Though they denied it in the past, Election Systems and Software now admits they installed remote-access software on some election management systems they sold to Michigan, Pennsylvania, and other states from 2000 to 2006. motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/…
The source code for PCAnywhere, the software installed on election management systems by ES&S, was stolen in 2006. Symantec kept it a secret until 2012. A critical vulnerability in PCAnywhere was found in 2011, allowing remote execution of arbitrary code. zerodayinitiative.com/advisories/ZDI…
Anyway, the fact that the company that makes half of the voting machines used in the US isn't exactly forthcoming about critical vulnerabilities baked into devices they sold in the past is not... encouraging. Paper ballots, y'all.
The astronomer Wendy Freedman was born #OTD in 1957. She was co-PI on the Hubble Space Telescope Key Project, which reported the value of the Hubble Constant as H₀ = 72 ± 8 km/sec/Mpc back in December of 2000. arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0…
Photo: John Zich
With a decade of new data, Freedman and her collaborators updated their result in 2012, quoting a value of H₀ = 74.3 ± 2.1 km/sec/Mpc. arxiv.org/abs/1208.3281
Fast forward to today's final data release from the @Planck collaboration. Their ΛCDM model gives H₀ = 67.27 ± 0.60 km/sec/Mpc. That's a 3.5σ disagreement with the astrophysical measurements of Freedman et al and other groups -- a real head-scratcher. cosmos.esa.int/documents/3875…
The physicist and astronomer Georges Lemaître was born #OTD in 1894. A Jesuit, in 1927 he proposed a model of an expanding Universe. Then, in 1931, he hypothesized its origin in a “unique atom” or “unique quantum” that would eventually become known as the ~Big Bang~.
Lemaître and the expanding universe are the subject of today’s Google doodle.
Image: the Google doodle team
(The first serious work on an expanding Universe, by Alexander Friedman, began four or five years earlier.)
Too bad there is nothing that @JeffFlake, @SenSasse, and @SenJohnMcCain can do, they are just three helpless bystanders who happen to belong to a Senate where the party abetting our traitorous president currently has a two vote majority.
Imagine telling a Republican from 20 or 30 years ago that in 2018 the POTUS, with the unquestioning support of the GOP, is a fully compromised asset of a former KGB agent and is gleefully helping him carry out attacks on our elections, our economic partners, and NATO.
Does all of us watching this meet the "two witnesses" requirement for treason.
Can't wait to see how many viewers tuned in for the series finale of America.
Long before Harry Potter there was @dduane’s Young Wizards series, which boy did I love as a kid. (I’m sorting through some old books.)
Oh gosh, I must have ended up on a block list, because for some reason I’m blocked by @dduane. Oof, 12 year old me would be crushed. For a few years those were the most important books in the world to me.
If anyone is twitter friends with her, please tell her that I loved her books and I’m a nice person who would like to follow her on here.
Joseph Larmor was born #OTD in 1857. A prominent figure during a transitional period in physics, he made a number of contributions that were saddled by adherence to 19th century ideas yet figured prominently in important developments of the 20th century.
Image: Royal Society
Larmor determined the rate at which an accelerating electron radiated energy, and contributed to the understanding of the splitting of spectral lines in a magnetic field observed by Zeeman.
But Larmor's attempt to develop a notion of discrete charge within Maxwell's theory conceptualized the electron (he adopted George Stoney's term) as a sort of vortex within the aether, entirely separate from the atom.
Their work was full of simplifying assumptions but captured essential features of BH formation. They [ahem] observe that a collapsing sphere of pressureless matter "tends to close itself off from any communication with a distant observer; only its gravitational field persists."
Ideas familiar from the popular understanding of black holes appear here: the intense red shifting of light; the fact that collapse seems to require cosmic patience from a distant observer but proceeds in comparatively short order for someone plunging inward.
The physicist John Archibald Wheeler, a titan of 20th century science, was born #OTD in 1911. He introduced the S-Matrix; developed the first general theory of fission (with Bohr); coined the terms "black hole" and "worm hole"; trained Feynman, Everett, Thorne, and many others.
Just out for a walk in the woods near the Institute for Advanced Study with Einstein, Yukawa, and Bhabha, as one does.
Image: the Wheeler family, via princeton.edu
Here is a thread about Wheeler from last year (the olden days, when tweets were 140 characters).
At my parents’ house, found my grandfather’s 1949 “Handbook of Chemistry and Physics” (31st edition) languishing out in the garage. Published long before Chemical Rubber Company became CRC Press.
Now, you might think that your job is dangerous and exciting, with much to recommend it. But is the very first entry of your job’s handbook titled “ANTIDOTES OF POISONS”?
I am sorry, but if your job’s handbook can’t tell me quickly and with great assurance how to treat someone who has swallowed “Corrosive Sublimate,” which, I don’t even know what that is, then please get out of my face forever with your garbage employment.
6yo is in the back seat working on a “script” about Amelia Earhart, and she just explained to me that “All Star” by Smashmouth is the song that will play during the scene where the scientists try to determine if they skeleton they found belongs to Amelia.
That is the funniest damn thing I have heard in my entire life.
RIP Steve Ditko, co-creator of Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, Squirrel Girl, and a million other characters.
Illustration: Steve Ditko
Almost every time you look at a comic book you see one of #SteveDitko’s innovations: He invented the little corner square, with the faces of the characters and info about the issue, for Amazing Spider-Man #2. cbr.com/spider-man-ste…
Thank goodness Pruitt is out at EPA, now we can turn the agency over to...
...a climate science-denying coal lobbyist with a reputation as a shadowy Washington insider wait what. nytimes.com/2018/04/12/cli…
Scott Pruitt is still facing something like 15 investigations, and at least some of these will continue despite his resignation. If he broke the law he doesn’t get to resign from that. motherjones.com/environment/20…
One last F U to the environment on his way out the door.
Vannevar Bush wrote to President Truman #OTD in 1945, responding to a request made by Roosevelt in 1944. He submitted "Science the Endless Frontier," a report outlining a plan for federal support for the sciences and the establishment of the @NSF. nsf.gov/about/history/…
That same month, July 1945, Vannevar Bush published "As We May Think" in @TheAtlantic, a forward-looking essay that anticipated hypertext, the web, and other information technologies in the form of a desk-like device he called a "memex." theatlantic.com/magazine/archi…
☝️July 1945 was quite a month for Vannevar Bush. He sent a report to the president that led to the NSF and made funding the sciences a federal priority. He also published a piece in The Atlantic that forecast hypertext, the Web, Wikipedia, and more.