Four short links: 30 July 2018

Lightbulb Moments, Crowd Simulations, Secrets and Accountability, and Whole Genome Sequencing

By Nat Torkington
July 30, 2018
Four Short Links
  1. Phoebus Cartel (Wikipedia) — a fascinating piece of history I never knew about: lightbulb manufacturers banding together to shorten lifetimes and raise profits. Reminds me of Adam Smith’s great line: “People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices.”
  2. The Wisdom And/Or Madness of Crowds — nifty little interactive that gives you a deeper understanding of network theory. I am a huge believer in simulations as teaching mechanism.
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  4. Practical Accountability of Secret Processes — aimed at the court system we illustrate how accountability and secrecy are simultaneously achievable when modern cryptography is brought to bear. Our system improves configurability while preserving secrecy, offering new tradeoffs potentially more palatable to the risk-averse court system.
  5. Dante Labs Whole Genome Sequencing — get every base pair in your DNA sequenced for USD500, and own the data (unlike 23andme and similar services, which only test some known single-basepair markers, and then own and resell your data). Making sense of the data left as an exercise to the reader.
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