Why the US military usually punishes misconduct but police often close ranks

2019-12-06 Dwight Stirling

When police are revealed to have killed an unarmed suspect or used excessive force during arrest, police generally defend those actions. Cops who report wrongdoing are routinely ostracized as “rats” and denied promotions, according to a 1998 Human Rights Watch study. Researchers identify this so-called “blue wall of silence” – the refusal to “snitch” on other officers – as a defining feature of U.S. cop culture today.

U.S. military culture stresses organizational, rather than personal, loyalty.

And the pride Marines famously feel, for instance, comes from being part of this well-respected corps. Personal relationships with other Marines are of secondary importance.

https://theconversation.com/why-the-us-military-usually-punishes-misconduct-but-police-often-close-ranks-127898

Spiking Neural Networks

2020-02-17 Martijn van Wezel

The SNNs bio-inspired neural networks are different from conventional neural networks due that the conventional neural networks communicate with numbers. Instead, SNNs communicate through spikes. … Having multiple spikes in a short period can stimulate the neuron to fire. However, if the time periods are to big between spikes, the neuron lose interest, and goes to sleep again.

… one major benefit of a Spiking Neural Networks is the power consumption. A ‘normal’ neural network uses big GPUs or CPUs that draw hundreds of Watts of power. SNN only uses for the same network size just a few nano Watts.

https://martijnvwezel.com/blogs/spiking_neural_networks/

The science of soap – here’s how it kills the coronavirus

2020-03-20

Alcohol-based disinfectants are also effective, but soap is a highly efficient way of killing the virus when it’s on your skin

… Health authorities have been giving us two messages: once you have the virus there are no drugs that can kill it or help you get rid of it. But also, wash your hands to stop the virus spreading. This seems odd. You can’t, even for a million dollars, get a drug for the coronavirus – but your grandmother’s bar of soap kills the virus.

So why does soap work so well on the Sars-CoV-2, the coronavirus and indeed most viruses? The short story: because the virus is a self-assembled nanoparticle in which the weakest link is the lipid (fatty) bilayer. Soap dissolves the fat membrane and the virus falls apart like a house of cards and dies – or rather, we should say it becomes inactive as viruses aren’t really alive.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/mar/12/science-soap-kills-coronavirus-alcohol-based-disinfectants