Friday, November 28, 2008

Obstruction of justice

New Paper reports a concerned parent performing "investigations" into daughter's accident. I'm not sure if the dad knows that he's perverting the course of justice (obstruction of justice in US legal terms).

Update: Tip of the hat to Axl who found the background on this. The incendiary headline does not help matters.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Toyota Premio

Been driving a Toyota Premio[1][2] lately and I think it's pretty nice... mid-size sedan between a Corolla and a Camry. It has 1.5L, 1.8L and 2L engine configurations and the one I drove is a 1.5L (1NZ-FE), rated at 81 kW or 110 PS @ 6,000 RPM. Peak torque 140 Nm (14.3kgm) @ 4,400 RPM.

On the road price of about 62K. Leather, keyless entry and reverse camera, only problem is the touch-screen display is in Japanese and Japanese radio band. Lots of cabin space and in the trunk. I'm impressed with the fuel economy though, 16.3 km/L mixed (the onboard computer stated 15.9 km/L)... it's due to the CVT. Main complaint is the rear drum brakes. But I would still recommend this car.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Occam's Razor

So Tim sent a link that claims North Korea digitally doctored a photo to prove that their leader is in good health. It now turns out that Scientific American actually bothered to seek an expert's opinion and he is of the opinion that the photo was unlikely to have been faked.

Sometimes we think too far ahead... why would North Korea bother to do this since Kim supposedly has body-doubles anyway? It would be far easier to get a double to stand in for him in the first place.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Greed and iTunes Music Store

When iTunes Store first debuted in 28 April 2003, it took them 8 days to sell 100K songs.

The one billion song milestone was reached on 22 February 2006, or 1301 days since the store was launched.

For the period between 22 Feb 2006 and 6 Jan 2007, or about 318 days, 1 billion songs were sold. Now, between 27 Feb 2008 and 19 Jun 2008, or 113 days, another billion songs were sold, marking the 5 billion song milestone. That is exponential growth. To put that in perspective, Firefox set a Guiness World Record for most software downloads in 24 hours... 8,002,530 in 24 hours or 5,557 per second at its peak.

iTunes Store is moving 6,145 songs per second every day, and is still growing.

If the projections hold up, the 6 billion song milestone was passed sometime in late September 2008.

Yet at approximately that time period, the RIAA was asking Apple to increase the royalty fees for each song sold despite making 70 out of every 99 cents[1][2]. Apparently earning US$4,300 per second was not enough for them.