vinyl reissues I have. I'll be picking up the rest this week. Thanks for the advice.
  21. Racist lyrics in Mercer set?

    Not in my experience. FWIW, I am generally sympathetic to your position.
  22. What's for Dinner?

    Agreed, but on the weekends I always feel like they are rushing me, even if I have a reservation and am buying drinks, etc. The service was friendlier at Lure, but it isn't in the same league food-wise.
  23. I once saw a book that was nothing but full-page photographs of gorillas' faces. This is hard to understand without seeing the book, but it was one of the most beautiful and profoundly moving things I have ever seen. Does anyone happen to know the book and its title? I've done a little googling and have not been able to find it. Thanks. Edit: The most popular book that is somewhat (but not really) similar seems to be Almost Us. This is not the book I am thinking of. Thanks again.
  24. What's for Dinner?

    Not bad, but not recommended. Jack's Luxury has a way better raw bar, and Aquagrill is way better for cooked fish... and they are both cheaper.
  25. What's for Dinner?

    Trying out a seafood place a few blocks away that I've never been to before (Lure).