Links for 2nd June 2009

Fresh from the clogged tubes of teh intarwubs…

  1. Sight restored in less than a month using stem cell contact lenses

    "The idea stemmed from the observation that stem cells from the cornea (the thin, transparent barrier at the front of the eye) stick to contact lenses. Employing three patients who were blind in one eye, the researchers obtained stem cells from their healthy eyes and cultured them in extended wear contact lenses for ten days. The surfaces of the patients’ corneas were cleaned and the contact lenses inserted. Within 10 to 14 days the stem cells began to recolonize and repair the cornea." So simple, so awesome.

    Tagged with: scienceeyesightmedicinestem-cellregenerationtherapy

  2. Are Your Papers in Order?

    "Political “borders” do not protect people’s rights or secure people’s property. That’s neither their overall purpose nor their specific function. Their overall purpose is to enhance the state’s power, and their specific function is to give the state control — including taxing capabilities — over the people and property who move across them.

    Borders, in other words, are not created to benefit you. Precisely the opposite: They’re created to observe and control your movements, to milk your bank accounts, and to psychologically reinforce the claim that you are, for all practical purposes, the property of “your” government.

    That logic, to the extent that it serves its purposes, is inevitably turned inward and given effect further and further away from the borders themselves. Even as the techniques of control are improved and perfected at the borders, they begin to be applied elsewhere."

    Tagged with: politicsbordersgovernmentpowercontrolnation-states

  3. Deeper or wider

    "Once your business hits a natural plateau, it’s tempting to invest in getting more people to come. And what most buffets do is double down. Now, they have bacon, plus they have beans with bacon and turkey-wrapped bacon. Now, instead of one chocolate cake, they have three.

    This is essentially useless. You haven’t done anything to grow your audience. The base might be a little more pleased, but not enough to bring in any new business. And the disenfranchised (the vegans, the weight watchers, the healthy eaters, the kosher crowd) remain unmoved and uninterested. And one person like this out of a party of six is enough to keep all six away.

    So, there are two ways to go. Much deeper, or a bit wider." Seth Godin. Smart MF.

    Tagged with: businessmarketingstrategygrowthfocusdiversificationspecialisation

  4. Google eBook Business

    "Google’s eBook store will begin selling books by the end 2009. Google stated that it will allow publishers to set eBook prices. The cost of the eBook will probably be higher than Amazon’s current eBook prices.

    This will certainly start a format war. Google does not have a dedicated eBook reader and I do not see them getting into the eBook hardware game." They know how to time these things, don't they? That's your game-change moment right there.

    Tagged with: ebookpublishingGoogleformat-warhardwarereader

  5. Spy Chips Guiding CIA Drone Strikes, Locals Say

    "Ten days later, 19 year-old Habibur Rehman made a videotaped “confession” of planting such devices, just before he was executed by the Taliban as an American spy. “I was given $122 to drop chips wrapped in cigarette paper at Al Qaeda and Taliban houses,” he said. If I was successful, I was told, I would be given thousands of dollars.”

    But Rehman says he didn’t just tag jihadists with the devices. “The money was good so I started throwing the chips all over. I knew people were dying because of what I was doing, but I needed the money,” he added. Which raises the possibility that the unmanned aircraft — America’s key weapons in its covert war on Pakistan’s jihadists and insurgents — may have been lead to the wrong targets." Never saw *that* coming…

    Tagged with: militaryespionageCIAPakistansurveillancelocationtaggingSNAFU

  6. Political science: be careful what you vote for

    "Some of the Greens' proposals are staggeringly extreme for a party that supposedly aspires to the mainstream.

    Two examples stand out. It wants to ban all experiments on embryos, including those designed to improve fertility treatment as well as embryonic stem cell work. And its policies on alternative medicine are the height of naivety." Oh, the irony; the alternative to entrenched corruption is reactionary woo. Selah.

    Tagged with: sciencepoliticsGree-PartyEuropemedicinerationalismwoo

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