Weekend linkdump

  • A goldmine of 1950s car reviews. The “hairy-chested, flame-spitting wildcat” Triumph TR-2 does 0-60 in a screaming 11.7 seconds (or about one-and-a-half seconds slower than the 2011 Nissan Cube);
  • In related news, you want the new 2012 Mercedes CLS63 AMG. The best bit: it only drinks about 13L/100km combined cycle (or about 18mpg in the old money), so you can plausibly claim you’re saving the planet by buying a massive 5.5-litre twin-turbo Merc;
  • Fishy dealing at Honda’s trading arm has battered its parent company to the tuna 15 billion yen. Honda executives are said to be floundering;
  • The Gray Lady’s executive editor Bill Keller talks at length about dealing with Julian Assange:

    As for our relationship with WikiLeaks, Julian Assange has been heard to boast that he served as a kind of puppet master, recruiting several news organizations, forcing them to work in concert and choreographing their work. This is characteristic braggadocio — or, as my Guardian colleagues would say, bollocks.

  • “They rang in the new year by setting the piano on fire again, in the middle of Biscayne Bay.”

And JRE keeps you entertained all weekend with a genetic algorithm that designs a car. Per Metafilter:

What happens when you give a computer, instead of a predefined function to run, a set of parameters, a goal, and the ability to mutate those parameters? You get a genetic algorithm. At its core, genetic algorithms can best be described as Darwinian evolution of computer functions. Is it better to use a streamlined, wide-wheel-base motorcycle to cross terrain, or something that looks like a cross between a fish and a tank? This simplistic simulation shows just what’s going to cause the rise of Skynet.

But as well as being a precursor to an artificial intelligence that will revolt and overthrow its creators, it turns out to be an excellent cat toy.

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