Dust flux, Vostok ice core

Dust flux, Vostok ice core
Two dimensional phase space reconstruction of dust flux from the Vostok core over the period 186-4 ka using the time derivative method. Dust flux on the x-axis, rate of change is on the y-axis. From Gipp (2001).

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Supercomputation in the social sciences

At long last, the partnership between the NSA intensive computation group and the Institute for Complexity theory has come to fruition, and the result is a new computer capable of studying complex strategic and geopolitical issues. This new machine has two separate formal logic methods allowing it to accept as input all forms of available information. Thus, in addition to ordinary numerical inputs (number of kills, manufacturing indices, shipping information) this computer is able to break down speeches of important political figures, analyze and project trends in social media, and even use keyword counts from global emails as a means of determining the mood on the street.

Imagine the excitement then, as President Obama asked this new computer it's first question. "How far are we from a statisfactory resolution of our problems in Afghanistan."

For several minutes, the computer whirred softly. Out came the answer: "237,000 miles."

The President and his advisors all considered this answer carefully. But nobody understood what it meant. Perhaps the computer misunderstood the question. So they tried again.

"How  far are we from achieving victory in the war on terror?"

Once again the computer went to work, and the answer: "One million miles."

One of the programmers interjected. "Perhaps we should have the computer show us the information used in its calculation." And so it was done.
Today we are one step closer to the establishment of the US-Afghan strategic partnership. Most importantly, today we are one step closer to our shared goal and vision of a secure and sovereign Afghanistan
                           - General John Allen, April 8, 2012 
The improvement we have witnessed recently in Iraq represents marked progress in the Global War Terror and brings us one step closer to eradicating terrorism establishing another democratic ally in the region
                          - Senator John Boozman

The following timeline highlights ten drone attacks which resulted in deaths of al Qaeda operatives or other militants. These deaths take us one step closer to victory in the war against terror. [series of drone strikes follows]
                       - an Express Tribune blog posting 
While our fight against terror is far from over, I am hopeful that bin Laden's death will bring us one step closer to peace
                        - Congressman Mike Thompson 

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