Please Stop Retweeting Without Verifying

by @edent | # | 1 comment | Read ~771 times.

If you've been on Twitter for any length of time, you'll have seen dozens of plaintive requests like this. The same happens with missing people, lost dogs, and urgent political causes. Yes, it can be a little annoying to see the same thing again and again - but it's all for a good cause, right?…

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The Solar Solstice

by @edent | # | 2 comments | Read ~201 times.

As regular readers know, we've installed solar panels on our house in Oxford. The panels were originally installed on 17th December 2013 - that's pretty close to the winter solstice, where the UK experiences the lowest hours of sunlight. Today is the summer solstice. Time for Druids to dance around Stonehenge as we celebrate the…

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Humin - A Zombie Idea

by @edent | # # # # | 4 comments | Read ~748 times.

If you ever listen to the wonderful More or Less podcast, you'll have heard the term "Zombie Statistic." It relates to stats which are factually incorrect - yet keep being circulated. Despite being disproved, they rear their ugly heads again and again. You probably know a few - men think about sex every 7 seconds,…

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Which Painting Do You Look Like? Comparing Faces Using Python and OpenCV

by @edent | # # # # # | 22 comments | Read ~22,471 times.

Many years ago, as I was wandering around the Louvre, I came across a painting which bore an uncanny resemblance to me! Spooky, eh? Yeah, yeah, it's not the greatest likeness ever, but people who know me seem to think I look like the chap on the left. This got me thinking... Wouldn't it be…

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Pareidolia and Computer Vision

by @edent | # # # # | Read ~336 times.

Humans are pretty spectacular at image recognition. We have a seemingly innate ability to look at an image and tell if it is that of a human face - even if it has been severely distorted. Occasionally though, the software in our brains is a little too eager to see a face. This phenomenon is…

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Laziness and Capitalism

by @edent | # # # | 2 comments | Read ~430 times.

We moved house recently. It's always fun to see what choices the previous owners made - orange paint in the bedroom? Yeuch! While some choices are purely subjective - those light fittings? - other choices are simply illogical. Let's take water meters. Anyone in the UK can get a water meter fitted for free. The…

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Dark Patterns - Opt-Out / Opt-In

by @edent | # # # # | Read ~918 times.

Hanlon's Razor states, "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." It would be nice to think that all mistakes and errors we encounter are just the result of bone-headedness. Sadly, that's not the case. Quite often malicious people deliberately try to trick you into taking actions you would normally have ignored.…

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