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The deepest image of the universe April 30, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Cool photos, Enviroment, Science & Technology.
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While Hubble has given us many amazing images, one of the most profound is this one from 2004, which took nearly 3 months of staring at the same spot to yield a glimpse back in time to when the universe was only 5% formed. You can enlarge the detail, by additionally clicking on the picture to see a myriad of galaxies.

Iran replaces Syria in Southern Lebanon April 30, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Geopolitics, In The News.
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Telegraph | News | Iran's spies watching us, says Israel
"When the Syrians were in Lebanon it was easy for us to control Hizbollah," said an officer with Israel's northern command. "If things got too tense we could put pressure on Damascus and the Syrians would act quickly to calm things down."

Although the Lebanese government technically controls the border area, its military is not considered strong enough to control Hizbollah, which takes its orders directly from Teheran.

Are You a Global Warming Skeptic? Part III April 30, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Enviroment, In The News, Science & Technology.
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Are You a Global Warming Skeptic? Part III: BLOG: SciAm Observations
As promised, here is the updated list of misgivings about whether global warming is occurring and whether it is caused by human activity. I've incorporated comments from the first and second threads and from private emails, and I've reshuffled some of the categories. I've done my best to be fair in representing the variety of opinion.

Castro could drill off Florida coast April 29, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Economy & Business, Geopolitics, In The News.
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Castro could drill off Florida coast
Who can blame him? Castro has for years looked for new opportunities to develop his economy in the face of our trade embargo. He could only expect to rely on Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez's oil and gas giveaway for so long. So, with the intention of claiming billions of dollars in new revenues and reducing his country's dependence on foreign energy, Castro has taken to the high seas in an effort to acquire and produce as much oil and gas as he can. (more…)

Venezuela buys Russian oil to avoid defaulting on deals April 29, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Economy & Business, In The News.
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FT.com / World / Americas – Venezuela buys Russian oil to avoid defaulting on deals
Venezuela, the world's fifth-largest oil exporter, has struck a $2bn deal to buy about 100,000 barrels a day of crude oil from Russia until the end of the year.
Under President Hugo Chávez, PDVSA's oil output has declined by about 60 per cent, a trend analysts say has accelerated in the past year because of poor technical management.

Mr Chávez's push to extend his influence throughout Latin America and the Caribbean with promises of cheap oil for friends and allies may be overstretching PDVSA's finances, however. Venezuela currently supplies about 300,000 barrels per day of oil and products to Cuba, Nicaragua and others under favourable long-term financing arrangements. This week, Venezuela signed a deal to send oil to town mayors in Nicaragua aligned with the leftwing Sandinista party. (more…)

U.S. Internet Use Hits New Highs April 29, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in In The News, Lifestyle.
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Pew Internet & American Life Project Report: Internet Penetration and Impact
Surveys fielded in 2006 show that internet penetration among adults in the U.S. has hit an all-time high. While the percentage of Americans who say they use the internet has continued to fluctuate slightly, our latest survey, fielded February 15 – April 6, 2006 shows that fully 73% of respondents (about 147 million adults) are internet users, up from 66% (about 133 million adults) in our January 2005 survey. And the share of Americans who have broadband connections at home has now reached 42% (about 84 million), up from 29% (about 59 million) in January 2005. (more…)

Last Ninja: ‘Be Able to Kill Your Students’ April 29, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Lifestyle, Sports.
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Last Ninja: ‘Be Able to Kill Your Students’ on Yahoo! News
Hatsumi is the only living student of the last “fighting ninja,” Toshitsugu Takamatsu, the so-called 33rd Grand Master who was a bodyguard to officials in Japanese-occupied Manchuria before World War II and fought — and won — 12 fights to the death.

Today, Hatsumi’s enemies are stereotypes and flagging interest in the ancient art. He seeks to leave the task to a worthy successor as speculation mounts about his retirement.

Most Japanese are exposed to martial arts in school. But the number practicing judo has been declining since the 1980s as more people turn to Western sports like golf and tennis. Sumo also has fallen on hard times, forcing the Japan Sumo Association to import stars.

Mexico to decriminalizing pot and cocaine April 29, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in In The News, Lifestyle.
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Mexico proposes decriminalizing pot and cocaine | Reuters.com
Police will not penalize people for possessing up to 5 grams of marijuana, 5 grams of opium, 25 milligrams of heroin or 500 milligrams of cocaine, under a bill passed by senators late on Thursday and earlier approved by the lower house.

The government says the measure allows police to focus on major drug dealers, and President Fox is expected to sign it into law.

UPDATE  In a surprise reversal, Mexican President Vicente Fox will not sign a widely criticized reform to decriminalize. Fox's decision was unexpected, given that the legislation was initially designed by his office and introduced by his party.

Rush Limbaugh’s Booking Blotter April 29, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Cool Sites, In The News, News and politics.
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Here is the link to the Palm Beach Sherrif’s Office to see the booking. Thanks to Jeff Ullian.
. . Call it vanity, call it good PR, but Palm Beach-based conservative talkmeister Rush Limbaugh seemed very concerned about his mug shot when he was booked at the county jail on a doctor-shopping charge Friday evening. Apparently not wanting anything close to the famous arrest photos of actor Nick Nolte and soul man James Brown, the White House apologist actually asked the deputy whether he could see his photo before leaving the jail. “We put it on the computer screen and showed it to him,” said jail boss Capt. Mark Chamberlain. The porky-again radio host must have liked what he saw; he didn’t ask for a re-shoot. . .

France’s Plan: Pay ‘Em To Go Home April 29, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in In The News, News and politics.
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By Carol Matlack
As demonstrations intensify and legislation stalls in the U.S. over the status of illegal immigrants, France has been taking another tack. It's offering cash payments — the equivalent of about $2,400 per adult and $600 per child — to illegals who agree to return to their native countries. The government began to offer the payments last September but so far has found fewer than 200 takers. Now, law-and-order Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy is urging officials to cut the program's red tape to make participation easier, according to the French daily Le Figaro, which obtained a copy of an Interior Ministry memo sent to local officials. But critics say the payments are too low to entice many of France's estimated 400,000 illegals to say adieu.

Meanwhile, France is getting tougher on those who don't leave voluntarily. Since 2002, the number of illegals expelled annually from the country has doubled, to 20,000 last year. At the same time, Sarkozy is spearheading legislation to make it easier for well-educated, highly skilled immigrants to enter the country. Sarkozy, the front-runner in the 2007 French presidential race, is himself the son of an immigrant. His father fled communist Hungary in 1949 and was granted refugee status in France.

Stamps we would like to see April 28, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Cool photos, Lifestyle.
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Worth1000.com | Photoshop Contests | Are you Worthy™ | contest

A load of hot air? April 28, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Enviroment, Science & Technology.
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BBC NEWS | UK | Magazine | A load of hot air?

Well this post has certainly produced the most heat of any of the almost 250 posts here. Be sure to read the 2nd comment from desmogblog which takes up the challange to rebut the sceptics.

How much has the planet warmed up over the past century? Most people reckon between two and three degrees. They are not even close. The real figure, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is 0.6C. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established in 1988 by two United Nations organizations, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to assess the "risk of human-induced climate change".

It's not surprising most people get it wrong. We are bombarded by stories warning us that global warming is out of control."Dr Cindy Carey, a frog specialist from Colorado University, warns that climate scientists have to be more sceptical of their own research.

"A bad paper that gets a lot of publicity could backfire considerably and they'll say see scientists are trying to convince people of climate change on the back of bad data."

After listing some examples this article (click onthe BBC news link at top-of-page to read) concludes wit this warning, just as the alarmist Al Gore movie (Link to movie trailer) is about to open:

All of the climate scientists we spoke to fervently believe global warming is being caused by human activity. Many agree there's also a major problem with alarmism.

A group of 60 expert Scientists just petitioned the Canadian governemet to caution them against a rush-to-judgement on the cause of Global Warming.

It may be many years yet before we properly understand the Earth's climate system. Nevertheless, significant advances have been made since the protocol was created, many of which are taking us away from a concern about increasing greenhouse gases. If, back in the mid-1990s, we knew what we know today about climate, Kyoto would almost certainly not exist, because we would have concluded it was not necessary.

Click on this link to a Colorado State Climate Science Blog to read up on this new research. It is also being trumpeted by this provocative site.

Fritz Haber April 28, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Science & Technology.
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Fritz Haber – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
1868 – 29 January 1934) was a German chemist, who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1918 for his development of synthetic ammonia, important for fertilizers and explosives. He is also credited as the "father of chemical warfare" for his work developing and deploying chlorine and other poison gases during World War I; this role is thought to have provoked his wife to commit suicide.

Despite his contributions to the German war effort, Haber was forced to emigrate from Germany in 1934 by the Nazis because of his Jewish background; many of his relatives were killed by the Nazis in concentration camps by another of his creations, Zyklon B. He died in the process of emigration.

Circumcision, Fidelity More Effective HIV Prevention Methods Than Condoms, Abstinence, Researchers Say April 28, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in In The News, Lifestyle, Science & Technology.
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Circumcision, Fidelity More Effective HIV Prevention Methods Than Condoms, Abstinence, Researchers Say

A study published in the November 2005 issue of PLoS Medicine of men living in South Africa finds that male circumcision might reduce the risk of men contracting HIV through sexual intercourse with women by about 60%. Male circumcision might also reduce the risk of HIV transmission from HIV-positive men to their female partners, according to a study of couples in Rakai, Uganda (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 2/9).

Google Search 1997 Beta April 27, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Cool Sites, Science & Technology.
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Google Search Engine 19197 Beta

THis is what Google looked like, when it was just a pair of Stanford students hacking away in their dorm room.

Gadgets for the Lazy April 27, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in cool stuff, Lifestyle.
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Wired News: Gadgets for the Lazy
In today's automated world, there's a fine line between efficient time management and laziness. Here are a few gadgets we think cross the line most egregiously. Check out our other photo galleries on our photo blog

SketchUp April 27, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Cool Sites, cool stuff, Lifestyle.
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SketchUp – Home
SketchUp is a simple, free but powerful too, from Google,l for quickly and easily creating, viewing and modifying your 3D ideas.
pencil icon Click on a shape and push or pull it to create your desired 3D geometry.

pencil icon Experiment with color and texture directly on your model.pencil icon Real-time shadow casting lets you see exactly where the sun falls as you model.pencil icon Select from thousands of pre-drawn components to save time drawing.

Image:Mri of the brain April 27, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Cool photos, Science & Technology.
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Image:User-FastFission-brain.gif – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Los Farallones April 27, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Cool photos, Cool Sites, Enviroment, Science & Technology, Streamingvideo, Video.
7 comments

Los Farallones
From PRBO Conservation Science on Farallon National Wildlife Refuge. An account of the trials and tribulations of conducting ecological fieldwork on a small, rocky island 28 miles west of San Francisco (37.7 N, 120 W) This is one of the premier marine wild life breeding sanctuaries in the world. Only accredited researches and scientists are allowed to visit here. Great pictures and tales. Check out the waves from thier storm video

Never Mind Mars and Venus: Who Is ‘the Decider’? April 26, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Lifestyle.
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Never Mind Mars and Venus: Who Is 'the Decider'? – New York Times
"A year or so after the twins were born," Ms. Keller said, "Rob clearly communicated that he would like another child if I felt up to the challenge. I didn't, so we didn't. He could tell that I felt strongly, and he never pushed the issue. For us, marriage is more a finesse game than a power game. It requires 'the suggester' and 'the discusser' as much as it does 'the decider.' "

Magician David Copperfield helps suspects – in jail April 26, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in In The News, Lifestyle.
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Magician David Copperfield robbed after show at Kravis Center
He made 13 people disappear into thin air during his Kravis Center show Sunday night, but magician David Copperfield couldn't duplicate the feat with armed teens who robbed him and two women near the venue two hours later.

Finland Squirms as Its Latest Export Steps Into Spotlight – New York Times April 25, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in In The News, Lifestyle, Music.
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Finland Squirms as Its Latest Export Steps Into Spotlight – New York Times
"In Finland, we have no Eiffel Tower, few real famous artists, it is freezing cold and we suffer from low self-esteem," said Mr. Putaansuu, who, as Lordi, has horns protruding from his forehead and sports long black fingernails.

As he stuck out his tongue menacingly, his red demon eyes glaring, Lordi was surrounded by Kita, an alien-man-beast predator who plays flame-spitting drums inside a cage; Awa, a blood-splattered ghost who howls backup vocals; Ox, a zombie bull who plays bass; and Amen, a mummy in a rubber loincloth who plays guitar.

60 billion emails sent daily worldwide April 25, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in In The News, Lifestyle, Science & Technology.
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60 billion emails sent daily worldwide: Deutsche Telekom | Reuters.com
Internet users around the world send an estimated 60 billion emails every day and many of these are spam or scam attempts, business leaders said on Tuesday.

Why Rice Krispies Go Snap, Crackle, Pop! April 25, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in cool stuff, Lifestyle.
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LiveScience.com – Why Rice Krispies Go Snap, Crackle, Pop!

Starbucks vs. Pancake House April 23, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Lifestyle, Streamingvideo, Video.
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Chad Brisbane sent us this video link in the ongoing Coffee Shop Culture Wars, detailed in our earlier post about Starbucks vs. Dunkin Donuts allegiances. This guy has made a living out of his tirades on the net. His most famous is “Batday”

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