Friday, August 31, 2007

Chess, trailers, and grapes

The latest Technology Review has an column by cognitive scientist/philosopher Daniel Dennett about the tenth anniversary of Kasparov losing a match to Deep Blue (free registration is required). I happened to be at the ACM conference the year before where Kasparov lost a game to Deep Blue, but won the prize money. I remember his chess-equivalent-of-a-rock-star entrance (and entourage) at the awards banquet to receive his $400,000 winner's check :)

Also in Tech Review is a profile of a controversial researcher who believes resveratrol is a key to long life, so keep eating those grapes (or drinking red wine). Here's a quote from the article:

Sinclair's basic claim is simple, if seemingly improb­able: he has found an elixir of youth. In his Australian drawl, the 38-year-old Harvard University professor of pathology explains how he discovered that resveratrol, a chemical found in red wine, extends life span in mice by up to 24 percent and in other animals, including flies and worms, by as much as 59 percent. Sinclair hopes that resveratrol will bump up the life span of people, too. "The system at work in the mice and other organisms is evolutionarily very old, so I suspect that what works in mice will work in humans," he says.

Some NASA news: Dawn sent me this link about how the Apollo 12 quarantine trailer ended up on a fish farm in Alabama.

Finally, in local news: The first meeting of the Central Valley Cafe Scientifiqué is in October about sea otters. And, the securities and exchange commission (SEC) charged a local company with an illegal stock scheme involving about $1.5 million. If you lost money, you might remember some of the players from IQ Biometrix days.