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Benjamin Oakes

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Hi, I'm Ben Oakes and this is my geek blog. Currently, I'm a Ruby/JavaScript Developer at Liaison. Previously, I was a Developer at Continuity and Hedgeye, a Research Assistant in the Early Social Cognition Lab at Yale University and a student at the University of Iowa. I also organize TechCorridor.io, ICRuby, OpenHack Iowa City, and previously organized NewHaven.rb. I have an amazing wife named Danielle Oakes.

Filtering for the month June, 2015. Clear

The Presidential Candidate With a Plan to Run the US on 100% Clean Energy

by Ben

Meet the only presidential candidate with a viable plan to stabilize the planet’s climate.

Source: The Presidential Candidate With a Plan to Run the US on 100% Clean Energy

This is really important stuff. I hope this helps bring climate change into the spotlight for the presidential election.

 

Stanford researcher declares that the sixth mass extinction is here

by Ben

Paul Ehrlich and others use conservative estimates to prove that species are disappearing faster than at any time since the dinosaurs’ demise.

Source: Stanford researcher declares that the sixth mass extinction is here

Even if this is an exaggeration, this is more evidence that we need to change many of our species’ bad habits. Ehrlich is right when he says “we are sawing off the limb that we are sitting on.”

 

 

From ASM.JS to WebAssembly

by Ben

Source: Brendan Eich » Blog Archive » From ASM.JS to WebAssembly

WebAssembly, “wasm” for short, .wasm filename suffix, a new binary syntax for low-level safe code, initially co-expressive with asm.js, but in the long run able to diverge from JS’s semantics, in order to best serve as common object-level format for multiple source-level programming languages.

I have high hopes for this.

Ackbar’s Eleven: Star Wars/Ocean’s Eleven mashup

by Ben

Source: Ackbar’s Eleven: Star Wars/Ocean’s Eleven mashup

Cross a judiciously edited briefing scene from Star Wars with the audio from the briefing scene in Ocean’s Eleven, and what do you get?

This is actually pretty clever.

 

 

Apple drops license requirement for testing on your own device

by Ben

Source: Apple drops license requirement for testing on your own device

About time. This is a good move.

 

 

The making of “Who Shot Mr. Burns?”

by Ben

One day in the early 1990s, as Simpsons writers Bill Oakley and Josh Weinstein were working on a script in their office, Matt Groening appeared at the door and blurted out an idea. “We should do an episode like ‘Who shot J.R.?’” Weinstein remembers the creator of the show saying, “but with Mr. Burns”

Source: The making of “Who Shot Mr. Burns?” (via Zach Morek)

Lots of interesting history here.  They took it so seriously, but it still ended up being funny!

Microsoft Will Help Iowa Caucuses Go High-Tech

by Ben

Microsoft Will Help Iowa Caucuses Go High-Tech – Slashdot.

Poltical party caucuses are one of the quirkier aspects of American political life: local party members gather in small rooms across the state, discuss their preferences, and send a report of how many delegates for each candidate will attend later county and statewide caucuses to ultimately choose delegates to the national convention. It’s also a system with a lot of room for error in reporting, as local precinct leaders have traditionally sent in reports of votes via telephone touch-tone menus and paper mail. In 2016, Microsoft will help both Democrats and Republicans streamline the process.