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Showing posts from May, 2004

Students Censured For Wearing Pink

CBS 2 Chicago : "Six middle school boys who were banned from a class portrait for refusing to cover up their pink T-shirts have gained the support of fashion guru and 'American Idol' host Ryan Seacrest. Ensign Middle School principal Edward Wong pulled the boys from their eighth grade class portrait last Thursday because he feared the color could be associated with gang-affiliated 'dance crews,' which hold all-night dance contests and raves. The boys denied being crew members and said they wore the shirts, which students described as 'Easter pink,' to stand out in the photo. More than 400 of the 1,000 seventh- and eighth-graders at the upscale school wore pink to class the following day in support of the teens. Many said they would wear pink again Friday. 'It's dumb,' said Luis Solis, 13, one of the boys who was barred from the photo. 'How come we can't wear pink? We didn't do nothing.' Seacrest, who also hosts : "A sensors set, packaged in a very nice frog, you plug it into your PC to have an accurate barometer, thermometer, hygrometer and data logger. At the bottom right corner of your 'Windows' screen you can see Time Of Day (TOD) permanently displayed. At a low cost you can complete this information about your environment with atmospheric pressure, hygrometry and temperature. A double click on this new icon, a frog, and gives you access to high accuracy meters. You can look through records without time limits and display with coloured curves the weather trends. You can export data to Microsoft Office or any equivalent software to customize data management. In accordance with Net and Free Software ethic, the basic software is free of charge. Designed to be sold on the Net, accurate sensors are low cost without any additional margins : directly from designer to user."
Thomasville Times Enterprise - Internet Edition : "Nelson Winbush knows his voice isn't likely to be heard above the crowd that writes American history books. That doesn't keep him from speaking his mind, however. A 75-year-old black man whose grandfather proudly fought in the gray uniform of the South during the Civil War, Winbush addressed a group of about 40 at the Thomas County Museum of History Sunday afternoon. To say the least, his perspective of the war differs greatly from what is taught in America's classrooms today. 'People have manufactured a lot of mistruths about why the war took place,' he said. 'It wasn't about slavery. It was about state's rights and tariffs.' Many of Winbush's words were reserved for the Confederate battle flag, which still swirls amid controversy more than 150 years after it originally flew. 'This flag has been lied about more than any flag in the world,' Winbush said. 'People see

Add Porn Star To List Of Outsourced U.S. Jobs : "SAO PAULO, Brazil American X-rated film directors are heading to Brazil in search of uninhibited women, exotic locations and cheap production costs. The going rate for a Brazilian X-rated actress is about $175 per sex scene -- a fraction of what talent in the Los Angeles area costs. Unlike most of their American counterparts, condoms are the norm for the Brazilian sex stars. It's an example many in the U.S. adult entertainment industry say Americans should learn. Tim Connelly, publisher of California-based AVN, an adult film industry magazine, said Brazil is the place to go today. He said economics and beautiful women are driving the growth of the Brazilian porn industry."

'Invention' set for discovery 04/29/2004

Yahoo! News : "In their first project since exiting 'The West Wing,' Aaron Sorkin and Thomas Schlamme will join forces at New Line on 'The Farnsworth Invention,' a drama about how Philo Farnsworth invented TV technology and was robbed of the glory by broadcast pioneer David Sarnoff. Project was sold as a spec package. After entering into exclusive negotiations early this week, New Line agreed to pay $2.5 million against 2% of gross for Sorkin to write and produce, with Schlamme receiving just north of $1 million to direct the film and produce. Script is set in the late 1920s, when the 22-year-old genius from Utah became the first to capture a moving image in a box. That led to a skirmish with rival scientist Vladimir Zworykin, who years earlier had filed a patent for the technology even though he hadn't made it work until Farnsworth's invention. Since Zworykin was under the employ of radio giant RCA and Sarnoff, the young mogul who ran the broadcas

Recording Companies Agree to Pay $50M

Yahoo! News : "Major recording companies have agreed to return nearly $50 million in unclaimed royalties to Sean Combs, Gloria Estefan (news), Dolly Parton (news) and thousands of lesser known musicians under a settlement announced Tuesday. A two-year investigation by New York state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer's office found that many artists were not being paid royalties because record companies lost contact with the performers and had stopped making required payments. As a result of the agreement, Spitzer said, new procedures will be adopted to ensure that artists and their descendants receive the compensation they are entitled to get. 'Once the recording companies have received royalties, those royalties have to be disbursed to the artists who are owed those funds,' Spitzer said at a news conference. 'There are many artists who struggle. ... They depend on the stream of royalties,' he added. The attorney general said about $25 million in ro

Democrat wants to Kill Koala Bears - Call to shoot 20,000 Australian koalas - Apr 30, 2004 : "A koala population explosion on an Australian island has prompted calls for 20,000 of the furry, native marsupials to be shot to stop them destroying their island habitat and end a koala famine. Some 30,000 koalas on Kangaroo Island, off the coast of the state of South Australia, are stripping the island of its native gum trees, destroying the ecosystem and causing a koala famine, say environmentalists and national parks officials. 'We are talking thousands of starving koalas,' said Sandra Kanck from the Australian Democrats, Australia's third major political party. 'While they may be cute and cuddly we need to get beyond emotion to suggestion is professional shooters do it quickly and cleanly,' Kanck told Reuters on Friday of the proposed cull."

Who's Fucking Who? : "Last week, my uncle called an emergency family meeting to discuss my grandmother. Who doesn't bathe. Who doesn't follow her diet or properly administer her insulin injections. And who is slightly retarded. This isn't a fact we often admit in public. No one wants to go on record as saying their gene pool contains a smelly, mentally deficient matriarch who isn't concerned when a needle breaks off in her ample supply of flesh. Her apartment reeks, and with a building inspection on the horizon and because no one wants to take her in if she gets kicked out, we needed to devise a plan to get her to wash her pits (and other areas we'd rather not envision) and give away the mangy dog that pisses everywhere. Before the words 'Clean your apartment, you pig' could escape our lips, the first words out of her mouth were: 'Who's going to drive me to vote on the 20th?' Because, you see, my grandmother -- she of the dou

MC with goddamned standards across freaking platforms - m4w : Reply to: Date: Mon Apr 26 12:51:21 2004 Holy high hopping christ, someone needs to take Bill Gates' cock and Steve Jobs' ass and fit them together like pieces in a jigsaw puzzle until they both learn to like it. I'm THROUGH dealing with these cross-platform inconsistencies like px size and dpi differences and in-line CSS not matching on Safari vs. IE6. GET ALONG! NOW! I don't CARE if you want to quibble over iPods and Dell DJ's, no one uses .wma ANYWAY, and Quark is just a euphamism for 'almost as good as InDesign but more expensive and also buggier,' so if you must have your giggles, you can get your jollies grudging on these and leave us hard-working, blue-collar, EXTREMELY PISSED OFF web developers and designers a-fucking-lone. Just for God's sake - and mine (yes, one of the few times God and I are both on the same side. So you KNOW you're wrong) - SETTLE your differences on PIXEL MEAS

DNA Lounge

DNA Sequencing : "But enough about zombies, now let's talk about bloodsucking parasites. We just renewed our liability insurance, and it's gone up again by like $4,000: it's now $50,000 a year! When we opened in 2001, we were paying $21,000/year. We've never filed a claim, but it doubled almost immediately after those Great White pigfuckers went and blew themselves up. The wonderful new kink this time around is that now the insurance companies are offering 'terrorism insurance' for an additional charge. You can connect the dots on what that means, right? It means that if you file a claim, and the insurance company decides that, if they squint just right, it looks like 'terrorism', then they don't have to pay. And as we all know, here in These Uncertain Times, absolutely everything is considered terrorism. What do you want to bet that they'd consider someone getting maced to be terrorism? After all, it's a chemical weapon."

The Locksmith w/ FREE LOCK PICKS!

The Locksmith w/ FREE LOCK PICKS! : $34.95 $25.95 On Sale! Pick locks like a professional. Don't pay for a locksmith, do it yourself. Easy to follow step by step video clips that will show you how to pick almost any type of locks. Over 35 minutes of interactive video clips. Includes pocket size lock picks that easily fit into your wallet, or make you own lock picking tool."

The Embedding of America’s Poets

interventionmag : "The government, with a defense contractor, elicits work from poets to give voice to the war in Iraq, but which voices will be heard and which ones not heard? By Kevin Bowen In the midst of the Vietnam War, a small group of recently discharged American veterans sent out a call for poems and stories written by active duty personnel and veterans like themselves. The result was an avalanche of submissions, some supportive, many deeply critical of the war effort. Winning Hearts and Minds, an anthology of some of the submissions edited by Larry Rottmann, Jan Barry, and Basil T. Paquet was published in 1972, winning high praise from the nation's literary journals and spurring the Nixon White House to start investigations into who these writers were. Winning Hearts and Minds was a grassroots effort, its gathering of poetry a powerful expression of the frustration, anger, and alienation soldiers and veterans felt at the conduct of the war in Vietnam. Now, as t

Stolen Stradivarius almost ended up as CD holder, police say : "A 320-year-old missing Stradivarius cello is back with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, having possibly avoided becoming the most expensive CD rack ever. A nurse found the $3.5 million instrument made by master craftsman Antonio Stradivari lying by a trash bin - and almost had her boyfriend convert it into a CD holder, police said Tuesday. The instrument is damaged but reparable, a restorer said. Melanie Stevens, 29, discovered the cello about a mile from where it was stolen, still inside its silver-coated plastic case. She put it in her car's trunk for two days. Then Stevens asked her boyfriend, a cabinetmaker, to either repair the instrument or convert it into a unique CD holder, Detective Donald Hrycyk said. She said she didn't know its significance until she noticed a news report May 7. ``I had the idea to possibly put a hinge on the front. ... He would install little shelves inside,'' Stevens said. ``It would be a very elaborate CD

Superhero Costume Boots : "Ever see a superhero wearing shabby boots? Not if he's serious about keeping the world a safe and villain-free place. Our superhero boots are top notch, one piece constructed, Lex Luthor stompers! They're boots for the modern man and woman! They're boots of steel! Or, close enough... "

eXile - Issue

eXile - Issue #190 - Feature Story - Abu Ghraibi Fever - By John Dolan :,,,Then came Lynndie England, the girl who sacrificed so much to try to show America that Empires should be fun. This was the first American war where the girls were allowed to play with the boys--literally, in Lynndie's case! Assigned to "break the will" of Iraqi prisoners, Lynndie and her chunky co-star did what good Imperialists always do: they turned business into pleasure. If only we Americans studied history more, we'd understand that Lynndie's improvised tableaux, like the "pyramid of naked Iraqis" or the equally classic "aiming gun/thumb at captured Iraqi's balls," come straight out of the Greco-Roman canon, or even further back--from the Assyrians, masters of this sort of fun. Every time the Ancients took a city, they hired sculptors to depict in loving detail the sexual humiliation of the defeated. The losers were inevitably depicted as naked, bound, oft

Low Dose Radiation, Hormesis, and Radiation Protection Policy Fraud

RSH was organized by independent individuals, knowledgeable about radiation health effects science, and associated public policies. They address the fact that data is misrepresented, and public funds wasted, to support radiation protection policy, and to prevent the application of hormesis effects of low dose radiation in medical applications, that are detrimental to public health. # These individuals are committed to change public policy in the public interest # (often at personal sacrifice). They report the extensive deliberate science, and advocate for appropriate research. They have negligible financial support vs. $100s millions from governments to "study" and "assess" radiation health effects (to "scientists" with substantial conflicts of interest). We have compiled some of the extensive, valid, scientific results from the peer-reviewed literature that document no effects at significant doses, and radiation hormesis effects: The data that are

Keeping Presidents in the Nuclear Dark

Episode #1: The Case of the Missing “Permissive Action Links” When the history of the nuclear cold war is finally comprehensively written, this McNamara vignette will be one of a long litany of items pointing to the ignorance of presidents and defense secretaries and other nuclear security officials about the true state of nuclear affairs during their time in the saddle. What I then told McNamara about his vitally important locks elicited this response: “I am shocked, absolutely shocked and outraged. Who the hell authorized that?” What he had just learned from me was that the locks had been installed, but everyone knew the combination. The Strategic Air Command (SAC) in Omaha quietly decided to set the “locks” to all zeros in order to circumvent this safeguard. During the early to mid-1970s, during my stint as a Minuteman launch officer, they still had not been changed. Our launch checklist in fact instructed us, the firing crew, to double-check the locking panel in our undergroun

Israel Defense Forces - The Official Website

Israel Defense Forces - The Official Website : "Israel Channel 10: Armed Palestinians Use UN Ambulances in War against IDF Tuesday 25/05/2004 17:38 Armed Palestinian boarding a UN ambulance. Picture by Channel 10 Israel channel 10 aired yesterday Inon Maga'l item showing armed Palestinians use UNRWA ambulances to flee undercover. Photographs taken at the Gaza Zeintun neighborhood about two weeks ago, on the same night the first APC was exploded, clearly show armed Palestinians boarding a UN-marked ambulance with a UN flag, and flee the scene. The reporter stressed that this was not a Palestinian Red Cross ambulance, known to have transported armored Palestinians since the outbreak of events, but rather a supposedly neutral ambulance of the UN."

Robinson's Difference Engine

This model operates on principles very similar to Babbage's original designs, though the constraints of using only standard Meccano parts inevitably mean some aspects of the operation are somewhat different. The model can handle decimal numbers with up to four digits, and up to three orders of differences - similar in scope to the fragment of the original Difference Engine #1 which Babbage actually realized in 1832. There is no reason in principle (other than the limited world supply of 2 1/2' gears and ratchet wheels!) why it could not be extended to arbitrary sized numbers and an arbitrary order of differences. Only two basic mechanisms are involved, those for the addition of individual decimal digits, and for the propagation of carries. The rest is repetition. The machine calculates reliably, producing a result about every 4 seconds - somewhat faster than they can be read off and written down. I have no doubt that if the Meccano of the 1920's had existed 100 years ear


The New Yorker: Fact Kersauson took the flashlight, and inspected for himself. “I had never seen anything like it,” he told me. “There were two giant tentacles right beneath us, lashing at the rudder.” The creature seemed to be wrapping itself around the boat, which rocked violently. The floorboards creaked, and the rudder started to bend. Then, just as the stern seemed ready to snap, everything went still. “As it unhooked itself from the boat, I could see its tentacles,” Ragot recalled. “The whole animal must have been nearly thirty feet long.” The creature had glistening skin and long arms with suckers, which left impressions on the hull. “It was enormous,” Kersauson recalled. “I’ve been sailing for forty years and I’ve always had an answer for everything—for hurricanes and icebergs. But I didn’t have an answer for this. It was terrifying.” What they claimed they saw—a claim that many regarded as a tall tale—was a giant squid, an animal that has long occupied a central pla

Class Action Settlement

McAfee Security : "Class Action Settlement for VirusScan version 3 and 4 users A settlement has been reached in a class action lawsuit over McAfee VirusScan versions 3 and 4. If you are a U.S. resident and you bought a retail version of McAfee VirusScan version 3 or version 4, then you are a member of the class. As a member of the class, you may receive a free download version of your choice of one of the three McAfee perpetual products: (1) VirusScan version 8, (2) AntiSpyware version 1.0, or (3) QuickClean version 4.01 (collectively 'Software'). In order to receive your free Software download, you must do the following: 1. Complete the certification form below. Then select Submit. 2. Once you have agreed to the class certification requirements, we will send you an email with a link to download your software. NOTE: ALL RIGHTS WILL EXPIRE ON JULY 16, 2004. YOU MUST COMPLETE THE CLASS CERTIFICATION FORM AND DOWNLOAD THE SOFTWARE ON OR BEFORE JULY 16, 2004

Boston students ponder slimmer pickings in vending machines : When high school student Shirley Gomez heard the news yesterday, she froze, widening her eyes and gaping in disbelief. If the Boston School Committee adopts the new nutrition policy proposed yesterday, Gomez' midmorning chocolate-chip cookies could be replaced by granola bars. Her gummy bears dumped for raisins. And her syrupy-sweet red fruit juice axed for vitamin-fortified soy milk. ''No way. They can't do that," said Gomez, as she and her friends made their way to the Burger King next door to Jeremiah E. Burke High School in Dorchester. ''If I wanted that kind of food, I could take it from my refrigerator at home. Why do I need to buy it at school?" Joining a nationwide effort to curb childhood obesity, diabetes, and other diet-related diseases, Boston school officials yesterday proposed substituting healthier foods for the high-fat and high-sugar beverages and snacks now sold on school grounds. School committee members, who

No degree for student who copied from the internet

ThisisLondon : A new row over exam cheating erupted today after a student was told he would get no marks for his essays because he copied them from the internet. The University of Kent at Canterbury has told 21-year-old Michael Gunn he will leave with nothing after a three-year English literature-course - except £11,000 in debts. But he has hit back, accusing the university of allowing him to complete three years of study and giving good marks for the essays it now says are worthless. He is planning to sue the university in the hope of recovering some of his student debt.

Copyrights for Building Codes

What the Supreme Court's Refusal to Decide Means Now and Prospects for the Future : When the Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal from the 5th Circuit’s en banc opinion in Veeck v. Southern Building Code Congress International, Inc., it left unresolved a number of issues of concern to construction professionals. Veeck held that privately developed building codes lose important forms of copyright protection when adopted by state and local governments. At one level, the Supreme Court’s refusal is surprising: The 5th Circuit’s opinion conflicted with a number of other circuits, presented an important nationwide question and drew an unusual six dissenting votes from en banc panelists. The Supreme Court had signaled its interest in the matter by asking the Solicitor General for the U.S. government’s views. (The en banc decision of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is at 293 F.3d 791. The U.S. Supreme Court's denial of SBCCI's petition for writ of certiorari is at

DNA Study Finds Chihuahuas Aren't Dogs

Watley Review - Page Three :As part of an ambitious effort to identify genes that cause disease in dogs and humans, scientists at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle analyzed DNA collected from 414 dogs representing 85 breeds, including some of the most popular. The findings have sent reverberations though the ranks of dog fanciers, who primp and preen their beloved companions for shows and take great pride in their pedigrees. "It was a surprise to find that some breeds such as the Ibizan hound and the Pharaoh hound, along with several others that dog aficionados have long believed dated back thousands of years, are actually much more modern animals – re-creations that were probably produced by breeders," said geneticist Leonid Kruglyak, who helped conduct the research. "However, it was more of a surprise to find that some breeds are not even dogs." Among other findings, the analysis determined that the Chihuahua is actually a type of large

Current Chaos Manor mail : "Whenever anyone presses NASA to shift money from current programs and take a bet on competition and going outside the system they say if we don't keep spending the money we'll be left without crucial capabilities. What no one realizes is that we no longer have any capabilities. hsspac253818348may25,0,4272419.story?coll=ny-health-headlines NASA ruled yesterday that U.S. spacesuits on the International Space Station are unusable and ordered the crew to use Russian gear instead, adding considerable time and distance to a critical spacewalk next month. The crew wanted to wear American suits and go out the much closer American hatch to get to a broken power supply unit on the exterior of the space station, but a cooling problem with the outfits made that impossible. R When, way back in the 1980's, I suggested in a BYTE column that NASA's space suits were not very good, a Hamilton Standa

Current View : The Weekly Standard arrived today, and there is an article by Frederick Kagan called "The Incredible Shrinking Army." It's the new neo-con line: the problem is that the Army isn't big enough to do the job. What job? That isn't discussed: apparently the question isn't relevant. We have to occupy Iraq, and probably invade some more places, and the Army isn't big enough. We need a larger Army. The good news is that we probably won't need to revive conscription in order to get the bigger Army. Volunteer recruiting should be sufficient. But this Administration is deficient: it promised to rescue the Army from the Clinton depletion, and it didn't do it, and it's all the Administration's fault, and Iraq is at the edge of catastrophe and that's all the Administration's fault. Well, yes: certainly if the mission of the US is to establish colonial regimes all over the world (of course they are temporary, just being tr

THE EVOLUTION OF COOKING : "According to Harvard biological anthropologist Richard Wrangham, almost two million years ago humans emerged from a stock of pre-human apes. Remarkably, our species is still evolving today, faster than ever. 'Why we evolved then, and why we are still changing, are problems that shape our souls,' he says. Wrangham believes that humanity was launched by an ape learning to cook. In a burst of evolution around two million years ago, our species developed the family relations that make us such a peculiar kind of animal. Cooking made us women, men and lovers. 'We behave like our two closest relatives,' Wrangham says. 'Chimpanzees and bonobos, because in spite of first appearances, we face somewhat similar kinds of problems to each of those species. Cooking makes our behavior partly chimpanzee-like because it intensifies a chimpanzee-like division of labor. Self-domestication, on the other hand, makes us bonobo-like by selecting for a youthful psyche.

Food Drop Fiasco

Loompanics Unlimited : " Shortly after the U.S. attacked Afghanistan for supposedly sheltering Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda, our TV screens were filled with images of planes dropping food rations into the bombarded country. The little yellow packets were shoved out of cargo holds by the thousands. You could almost hear the government patting itself on the back as it said, “See, we're actually helping the starving people of Afghanistan.” Trouble is, those food drops were a complete disaster. News reports mentioned some of the problems with the humanitarian effort, but there's a lot they either didn't tell us or got wrong. A nonprofit aid organization called Partners International Foundation decided to see what was going on. These guys aren't granola-crunching flower-children – they used to be in Special Forces units of the U.S. military. And they didn't content themselves to sit in an office interviewing people by phone. They went into Afghanistan during t

The Ultimate War Sim : "Like my Grandpa always said, there were no naked human pyramids in Starcraft. There were no whiny anti-war Hollywood types or questionable war motives or granola-munching human shields. I'm starting to think that even Command and Conquer: Generals, a game so 'realistic' it took a NASA-built Quantum supercomputer to run it, has left me woefully unprepared to fight an actual war. Well, below is my open letter to the Real Time Strategy gaming cartel. I want a War Simulation. A real one. I don't want little cartoon tanks jostling around in a video sandbox chewing down each other's health meters while a preteen opponent insults my sexuality using every key on his keyboard except the ones with letters. I want an RTS game that will give me a stress headache after an hour and an ulcer after a week. I want to identify experienced players on the street by their Thousand-Yard Stares. I want a War Sim... 1. ...where I spend two hou
Aftenposten Norway, Norwegian news in English : "An IT company in Nordjylland, Denmark has introduced a novel program to keep employees satisfied. After examining well-known trends in Internet and business traffic, LL Media decided it would be sensible and appreciated to offer all of its employees free subscriptions to Internet pornography. The company's director, Levi Nielsen, believes that access to porn is a natural fringe benefit, like a free phone or a company car. 'We know that 80 percent of all hits on the Internet are on porn sites. And we can see that people also surf porn pages during work,' Nielsen told Danish Broadcasting's DR Nordjylland. In return for this service the company blocks all access to porn pages during office hours. Nielsen hopes that the expense of about DKK 30 (USD 5) per head per week will make his staff more relaxed and more efficient on the job."

2 sides to the story

jaynote: this is what I was originally gonna post. There's been a good followup, which illustraets just how twisted a story like this can first be reported The Daytona Beach News-Journal: Editorials : "Bill Nevins, a New Mexico high school teacher and personal friend, was fired last year and classes in poetry and the poetry club at Rio Rancho High School were permanently terminated. It had nothing to do with obscenity, but it had everything to do with extremist politics. The 'Slam Team' was a group of teenage poets who asked Nevins to serve as faculty adviser to their club. The teens, mostly shy youngsters, were taught to read their poetry aloud and before audiences. Rio Rancho High School gave the Slam Team access to the school's closed-circuit television once a week and the poets thrived. In March 2003, a teenage girl named Courtney presented one of her poems before an audience at Barnes & Noble bookstore in Albuquerque, then read the poem live on th

Flexable Piano

YAMANO MUSIC Online: Musical instrument/musical score

author of the Gaia hypothesis calls for nukes

News : "Global warming is now advancing so swiftly that only a massive expansion of nuclear power as the world's main energy source can prevent it overwhelming civilisation, the scientist and celebrated Green guru, James Lovelock, says. His call will cause huge disquiet for the environmental movement. It has long considered the 84-year-old radical thinker among its greatest heroes, and sees climate change as the most important issue facing the world, but it has always regarded opposition to nuclear power as an article of faith. Last night the leaders of both Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth rejected his call. Professor Lovelock, who achieved international fame as the author of the Gaia hypothesis, the theory that the Earth keeps itself fit for life by the actions of living things themselves, was among the first researchers to sound the alarm about the threat from the greenhouse effect. He was in a select group of scientists who gave an initial briefing on climate c

Sunshine Project: Biodefense Research

Map of High Containment and Other Facilities of the US Biodefense Program

Where Did They Put Their Ticket Stubs?

Yahoo! News : LONDON (Reuters) - More than 80 British students threw caution and their clothes to the wind Friday to set a world record for the number of nudes riding on a rollercoaster. The naked joy riders spent a hair-raising one minute and fifty seconds swooping around the rails of the gravity defying rollercoaster ride at a theme park south of London. A spokeswoman at the park said 81 students from 15 universities took part in the record breaking stunt, which had never been attempted before."

Breast Baring Popular in 1600s

Discovery Channel : "Women of the 1600s, from queens to prostitutes, commonly exposed one or both breasts in public and in the popular media of the day, according to a study of fashion, portraits, prints, and thousands of woodcuts from 17th-century ballads. The finding suggests breast exposure by women in England and in the Netherlands during the 17th century was more accepted than it is in most countries today. Researchers, for example, say Janet Jackson's Super Bowl baring would not even have raised eyebrows in the 17th century. Angela McShane Jones, a lecturer in history at University of Warwick in Coventry, England, became interested in the subject while studying the nearly 2,000 woodcut ballads housed in the Samuel Pepys collection at Cambridge University. Additional ballad sheets located at the British Library, the National Library of Scotland, Harvard University, and other institutions fuelled her study. Ballad sheets served as the pop music and pulp fiction

AOL Censures Email

LangaList Std Edition 2004-04-19 : "AOL is at it again. This time, it's reading *inside* its members' emails, and preemptively blocking any messages that contain links to sites that AOL doesn't want you to see. Note: I'm *not* talking about simple mail blocks, where a mail is discarded if it originates from a 'forbidden' address. No: AOL is parsing the content of its members' emails and blocking them even if they merely *mention* a site that AOL disapproves of. This happened to my last newsletter issue, when I mentioned a perfectly valid and inoffensive link: . It turns out that last summer, in July, AOL put that site on its naughty list for some unexplained reason, and ever since has blocked all emails that even contain a link to that address. When my list-host ( ) noticed huge numbers of AOL emails bouncing back, they preemptively sought to find out why, and the folks at AOL then removed the block

What Mr. Maillet Really Meant to Tell Me

IROSF : "Because in science fiction, and more broadly speculative fiction, authorial intent is critical across far more axes of story telling than in most forms of literature. When John Updike tells us 'Rabbit is rich' (2), readers of naturalistic fiction don't have to wonder what species Rabbit is, whether rich applies to his suitability as a menu item or his fuel-air mixture. All the same assumptions and cultural experiences which propel us through our daily lives propel us through naturalistic fiction, literary fiction, historical fiction and most non-fiction. We read these for the differences they illustrate between our experience and what the author describes, or for the joy of learning. How many readers have attained a grasp of nineteenth century military history and combat tactics from George MacDonald Fraser's excellent Flashman (3) series, or Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey-Maturin books? (4) But in speculative fiction, everything is up for grabs. Cert

Virtual skin looking even better

BBC NEWS : "you get a close look at some of the creatures of the night in the Van Helsing movie, you might notice how realistic their skin looks. The reason is a program that works out how light affects surfaces like skin to make computer-generated characters look more believable. The software was first used on Gollum in the Lord of the Rings trilogy and is now a staple of blockbusters packed with visual effects. The man behind the technique, Dr Henrik Jensen of the University of California at San Diego, was recently rewarded for his contribution to Hollywood."


State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer today announced a deal with the nation’s top recording companies that returns nearly $50 million in unclaimed royalties to thousands of performers. The agreement comes after a two-year investigation by Spitzer’s office found that many artists and writers were not being paid royalties because record companies had failed to maintain contact with the performers and had stopped making required payments. This problem affected both star entertainers with numerous hit recordings and obscure musicians who may have had only one recording. ....Prominent artists who were owed royalty payments included: David Bowie, Dolly Parton, Harry Belafonte, Liza Minnelli, Dave Matthews, Sean Combs and Gloria Estefan. Spitzer noted that while royalty disputes are common in the entertainment industry, this particular problem did not involve disagreement over the terms of the recording contract or the amount of the royalty payment. Instead, it was a matter of the rec

Why one actor suddenly pops up in ad after ad after ad.

Ad Nauseam - By Seth Stevenson : "Why does this happen? Why does one actor capture the fancy of all the agencies, all at once? And do the marketers care that the face of their product is the face of five or six other products, too? To answer these and other questions, I tracked down one of these commercial acting champs. Ad Report Card readers, I give you Joel Moore, who in the past several months has appeared in ads for Best Buy (he's at a Rolling Stones concert), Kohl's (he's a mean-spirited ice-cream man), Castrol (a daydreaming lab tech), eBay (a crooning auction enthusiast), and Cingular ('I call it my 'They're my minutes and I'm keeping them' plan!'). In all, Moore says he's done 10 national spots in about the last year or so. Why does an actor get hot like this? Partly, says Moore, it's that 'they love fresh faces.' Moore's got a unique look: 'I'm not completely a character actor, and not a leading man

The Story Behind the Lynndie England Interview

Poynter Online : "Last week, KCNC-TV Denver investigative reporter Brian Maass landed an interview that the world wanted to hear. (See interviews and coverage details from KCNC.) He interviewed Lynndie England, the woman that tabloids have dubbed 'Leash Gal.' England is the American soldier who has become an iconic symbol of American abuse of Iraqis being held at the Abu Ghraib prison. In one, she is seen smiling with a cigarette in her mouth as she leans forward and points at the genitals of a naked, hooded Iraqi. Another photo shows her holding a leash that encircles the neck of a naked detainee lying on his side. Within a day of Maass' interview, U.S. senators who were shown more photos of prisoner abuse and alleged guard misconduct said that England is featured in even more photographs that have not been released. Maass is, today, still the only journalist to have interviewed England. I interviewed Maass for Poynter Online to learn more about how his in

Study Seeks to Uncover Unofficial Rules in Science

The Scientist : "Life in the laboratory can seem increasingly rule-bound, especially in these high-security times. In studying what makes life scientists tick, some researchers suspect that the most important decisions fall into the gray areas between the rules, leaving scientists groping for guidance. 'If you were to go into a laboratory and just watch for a month ... you would probably find a whole culture governed by rules that are largely not written down at all,' says Nick Steneck, a University of Michigan professor of history who was drafted as an expert on science ethics by the Office of Research Integrity (ORI). Finding the sources of unwritten rules is the purpose of a study funded recently by the ORI, the arm of the Department of Health and Human Services charged with overseeing scientific misconduct."

Schizophrenia Experiences and Suggestions?

Schizophrenia Experiences and Suggestions? : "My mother has schizophrenia; Advice (Score:5, Informative) by TheMCP (121589) Alter Relationship on 02:24 PM -- Friday May 21 2004 (#9218460) ( My mother was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia when I was 3. She took her meds until I was 5, when she decided she felt so good and symptom free that she didn't need the meds any more, and stopped taking them. Permanently. She was an intensive care nurse, she should have known better. This began her slide into increasing insanity as the years went by. My father stuck around, knowing that if he left her she'd take me and ruin my life forever, and waited. When I was 12 I figured out she was completely out of control, and told my father 'Mom's crazy, I'm leaving so she won't hurt me, are you coming?' and he left with me and divorced her. Getting a legal separation from her ruined my father, and myself, financially. She took him f

The Original Hands Free Panda Bear for Cell Phones

Evertek Wholesale Computer Parts- WEN-101-PANDA : "Are you a maverick who thinks that you have everything cool under the sun already? You don't... Not until you get an Original Hands Free Panda Bear of your very own!!! It may sound like something out of a Sci-Fi movie - but this is the bear that talks to you!!! Simply plug the bear into your cell phone's hands free audio jack, pop in three double-A batteries and TADA!!! - Instant hands free Panda Bear phone!!! When the bear 'talks' to you, it's head and mouth move in sync with the caller on the other end. And when you get a call, not only do you hear the ring, but it's cute panda bear LED heart lights up as well. The little bear even has a little pocket that you keep your cell phone in"

Safety assessments released on four NASA projects (5/12/04) : "Along with four technical reports, the NESC produced a four-page newsletter summarizing the technical activities and some lessons learned. The biggest lesson, Roe said, is to curb the practice of 'PowerPoint engineering.' The Columbia report chided NASA engineers for their reliance on bulleted presentations. In the four studies, the inspectors came to agree that PowerPoint slides are not a good tool for providing substantive documentation of results. 'We think it's important to go back to the basics,' Roe said. 'We're making it a point with the agency that engineering organizations need to go back to writing engineering reports.'"

Listen to 'The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda'

Fresh Air: Tuesday - May 18, 2004 : "Gen. Romeo Dallaire was commander of the U.N. peacekeeping forces in Rwanda 10 years ago during one of the worst massacres in modern history. Some 800,000 Rwandans were killed in 100 days. Most of them were Tutsi and moderate Hutu civilians. During that time Dallaire and his troops were denied authority to intervene. The experience changed him, tormented him, and filled him with guilt. He suffered from post traumatic stress syndrome, was suicidal and depressed. He's written a new account, Shake Hands with the Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda."

For Sniffing Out Land Mines, a Platoon of Twitching Noses

The New York Times : The Gambian giant pouched rat ...... may be as good a mine detector as man or nature has yet devised. Just after sunup on one dewy morning, on a football field-sized patch of earth in the Mozambican countryside, Frank Weetjens and his squad of 16 giant pouched rats are proving it. Outfitted in tiny harnesses and hitched to 10-yard clotheslines, their footlong tails whipping to and fro, the rats lope up and down the lines, whiskers twitching, noses tasting the air. Wanjiro, a sleek 2-year-old female in a bright red harness, pauses halfway down the line, sniffs, turns back, then sniffs again. She gives the red clay a decisive scratch with both forepaws. Her trainer, Kassim Mgaza, snaps a metal clicker twice, and Wanjiro waddles to him for her reward — a mouthful of banana and an affectionate pet. "What Pavlov did with his dogs is exactly what we're doing here — very basic conditioning," said Mr. Weetjens, a lanky, 42-year-old Belgian who works

A Medical Mystery: Delusional parasitosis : For more than three years Reno resident Theresa Blodgett, 37, has had a mystery disease that seems like a plot device from the television show “The X-Files.” Blodgett’s symptoms include feeling invisible “parasites” biting her skin. She complains of overwhelming fatigue and body aches. She suffers from hair loss, skin lesions, rashes, and blue or red “fibers” that sprout from her lesions. She sees tiny black specks — like coffee grounds — on her arms. More than a dozen doctors have told her the cause of her strange ailment is in her mind. But a controversial new theory says many people who are branded with delusions of parasitosis are suffering from a physical illness, not a mental disease. Enlarged images of the “parasites” are posted on several Web sites and a Texas doctor said he has found biological causes and physical evidence for many of the symptoms described by Blodgett and others. Dr. William Harvey of Houston said many of his chronic fatigue patients, in

Eccentric Genius: Ballista

The Greco-Roman Cruise Missile. : " Originally about 15 feet high, able to chuck javelin sized spears or big chunks of rock hundreds of yards with formidable accuracy, the original was one bad-assed monster crossbow. This one's a lot smaller, but when fully torqued up capable of performance worthy of any serious weapons collection, and features a parallel universe inspired brass-bound laser sighting system. Currently the most in-demand of the Eccentric Genius siege engine line, the ballista is powered by a pair of twisted cord skeins: The strength of the pull is fully adjustable from gentle lob to wood penetrating might: Likely not an appropriate gift for children or postal employees, but for anyone else a unique and beautiful heirloom quality gift."

Agents Seeks Leads in Greek Bombing

Yahoo! News : "To most Greeks, the three bomb blasts outside a suburban police station early Wednesday were not an act of unsettling terrorism. Instead, such attacks are widely viewed in Greece as the work of fringe radical groups that do not threaten the general public. 'We are used to having these small incidents that cause some damage but don't really create any problems,' said Maria Bossi, a former member of Greece's anti-terrorism commission. 'Greeks aren't used to seeing this type of terrorism as a security problem.' Dozens of firebomb attacks and bombings occur in Athens each year, but most target banks or government offices after work hours and rarely cause injuries. A variety of groups have claimed responsibility. Greek authorities have been reluctant to invest serious resources to chase down suspects, fearful of touching off a violent backlash. Tougher street policies have been repeatedly urged by a seven-nation Olympic security advi

Sweden Probes Lake Monster Being on List

Yahoo! News STOCKHOLM, Sweden - A government watchdog has asked a regional council why it placed a mythical monster on Sweden's endangered species list. The Parliamentary Ombudsman's office in Stockholm also asked the environment court in the Jaemtland province of central Sweden to explain why a businessman, who said he wanted to raise monster babies, was denied permission to search for its purported eggs. "During a routine inspection of the environment court in Jaemtland recently, we came across a decision that attracted our interest," Parliamentary Ombudsman Nils-Olof Berggren told the AP on Monday. "It was the local environment court, as a superior instance to the regional council, that had turned down an application from a man who wanted to search for and hatch the monster's eggs, probably believing it was just a joke." However, Berggren also found that there was an actual decision from 1986, placing the monster under protection. "So

Indian EVM compared with Diebold

Techaos Last few months have brought very serious discussions on the Net regarding the use of Electronic Voting, and the security of it. In the USA, the saga related to Diebold and its opposition is well known. I do not know the electoral process in the United States, but I attempt here to compare the Technology used by the Indian Election commission and the Diebold AccuVote system. I present here the Information I have about the Indian system, and the information about Diebold got from the web. ... IMHO, the Diebold system is too complex for a simple and straight forward task such as voting. Windows CE, Modems, PCMCIA storage cards, Touch screen GUI, On-screen writing facility, Voice-guidance system, multiple language UI, DES Encryption, centralized voting Server, a step-by-step wizard to cast a vote, Microsoft SQL Server to store votes, Backup servers etc. are all unnecessary. All geeks know that a smaller and simple system is more secure, more code means more cost, more chances

Mall slams door on Girl Scout scavenger hunt

TCPalm : After years of cookie sales, dainty teas and camping trips, Martin County Girl Scout leaders thought the troops might enjoy a day at the mall with their fathers. The fathers and daughters could spend quality time together, completing a scavenger hunt for items in the store windows. Then, after lunch at the food court, they could shop for a Mother's Day present. But Treasure Coast Square mall management didn't agree that it was such a wholesome event. It seems Girl Scouts wandering around with their fathers, holding pencils and paper, violates the post-Sept. 11 security policy at the mall, a mall representative said...... .......But when the troop leaders sent a letter asking permission from Rachelle Crain, the area director of mall marketing, they were told the event could jeopardize the security of the retailers and shoppers. "Since Sept. 11, we have looked at our security procedures very closely," she said. "Our enhanced security proh

NASA's Finances in Disarray; Auditor Leaves

Yahoo! News : PriceWaterhouseCoopers and NASA parted ways earlier this year, according to the space agency's inspector general, Robert Cobb. PriceWaterhouseCoopers declined to comment, but a source familiar with the situation said the audit firm opted out of the contract because it was unhappy with the relationship. In a scathing report on NASA's Sept. 30, 2003, financial statement -- which got scant attention at its release but was detailed in a cover story in the May issue of CFO Magazine -- the audit firm accused the space agency of one of the cardinal sins of the accounting world: failing to record its own costs properly. The same report said the transition to the new accounting program triggered a series of blunders that made completing the NASA audit impossible. There were hundreds of millions of dollars of "unreconciled" funds and a $2 billion difference between what NASA said it had and what was actually in its accounts, which are held by the Treas

Rescued Kitty Cat Turns Out To Be Bobcat : "A woman rescued what was described as a 'funky-looking house cat' after the animal was hit by a car near Santa Cruz, California. But after the woman put the dazed cat in her car and brought it to an animal hospital, an animal rescue worker told her it was a good thing the injured kitty was too stunned to move. It turns out the ten-pound cat was no ordinary housecat. It was a bobcat -- with sharp claws and long fangs. The rescuer admitted she thought the cat 'looked kinda strange.'"


Kit Contents: * 1 Foreign Body Protrusion * 1 Eyeball * 1 Eviscerated Intestines * 1 Each - small, medium and large lacerations * 1 Each - Compound fractured tibia, humerus and femur * 1 Each - Small and large sepsis wounds * 1 Avulsion * 2 Crushed feet * 2 Second degree burns * 1 Each - 1st and 3rd degree burns * 1 Small flesh wound * 1 Each - small and large fracture * 1 Jaw wound * 1 Perforated wound * 15 Assorted moulage stick-on wounds * 7 assorted bleeding strap-on wounds - complete with blood reservoir bags and pumps * 1 Lower leg impalement * 1 Broken clavicle * 1 Each - compound fracture of humerus and tibia * 1 Laceration of forearm * 1 Projectile entry * 1 Plexiglass pk for simulated 'glass in wound' * 1 Simulated dirt package * 1 Each - Glycerine (for perspiration), cold cream, mineral oil * 1 Petroleum jelly * 1 Modeling paste-light a

Public Agenda Research Reports: Teaching Interrupted

Public Agenda Research Reports: Teaching Interrupted : "Teachers and parents say too many students are losing critical opportunities for learning -- and too many teachers are leaving the profession -- because of the behavior of a few persistant classroom troublemakers. Teachers in particular complain about the growing willingness of some students and parents to challenge teacher judgment and threaten legal action. But both teachers and parents support a variety of remedies, including stricter enforcement of existing rules of conduct, alternative schools for chronically disruptive students and limiting parents’ ability to sue schools over disciplinary decisions. Prepared with support from Common Good. Available for free download only in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format."

Paper Model

Scaled Composites SpaceShipOne : "Carried beneath White Knight to 50,000 ft., SpaceShipOne will be released to fly under its own power to the 100 km. target height. For re-entry, the spacecraft's entire tailplane tilts upward in a high-drag 'feather' configuration. As it approaches the ground, the tail returns to its normal flying position, and the vehicle glides to a runway landing. The first glide flight of SpaceShipOne occurred on August 7, 2003, and the first rocket-powered flight test took place on December 17, achieving a speed of Mach 1.2. The X-prize has not yet been claimed, but it is likely that the first attempts by the contestants will be made in 2004, and in the judgement of many observers Burt Rutan's innovative SpaceShipOne is a leading contender. This model builds into a detailed 1:48 scale replica of SpaceShipOne. The completed model is approximately 7 inches long. You will need a colour printer capable of handling card or cover stock to prin

Mitsubishi abandons employee

Inquisition 21st century : Our 'Mitsubishi abandons employee story' below has set off a huge debate about defence against charges of child pornography. We have lost track off the number of online and offline journals and newspapers that have either used it directly or done their own versions. At one stage our server shut us down when our traffic exceeded bandwidth, which we promptly doubled. It was carried by Wired, the Register, Security Focus,, the Washington Times, the Washington Post (their own version), CNN, Reuters and many others and discussed on numerous lists numerous. The clear opinion is that whether or not Jack was squeaky clean, his browser could have been, and probably was, hijacked, his employer and others badly contaminated the evidence against him, his lawyer gave him bad service, and he has still not received any justice despite his life being destroyed. Rob Pegoraro, of The Washington Post in his 'Browser Hijacking' follow up