Michael Ho’s Techdirt Profile

mhhfive

About Michael HoTechdirt Insider

Mike oversees the research department at Floor64. He has held various research roles at companies including BFGoodrich, Raychem and Nano-Tex. Before joining Floor64, Mike coordinated product development as a project leader at Nano-Tex. He earned his undergraduate degree from Cornell University and completed work towards a PhD at Stanford University. He continues to pursue his technical and scientific interests in a wide variety of fields.

http://www.linkedin.com/in/mikeho



Posted on Techdirt - 25 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Hatching Some Intelligent Creatures

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

There's no guarantee that life will evolve any kind of intelligence. However, given the numerous examples of smart animals in nature, while we're worried about hyper-intelligent robots rising up, we'll miss the genius bird/lizard/ape revolution. Or maybe we'll just be left behind by space-faring dolphins. In any case, check out a few of these curiously smart animals.

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Posted on Techdirt - 24 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Drugs Are Baaaad, mmKay?

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

If we really wanted to tackle drug problems, we might want to try alternatives to alcohol that might have antidotes. However, we've tried to outlaw alcohol before, and it didn't turn out too well. Marijuana is beginning to become slightly less illegal (not on the federal level), and some studies show it's not nearly as harmful a drug as some folks believe it is. Put down your bongs, stop giggling at that cartoon you've been watching all day, and check out some of these links on the effects of marijuana.

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Posted on Techdirt - 23 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: The Right Stuff From The Original Space Race

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

It's surprising how poorly documented some of the Apollo missions are now -- with lost original footage of the first lunar landing (eventually restored from other recordings). Now we're entering a new phase of space that's more privatized, so it's even more likely that commercial space programs will not be preserved for the benefit of all. Maybe someday all of NASA's tweets will be safely stored on magnetic tape, and SpaceX's first reusable rocket landing video will be preserved in HD. Or maybe we'll have to check on Elon Musk's closet after he dies to look for Martian souvenirs.

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Posted on Techdirt - 20 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Sriracha In Everything

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

The hot sauce that has gotten insanely popular over the past few years is getting into everything. Several fast food chains -- Pizza Hut, Dominoes, Taco Bell, Subway, Jack In The Box, Panda Express, Wendy's -- have added Sriracha to their menu in some way. There's no trademark on Sriracha, so there's no legal friction to using the name/product. Maybe some products aren't using the real sauce, but it's still free advertising for the authentic Sriracha. (And do you really want to risk alienating the rabid fans of Sriracha just to save a few bucks using a knock-off hot sauce?)

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Posted on Techdirt - 19 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Plastic Is Everywhere, Run For Your Lives

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Plastic is a relatively new material in our environment, but many kinds of plastic don't decompose -- so it sticks around for a long, long time. But it's so useful -- and who wants to drag around metal or glass bottles? (Ahem, even if you did, many glass/metal bottles are lined with plastic anyway.) We could do a better job of recycling plastic and making sure plastic doesn't end up in the ocean, but we'll probably never get rid of plastic unless we run out of oil.

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Posted on Techdirt - 18 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Technology For Lawyers

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Every profession faces some disruption with technological improvements. Robots have slowly been taking over dangerous and labor-intensive jobs in manufacturing for decades, but advanced algorithms are starting to creep into careers that were previously safe from automation. Sure, translation software has provided some hilarious examples of how bad they are, but the first chess programs weren't so good, either. Lawyers could outlaw their robotic replacements, but they might have to act fast. Here are just a few links on technology getting into the field of law.

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Posted on Techdirt - 17 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Science With Lego

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

People do all sorts of creative stuff with Lego -- even though Lego hasn't always been cool about people using Lego or Lego-like bricks in various ways. But when Lego interconnecting block enthusiasts are allowed to do anything they want to do, sometimes science benefits. Here are just a few cool Lego-based science links for folks who aren't ready to put away their childhood toys.

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Posted on Techdirt - 13 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Eat This, Don't Eat That...

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Fad diets and diet recommendations seem to change every few years. Whole eggs were bad for you, but now they should be considered as part of a balanced diet. What makes a diet balanced? More carbs? Less Fat? Maybe you should just walk every day to your nearest Subway and only eat sandwiches. Or maybe you can just track your calories and eat whatever you want. Or not.

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Posted on Techdirt - 12 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: NYC Subways Filled With Unknown Species

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

No one would want to lick a handrail on the New York City subway because it's just gross -- and who knows what kind of germs and stuff are living in the urban grime? Well, now we have a better idea. Thousands of samples have been analysed, and the results are published. A city-wide metagenomic profile of NYC could tell us demographic data and confirm census polls, and a map of the data is available online. Follow a few of the links below for a bit more info.

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Posted on Techdirt - 11 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Keeping Your Memories

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

If you're only a couple decades old, you probably haven't experienced too many problems with your memory. But if you're more than a few decades old, you might have started to get "senior moments" as some call them -- where you forget why you went upstairs to your bedroom as soon as you get there, or you can't remember your ATM PIN, or the name of that guy is just on the tip of your tongue but you can't seem to recall it. These could be early signs of more serious memory loss, but the medical science is only just about to start really understanding how memory and aging works. Here are some links you might want to check out (and bookmark so you don't forget them).

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Posted on Techdirt - 10 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Celebrating Valentine's Day... Or Not

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Some folks say romance is dead, but maybe it's just in a deep meditative trance. In any case, it's almost that time of year again when chocolates and flowers and possibly awkward marriage proposals are being considered. For the romantic souls, this is an annual tradition that shouldn't be missed. For the more cynical, it's just another commercial holiday to boost sales of various pink-heart themed items.

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Posted on Techdirt - 9 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Sending Your Kid To School

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

A couple decades ago, the choices for elementary schools were pretty simple and limited -- public or private school. It's a bit more complicated now with public schools, charter schools, magnet schools and various different kinds of private schools that may be religious or based on a particular philosophy or pedagogical technique. (There's also the choice of opting-out with homeschooling....) In the end, there's no certainty in any complex decision -- some schools might have higher test scores, but quantitative statistics aren't everything. Here are just a few links for parents looking at a choice between elementary schools.

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Posted on Techdirt - 6 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: How To Cook Simple Stuff...

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

There are all kinds of cooking shows and recipe books, providing a vast and endless library of ways to make any meal you can think of. With this flood of information, the simplest meals can seem daunting because there are so many different recipes and instructions. There really is no single correct way to do anything, but some instructions are easier to remember than others. Here are just a few examples.

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Posted on Techdirt - 5 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Old Languages, New Languages

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Learning a new language as an adult is notoriously difficult to do, but there are various benefits for being bilingual. However, as the world communicates more globally, people are choosing to speak more common languages, and some languages are being spoken less and less. There may be no way to translate certain expressions, and we may lose some linguistic quirks if we don't try to preserve spoken languages that have few remaining native speakers. Here are just a few links on language diversity to check out if you're bored with l337 speak.

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Posted on Techdirt - 4 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Paper Airplanes For Fun And Profit

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

If you're interested in paper planes, you could try to beat the world record for distance -- and it looks like there may be annual contests for you to compete in pretty soon. You could also try to make a paper airplane that stays aloft for the longest time. Or you could come up with your own record (most loops? most accurate landing? best tricks?). Check out some of these links if you think you could be obsessed with paper planes.. in a healthy way.

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Posted on Techdirt - 3 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Three Blind Mice... Cured Someday?

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

An estimated 285 million people (worldwide) have some blindness or visual impairment. About 43% of those visually impaired around the world are people who need glasses but don't have them. However, there are obviously blind people who have more severe vision problems that are more technologically difficult to fix. Some kids with blindness are learning how to echolocate nowadays, but that's a skill that gets harder to learn as a person ages. Here are just a few other ways that might restore vision to people someday.

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Posted on Techdirt - 2 February 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: AI Image Recognition Is Still A Bit Buggy

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

As artificial intelligence gets more and more advanced, the differences between how computers recognize patterns and how humans do may become harder and harder to discern. However, it's obvious there are differences -- which might matter significantly if we're going to put these image recognition algorithms in control of autonomous cars or military threat detection systems. Check out a few of these image processing algorithms.

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Posted on Techdirt - 30 January 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Common Sense Ain't So Common

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Mammals drink milk when they're young. Maybe there are some exceptions to that, but the examples of milk-drinking mammals are pretty easy to find. People are mammals, and so the cow milk industry is sizable: the US alone produced over 200,000,000,000 pounds of cow milk in 2013. In other parts of the world, goat milk is more popular (and there are a lot of other kinds of milk that people drink, too). Okay, so why doesn't anyone drink pig milk?

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Posted on Techdirt - 29 January 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: Ingredients For Creative Environments

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

There are many, many studies on creativity and possible ways to improve the creative output of a group. Monetary incentives are often presented as a way to get people to produce more ideas, but some studies show that money isn't actually a great motivator. Obviously, there are a lot of factors that can influence how creative people are, but it would be nice to isolate a few and see if we can eliminate some practices that are downright detrimental to creativity. It would be great if we found out what really could inspire people, but maybe we shouldn't put too much pressure on the researchers... because that might dampen their productivity.

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Posted on Techdirt - 28 January 2015 @ 5:00pm

DailyDirt: These Things Are Not Really Making You Any Smarter, But Try Them Anyway?

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

It's not easy to get smarter, and there are very few things you can do that might make you smarter that have any kind of scientific evidence to support them. (However, you really should exercise more. There's plenty of evidence that points to exercise having benefits to your brain and your intelligence.) If you really want to get smarter, though, check out a few of these links before you attempt anything.

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