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What’s Next after the iphone & itv March 31, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Humor, Streamingvideo, Technology, Video.
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Thanks to Juan Marcos

Top 100 April Fool’s Day Hoaxes Of All Time March 31, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Humor, Life.
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Top 100 April Fool’s Day Hoaxes Of All Time
(as judged by notoriety, absurdity, and number of people duped)

SHARKWATER – THe Movie March 29, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Enviroment, Streamingvideo, Video.
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SHARKWATER – In Theatres March 23, 2007

So far only showing in Canada and New York, this one sounds like a the documentary to counteract the deleterious hysteria started by “Jaws”.

For environmentalists, the film is a must-see; for everyone else, Sharkwater is gripping storytelling, a kind of cross between the sheer biological poetry of ‘Winged Migration’ and engaged politics of ‘Bowling for Columbine’.”“A contemporary masterpiece, combining modern-day ecological drama with some of the most provocative shark footage to ever see the light of day”Mongo Nikol, Ecopathic.blogspot.com

Cingular launches U.S. mobile banking March 27, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Business, Technology.
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Cingular launches U.S. mobile banking | Technology | Reuters
AT&T Chief Operating Officer Randall Stephenson talked about the mobile banking service in a keynote speech at the CTIA wireless technology conference on Tuesday. In Japan they use their cell phone like a credit card at Soft Drink Machines and parking meters. While this announcement was interesting and you can click on the link to see if your bank is participating, what really blew me away was this quote from Stephenson :

“…while four babies are born every second in China, about 25 people are signing up for wireless services in the country.”

Tastemakers: Chefs March 27, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Business, Food, Life.
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Tastemakers: Chefs – Forbes.com
You no longer have to live in New York or California to taste the best food in America. That’s because young chefs have set up shop in smaller cities and rural areas, many in order to be closer to the farmers and ranchers who supply their raw materials. For others, it’s because the palates of small town diners have grown more sophisticated.

It’s no wonder Americans now dish out nearly half their food budgets on dining out, according to the National Restaurant Association. Sales in the industry have grown steadily for more than 15 years and are expected to increase 5% in 2007, to $537 billion, with $181.6 billion of that coming from full service restaurants. Click on the link for the list of chefs in pictures, as well as the rest of the article.

Painted Fingers March 26, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Art, Cool photos.
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Click on a picture to enlarge or on the FingerPaint underlined link for more of Italian artist Guido Daniele. Thanks to Renea Lesley

Home on the Revenge March 25, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Cool photos, Humor, News.

A city councilman, Mark Easton, lives in this neighborhood. He had a beautiful view of the east mountains until a new neighbor purchased the lot below his house and built. Apparently the new home was 18 inches higher than the ordinances would allow, so MarkEaston, mad about his lost view, went to the city to make sure they enforced the lower roof line ordinance. Mark and his new neighbor had some great arguments about this as you can imagine – not great feelings. The new neighbor had to drop the roof line – no doubt at great expense.

Recently Mark Easton called the city and informed them that his new neighbor had installed some vents on the side of his home. Mark didn’t like the look of these vents and asked the city to investigate. When they went to Mark’s home to see the vent view, this is what they found… (more…)

Extreme to Death – Dan Osman March 25, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Sports, Streamingvideo, Video.

Outside Online – Dan Osman | Outside Online
At 35 years old, Dan Osman had long since become a famous name in the world of extreme—many would say senseless—risk environment. For close to a decade his bizarre specialty was jumps like the one at Leaning Tower: single-rope plunges from bridges or cliffs that Osman would make for videos and commercials and, more often, just for the sheer hell of it. By the late eighties Osman had made a name for himself as an accomplished rock and ice climber and as a no-ropes free soloist. Check out this Speed Climbing Video that Rand Marks sent us as an example.

. But Osman’s interest in the sport was flagging. In 1989, working with a top rope to put up a 5.13 climb at Cave Rock that he called Phantom Lord, he fell 50 times trying to place a single bolt above a particularly torturous move. In the process he discovered that he was more exhilarated by the falling than the climbing.

“I’m not sure why,” Rogalski said. “Maybe when a couple of the hot French guys came along and did Slayer on sight—a 5.14 route that took Dan a year to put up. Sometime after that he sort of drifted away from serious climbing and got very into the jumping.  5.14 is a perceived degree of difficulty level that climbers use to catalog various climbing routes. Here is an 11 miniute video primarily on the jumping and addiction to the fear of death that Outside covers in this article on Dan.

Creature that has not had sex for 100m years March 22, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in News, Science & Technology.
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Creature that has not had sex for 100m years-News-UK-Science-TimesOnline
A tiny creature that has not had sex for 100 million years has overturned the theory that animals need to mate to create variety. Analysis of the jaw shapes of bdelloid rotifers, combined with genetic data, revealed that the animals have diversified under pressure of natural selection.

Researchers say that their study “refutes the idea that sex is necessary for diversification into evolutionary species”.

The microscopic animals, less than four times the length of a human sperm, are all female, yet have evolved into different species that fill different ecological niches. Two sister species were found to be living together on the body of a water louse. One of them specialised in living around the louse’s legs and the other stayed close to the chest.

Take this Camel to Bed March 22, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Cool photos, Enviroment.
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Click on this picture and then look carefully and try to find the Camels. You have heard of desert mirages. Now you are only seeing desert shadows. Thanks to Jack Bahl.

Heavy metal a comfort for the bright child March 21, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Lifestyle, Music.
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Heavy metal a comfort for the bright child | Science News | Connected | Telegraph
Intelligent teenagers often listen to heavy metal music to cope with the pressures associated with being talented, according to research.

The results of a study of more than 1,000 of the brightest five per cent of young people will come as relief to parents whose offspring, usually long-haired, are devotees of Iron Maiden, AC/DC and their musical descendants.

Researchers found that, far from being a sign of delinquency and poor academic ability, many adolescent “metalheads” are extremely bright and often use the music to help them deal with the stresses and strains of being gifted social outsiders.

Life Re-Enacting Art March 20, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Art, Life, Lifestyle.
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A Danish Painting Inspires a Party Here – March 20, 2007 – The New York Sun
“I am a simple person when it comes to art,” Mr. Oden, who grew up in Texas and comes from a long line of cowboys, said. “I don’t like impressionistic and modern. What I really love is paintings of people. I connect more when there’s something I can see — activity — interesting people, doing interesting things.”

Mr. Oden loved the image of the painting so much that he recently invited a group of friends to his house to re-enact the party that the painting depicts: a centennial celebration hosted by the Danish industrialist Jacob Moresco in honor of his textile business, held at his estate, Adelaide, located in Ordrup, Denmark. Here in present-day New York, Mr. Oden asked his guests to dress in white-tie, as the figures in the painting are dressed. Forwarded by Richard Collier. Photo RJ Mickelson.

Another Inconvenient Truth March 19, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Business, Enviroment, philosophy & politics, Politics.
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Another Inconvenient Truth  Behind the feel-good hype of carbon offsets, some of the deals don’t deliver
More broadly, the proliferation of suspect RECs and offsets may persuade consumers and businesses that preventing climate change comes cheap, says Anja S. Kollmuss, outreach coordinator of the Tufts Climate Initiative, an advocacy group affiliated with Tufts University. “We cannot solve the climate crisis by buying offsets and claiming to be climate-neutral,” she adds. “Nature does not fall for accounting schemes.”

Many people have commented that modern environmentalism is basically a religion. The carbon offsets are the modern equivalent of the Catholic Church selling indulgences.

Illusion in art – pictures by Rob Gonsalves March 19, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Art, Cool photos.
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Adventix Blog | Unbelievable graphic art pictures by Rob Gonsalves

Russia to Iran: Pay Up March 19, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Business, Geopolitics, News.
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Russia Blog: Russia to Iran: Pay Up
The Islamic Republic of Iran is apparently running short on cash. According to the International Herald Tribune, the Iranian regime has twice failed to pay $25 million in monthly payments to Rosatom, Russia’s atomic energy agency, for work already completed on the Bushehr nuclear reactor.

Rosatom executives have confirmed that the Iranians failed to make their payment in full for the month of January and have not paid at all for this month. As a result, Rosatom has cancelled plans to deliver civilian-grade nuclear fuel to the reactor next month and is threatening to delay work at Bushehr. Russia is not willing to subsidize Iranian energy projects anymore than it was willing to keep subsidizing the former Soviet republics with cheap natural gas.

The Council on Foreign Relations recently released a report describing the decline of Iranian oil and gas production due to mismanagement and a lack of new investment. Last month MSNBC reported that the U.S. has secretly cut a deal with Saudi Arabia to boost Saudi production, thereby decreasing world oil prices and putting more economic pressure on Tehran (it costs the Saudis about half as much to pump a barrel of oil out of the ground as the Iranians). Russia Blog predicted that the U.S. might pursue this strategy to financially squeeze the mullahs in our post The Long War in the Middle East and Russian Oil back in August 2006.

Antarctic Glaciers’ Sloughing Of Ice Has Scientists at a Loss March 19, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Enviroment, News, Science & Technology.
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Antarctic Glaciers’ Sloughing Of Ice Has Scientists at a Loss – washingtonpost.com
Wingham, of University College London, and Andrew Shepherd of the University of Edinburgh said satellite radar readings show that overall, each year the ice loss from Greenland and Antarctica amounts to about 10 percent of the rise in the global sea level, which totals about one-tenth of an inch per year. The net loss of Antarctic ice is estimated to be 25 billion metric tons a year, despite the growth of the ice sheet in East Antarctica.

In Greenland, glaciers appear to be moving more quickly to sea because melting ice has allowed the sheet to slide more easily over the rock and dirt below. In Antarctica, the loss is believed to be associated with the breaking off into seawater of ice deep under the ice sheet with little-understood internal dynamics that put increased pressure on the massive ice streams.

Cell phones safe to use in hospitals March 17, 2007

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Cell phones safe to use in hospitals: U.S. study
Calls made on cell phones do not affect hospital medical devices, U.S. researchers said on Friday, but store anti-theft alarms might make implanted heart devices misfire.

Tests at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota showed normal use of cell phones, also called mobile phones, caused no noticeable interference with patient care equipment, they said. Dr. David Hayes and colleagues said their tests suggest the ban is unmerited. They tested cell phones using two different technologies from different carriers, switching them on near 192 different medical devices. During 300 tests run over five months, they reported no trouble with the equipment

Angry Whale Attacks Boat, Kills Japanese Fisherman March 17, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Enviroment, News, Streamingvideo, Video.
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Maybe all of the Japanese government’s attempts to undo the current whaling Ban made it back to this young 50 ton whale.

And here is another harrowing whale of a tale from a diver in the Dominican Republic.

The Sky Is Falling. Really. March 17, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Enviroment, News, Science & Technology.
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The Sky Is Falling. Really. – New York Times
AMERICANS who read the papers or watch Jay Leno have been aware for some time now that there is a slim but real possibility — about 1 in 45,000 — that an 850-foot-long asteroid called Apophis could strike Earth with catastrophic consequences on April 13, 2036. What few probably realize is that there are thousands of other space objects that could hit us in the next century that could cause severe damage, if not total destruction.

On the promising side, scientists have a good grasp of the risks of a cosmic fender-bender, and have several ideas that could potentially stave off disaster. Unfortunately, the government doesn’t seem to have any clear plan to put this expertise into action.

Meteorite Collision simulation

[vodpod id=ExternalVideo.558961&w=425&h=350&fv=]

Record meteorite hit Norway

High-tech slots could transform gambling March 17, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Business, Technology.
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High-tech slots could transform gambling
Roughly half the 835,000 slot machines nationwide have video displays and many are networked, but industry officials acknowledge that most are flops, lacking the visceral “clunk-clunk-clunk” of wheels hitting the payline.

Video slots with an authentic feel are the holy grail for manufacturers.

Ed Rogich, an IGT vice president, said players who tested video display prototypes earlier this year could hardly tell the difference between them and manual reels. That’s a good sign: Many old-school gamblers prefer low-tech slots.

Hydrogen Storage Technology Breakthrough March 14, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Business, Enviroment, News, Technology.
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Hydrogen Storage: UNBF Researchers Achieve Technology Breakthrough — March 7, 2007 – News@UNB
Hydrogen gas is typically stored under pressure in large metal cylinders, approximately four feet high. These cylinders are heavy and expensive to transport. Since they are under pressure, they also pose a safety hazard.

“We’ve reached a milestone with our ability to condense hydrogen into a usable solid,” said Dr. McGrady. “The next step is to produce a safe, compact storage system for the compound that is both lightweight and affordable.”

The research is expected to produce reversible hydrogen storage materials that can be processed into a powder for use in limitless commercial applications. (more…)

What’s So Funny? Well, Maybe Nothing March 13, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Humor, Life, Science & Technology.
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What’s So Funny? Well, Maybe Nothing – New York Times
He and Professor Provine figure that the first primate joke — that is, the first action to produce a laugh without physical contact — was the feigned tickle, the same kind of coo-chi-coo move parents make when they thrust their wiggling fingers at a baby. Professor Panksepp thinks the brain has ancient wiring to produce laughter so that young animals learn to play with one another. The laughter stimulates euphoria circuits in the brain and also reassures the other animals that they’re playing, not fighting.

Humans are laughing by the age of four months and then progress from tickling to the Three Stooges to more sophisticated triggers for laughter (or, in some inexplicable cases, to Jim Carrey movies). Laughter can be used cruelly to reinforce a group’s solidarity and pride by mocking deviants and insulting outsiders, but mainly it’s a subtle social lubricant. It’s a way to make friends and also make clear who belongs where in the status hierarchy.

NIST bans Vista in major blow to Microsoft March 13, 2007

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NIST bans Vista in major blow to Microsoft | ZDNet Government Blog | ZDNet.com
The National Institute of Standards and Technology isn’t just another federal agency – it sets the standards for federal computing. And NIST doesn’t like Vista. In fact it has banned it from its internal networks, according to document obtained by InformationWeek. IW obtained a copy of the formal agenda for an April 10 meeting at which tech staffers will explain their concerns and discuss “the current ban of this operating system on NIST networks,” the newsweekly said.

This follows news that the Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration are also banning Vista. FAA CIO Dave Bowen told InformationWeek he wold consider running a combination of Linux and Google Apps. Among other things, Bowen said he is concerned that Windows Vista may be incompatible with many software applications already in use at the FAA

To Have, Hold and Cherish, Until Bedtime March 12, 2007

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To Have, Hold and Cherish, Until Bedtime – New York Times
Not since the Victorian age of starched sheets and starchy manners, builders and architects say, have there been so many orders for separate bedrooms. Or separate sleeping nooks. Or his-and-her wings.

In interviews, couples and sociologists say that often it has nothing to do with sex. More likely, it has to do with snoring. Or with children crying. Or with getting up and heading for the gym at 5:30 in the morning. Or with sending e-mail messages until well after midnight.

In a survey in February by the National Association of Home Builders, builders and architects predicted that more than 60 percent of custom houses would have dual master bedrooms by 2015, according to Gopal Ahluwalia, staff vice president of research at the builders association. Some builders say more than a quarter of their new projects already do.

Dark energy – The Universe – Out There – March 12, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Enviroment, Science & Technology, Technology.
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Dark energy – The Universe – Physics – Out There – Richard Panek – New York Times

The Sunday NY Times magazine ran this “out there”article, thankfully pointed-out by rather “out there”Bob Bopp.
Einstein spent the last 30 years of his life trying to reconcile: how to unify his new physics of the very large (general relativity) with the new physics of the very small (quantum mechanics). What makes the two incompatible — where the physics breaks down — is gravity.

In physics, gravity is the ur-inference. Even Newton admitted that he was making it up as he went along. That a force of attraction might exist between two distant objects, he once wrote in a letter, is “so great an Absurdity that I believe no Man who has in philosophical Matters a competent Faculty of thinking can ever fall into it.” Yet fall into it we all do on a daily basis, and physicists are no exception. “I don’t think we really understand what gravity is,” Vera Rubin says. “So in some sense we’re doing an awful lot on something we don’t know much about.”

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