Tuesday, December 31, 2002
From science and computers, a new face of Jesus - a computer-generated picture of Jesus made using forensic evidence is quite unlike most depictions of him today. Via ContraFactos & Argumentos. See the Popular Mechanics article and related news (Google).
#permalink 5:53 PM comment
Own the Entire Rustic Town of Bridgeville, California - something new for the odd things sold on eBay pile. Via ContraFactos & Argumentos.
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Life in plastic - “The average American girl aged between three and 11 owns a staggering ten Barbie dolls.” Via ContraFactos & Argumentos. In related news, Barbie’s pregnant friend gets the push [out of WalMart] and related news (Google).
#permalink 5:35 PM comment
What the world’s poor watch on TV - lots of information here, the most significant being the trend towards local programming in the developing world. Via ContraFactos & Argumentos.Update, January 2, 2003: See also American TV losing out in global ratings war, via ContraFactos & Argumentos.
#permalink 5:24 PM comment
Searching for a Hollywood ending - Peter Livingston has made an anti-war documentary, Over Nine Billion Dead Served, about death in popular movies, and the movie studies don’t want it shown. More interesting than his lawsuit is the figures about the most popular movies and how death is treated in them. See the documentary link above for more information and a trailer. Via dangerousmeta!.
#permalink 2:48 PM comment
Environmentalists cotton on to dangers - about efforts to replace the plastic grocery bag with an environmentally friendly alternative. The alternatives seem to be hemp and jute. Trade Aid is making jute bags. Note to self: check out Green Living. Via dangerousmeta!. On a related note, Taiwan bans plastic shopping bags to reduce waste. Actually there seems to be quite a lot of plastic bag news (Google).
#permalink 1:55 PM comment
Stigmergy and the World-Wide Web - a interesting piece on the internet/blog phenomenon, which of course uses a natural-world analogy. Via Blogdex.
#permalink 12:31 PM comment
During my trip to Mexico, I read Charles Dickens’s David Copperfield. You can actually read the full novel online via the previous link. The book was 745 pages; I started it on the plane to Mexico and finished it on the plan back. It was an excellent novel, with a spectacular ending.
#permalink 12:18 PM comment
Earth to Kalmykia, come in please - did you know that there was a republic in European Russia where Buddhism is the dominant religion? It seems to be quite an interesting place. Via Metafilter. See also official website of Kalmykia and the Kalmyk nationality.
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Monday, December 30, 2002
take a look at FOCI Search and Cluster. also useless inventions. maybe I should download Spybot. check out SeedWiki, which seems to be an easy way of creating a Wiki.
#permalink 11:27 PM comment
Putting a Lid on Chernobyl - about efforts to contain the radioactive remains of Chernobyl. Via Blogdex. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 10:05 PM comment
Raelians - there is so much news about the Raelians, a religious cult, and their cloning efforts that I have just linked to a query on Google News. See also the Raelians official website.
#permalink 8:03 PM comment
U.S. Revises Sex Information, and a Fight Goes On - more on the continuing saga of the Bush administration pushing anti-abortion and abstinence. For example, “The National Cancer Institute, which used to say on its Web site that the best studies showed "no association between abortion and breast cancer," now says the evidence is inconclusive.” See my previous post and earlier post on the subject, related news (Google), and the Kuro5hin discussion. Via Daypop.
#permalink 7:51 PM comment
RUBBISH! - it seems that there is a debate going on in Portland, Oregon about whether police can search your garbage without obtaining a warrant. The police think they can. This article is the story of two journalists who turned the tables and went through the trash of the Mayor, District Attorney, and Police Chief. Two of those three were not exactly pleased (see Mayor Considers Lawsuit Against Snooping Reporters). Via Daypop. My opinion: taking furniture, books, etc., from someone’s garbage is okay, but not reading their papers and other intrusions of privacy (without a warrant). See also related news (Google) and the Metafilter discussion.
#permalink 5:54 PM comment
I got back from Mexico last night (well, this morning really, it was about 2:00 AM). Slept in until 4:00 PM today. I didn’t read any news for a week so I’ve got some catching up to do. Some stories from my trip coming later.
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Sunday, December 22, 2002
Here’s an idea for a website: collect news headlines with the words death, killed, etc. Extract location names and the number of dead from the headlines, and plot it on a map of the world. Little icons, size based on the number of dead, would be linked from the map to articles about the event. Just an idea.
#permalink 2:13 PM comment
Poll: Hillary Clinton top Democratic 2004 choice - how funny would it be if consecutive American presidents were Bush, Clinton, Bush, Clinton? Not that there’s much chance of Bush losing in 2004 though. Via Blogdex.
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Good News - a few days ago I had the idea of a website that only publishes good news. I’m glad to see that others have already done that.
#permalink 11:47 AM comment
I’m off to Mexico for a week. Bye! Update, later: My departure time has been changed from 4:00 PM to 9:25 PM, so I have some time still.
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Saturday, December 21, 2002
The Search Engine Ultimate Interface - this is a new tool I’ve made; it is an interface combining all of the options of all the major search engines.
#permalink 10:35 PM comment
International poll finds U.S. more religious than other wealthy nations - people who said religion was “very important” in their lives: United States 59%, Britain 33%, Canada 30%, Italy 27%, South Korea 25%, Germany 21%, Japan 12%, France 11%. Senegal had the most with 97%; more data is in the article. Via dangerousmeta!. See also related news (Google).
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Friday, December 20, 2002
Rebuilding the Food Pyramid - apparently the food pyramid is “grossly flawed.” No surprise to many people. Via ContraFactos & Argumentos. See also related news (Google).
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On following the [immigration] rules - the bureaucracy Danny O’Brien experiences trying to become a US permanent resident. Via Boing Boing.
#permalink 4:13 PM comment
Body Image Woes Add Up - a study has found that while men do equally well on math tests while wearing a swimsuit or sweater, women do much worse when wearing a swimsuit. Via Metafilter, where many posters dismiss the results.
Update, 3:41 PM: On a related note, see Girl Culture by Lauren Greenfield who has just written a book by that name, about girls and body image. Via Metafilter.
#permalink 3:03 PM comment
Gene Study Identifies 5 Main Human Populations - a Stanford lab, studying the DNA from 52 human groups suggests that there are five principal groups, roughly corresponding to “Africa, Europe, Asia, Melanesia and the Americas.” Melanesia is a group of Pacific islands. Via New Scientist. See also related news (Google).
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Thursday, December 19, 2002
Fingerprints out, body odor in - just one of the many biometric methods being studied. Others including fingerprints/finger scan, retina/iris scan, faces, hands, voices, and gaits. See the Biometrics FAQ. Via FARK. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 2:34 PM comment
Euro Diffusion - while the Euro is used 15 countries, each country has a different “national side” to their coin. As all the coins are valid in all the countries, the coins diffuse, and it is interesting (and useful) to watch it happen and track the numbers. Metafilter has more.
#permalink 1:49 PM comment
Roh wins S Korean elections - Roh Moo-Hyun will take over from Kim Dae Jung, who the law prevented from running again, as president of South Korea. “Turnout among the nation’s 35 million eligible voters was 70.2% - almost 11 percentage points lower than in the 1997 presidential election.” Via Google News.
#permalink 1:23 PM comment
Too-tall Christmas tree makes over the top sight gag - a family has arranged their Christmas tree so that it appears to go through the roof. “It was the only time in my life I’ve used the Pythagorean theorem, and it actually worked.” Via Daypop.
#permalink 12:34 PM comment
Celebrity worship - a British study has found that “the lower a person’s religious conviction, the more likely he or she is to revere a particular celebrity -- even, in some cases, behaving in ways they believe their hero would approve of...celebrity worship does indeed play the same role as religion in many people’s lives.” See also Satire, Analysis, and Commentary on Contemporary Celebrity Worship.
#permalink 7:27 AM comment
Public misled over fire-safe cigarettes - “While tobacco companies succeeded in developing "fire-safe" cigarettes, they consistently claimed smokers would find them unacceptable...At the beginning of January 2003, New York state will achieve a world first by introducing fire safety regulations for cigarettes to combat the problem.” See also related news (Google).
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Wednesday, December 18, 2002
Genocide warning in Ivory Coast - not great news in Côte d’Ivoire, which “was regarded as one of the most prosperous countries in West Africa” until several years ago. Via dangerousmeta!. See also related news (Google).
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Tuesday, December 17, 2002
Warring Congo factions sign peace deal - if this holds it would be truly great news. The Democratic Republic of the Congo and seven neighbouring countries have been fighting since 1998. See Global Issues: The Democratic Republic of Congo and Great Lakes Conflict for more information. “In theory, rebel and militia leaders will form an interim government in January to bring enough peace and stability to allow the first democratic elections since independence from Belgium in 1960.” Via Google News.
#permalink 10:13 PM comment
Poll shows Bush’s support waning for attack on Iraq - “more than two-thirds of Americans believe the president has failed to make the case that a war with Iraq is justified.” However, “traditionally, support is low before a president declares war, but increases after troops are in the field.” Via Google News.
#permalink 3:53 PM comment
McDonald’s to report first-ever quarterly loss - “same-store sales — receipts at locations open at least a year — are down 2 per cent so far this year.” Much of the loss seems to be in their “Asia-Pacific/Middle East/Africa arm.” Via Google News.
Update, 4:16 PM: If You Can’t Beat ’Em, Pander to ’Em, which describes McDonald’s responses to anti-Americanism around the world, via FARK.
#permalink 3:46 PM comment
US missile defence shield operational by 2004 - “The first components of the controversial US missile defence system will be operational by 2004 under plans announced by US President George Bush on Tuesday.” Here in Canada (which would be necessary for the system), the government has been reluctant to support the plan. See Canada not part of missile defence shield from a few days ago. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 3:33 PM comment
Iraqis would support war to overthrow Saddam, says survey - that’s what the survey says; I’m not sure of the accuracy. Via Metafilter. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 7:27 AM comment
Canadian Senate Approves Kyoto Protocol - this follows [Canadian] Parliament votes to ratify Kyoto from a few days before. Good news for Canada, I only hope we’ll implement it. Also, [Prime Minister] Clark signs Kyoto Protocol, in New Zealand. Via Google News. See also Kyoto Protocol.
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Monday, December 16, 2002
check out The New Politics of Consumption, from Metafilter. Much later comments on rebeccablood.net
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Master memories are made not born - this study, by University College London, using an MRI, suggests that people with better memories just use better mnemonic techniques. See also related news (Google), and memory improvement.
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Sunday, December 15, 2002
Bin Laden ‘exploits Palestinian cause’ - “Yasser Arafat has accused Osama Bin Laden of exploiting the Palestinian struggle for an independent state.” Via Blogdex.
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Saturday, December 14, 2002
Popdex has got a search now
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Fake tree may hide new cellular tower - is disguising cellular towers a good idea? Via Geisha asobi blog.
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Friday, December 13, 2002
A Mighty Wind Against Waste - the Windhexe, or “tornado in a can,” by Vortex Dehydration, seems to be a tool looking for an application. It seems to be finding some. Very neat. Via Metafilter. See also the Slashdot discussion and the photo library.
#permalink 3:40 PM comment
EU poised for historic deal - Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia may all be joining the EU by 2004. “But there was disappointment for Turkey after the leaders decided it would have to wait at least two more years before it is invited to hold membership talks.” Via Blogdex. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 2:24 PM comment
U.S. has photos of secret Iran nuclear sites - “Commercial satellite photographs taken in September show a nuclear facility near the town of Natanz and another one near Arak.” Via Blogdex. Also Iran: Nuclear Plants Open to Inspection, a rebuttal. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 2:02 PM comment
I hardly slept last night, working on my World Issues presentation. I was all ready, and I never even presented. Now I need to make overheads and stuff...
#permalink 12:43 PM comment
Wednesday, December 11, 2002
Google Webquotes, Google Viewer, and the Zeitgeist Timeline 2002 are new happenings at Google. The first two are new Google Labs, so I’ll eventually add them to my Google Ultimate Interface. I’d still like to see them implement Google Glossary. Via Google Weblog.
#permalink 6:50 AM comment
Tuesday, December 10, 2002
I was sick for a few days, hence the lack of posts. Been quite busy tonight and will be probably for this week and next. ugg... I haven’t been surfing like usual, but I did notice Popdex, which seems to be essentially Daypop Top 40/Blogdex. Not bad on first glance, but it’ll need something new to distinguish itself.
#permalink 11:02 PM comment
Friday, December 06, 2002
The News Can Kill You - about articles collected in one day about things that could kill people. Via ContraFactos & Argumentos. Update, December 31: see also Happy New Fear.
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War with Iraq could cost US $2 trillion: Study - via dangerousmeta!.
#permalink 4:40 PM comment
Science of Art: Walking on the Wind - Theo Jansen has created machines that “walk” when the wind blows. Check out these videos. Very neat. Via Boing Boing. Update, 4:19 PM: see also the FARK discussion.
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Who Would Buy That? - a blog about “auction oddities from all over the web.” Via Neat New Stuff on the Net. See also my previous post about odd things sold on eBay.
#permalink 3:36 PM comment
First passenger maglev train set for lift-off - The maglev (magnetic levitation) train in Shanghai, China, was built by Transrapid (a German company). “It will be the fastest commercial train in the world.” See also Transrapid-USA, and related news (Google).
#permalink 3:16 PM comment
Confronting China’s hidden epidemic - “Two Canadians are leading a campaign to lift [the] veil of secrecy surrounding suicide.” Apparently rural Chinese women have the highest suicide rate in the world, “China has a suicide rate of 23 per 100,000 people, about twice the rate in many Western countries,” and everyone is afraid/ashmed to talk about it. One of the Canadians is Mark Rowswell, “China’s best-loved foreigner,” who is a comedian on Chinese television (his character is Dashan). The other is Dr. Phillips, who now leads the Beijing Suicide Research and Prevention Centre. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 2:15 PM comment
Panoramas.dk - lots of neat panoramas (flat images combined to make 360° views) from around the world, such as Bali - Tulamben wreck underwater. Requires Quicktime 5. Via Daypop.
#permalink 2:00 PM comment
Chechen rebels phoned Gulf during siege - just another article that leads me to think that al Qaeda has been successful in turning many regional conflicts into one global conflict. Via Daypop.
#permalink 1:25 PM comment
Science.gov - check it out, probably add to science page
#permalink 1:13 PM comment
Water found at Martian south pole - the water found on Mars is frozen, according to the study led by Timothy Titus of the US Geological Survey. Via Blogdex. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 7:36 AM comment
Thursday, December 05, 2002
Forgotten Pippi Longstocking Work Unearthed - written in 1949, “Pippi Longstocking Celebrates Christmas” may be published next Christmas. Via FARK. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 8:06 PM comment
Create Pop-Up Notes with DHTML - via dangerousmeta!.
#permalink 7:17 PM comment
What the World Thinks in 2002 - “How Global Publics View: Their Lives, Their Countries, The World, America... The Pew Global Attitudes survey interviewed more than 38,000 people in 44 nations.” Lots of interesting results. Via Blogdex. See also the Metafilter discussion, the FARK discussion, and related news (Google).
#permalink 5:42 PM comment
Fly with Nudists - once in the air on this airplane trip to Mexico, “the captain will announce that passengers may remove all of their clothes.” Note that it is the second article on the page. Via the Globe and Mail.
#permalink 7:39 AM comment
Wondir is out in Alpha now.
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Wednesday, December 04, 2002
Who2 Loops - lists of people who have something in common, such as Who’s What? (people who’s name lives on), Recluses, and Actors Who do Cartoon Voices. By Who2, a biography website. Via dangerousmeta!.
#permalink 9:39 PM comment
US States with More Gun Owners Have More Murders - that’s a big surprise. The study was by the Harvard School of Public Health. Via dangerousmeta!.
#permalink 3:57 PM comment
The mother of all package tours - read about Johann Hari’s experiences from his trip to Iraq. Via Blogdex.
#permalink 2:01 PM comment
A Military History Timeline of War and Conflict Across the Globe - from 3000 B.C. to A.D. 1999. Via Metafilter.
#permalink 8:27 AM comment
Tuesday, December 03, 2002
5000-pixel wide panorama of Tokyo - it is quite a city. There is also a second and third panorama. Via Robot Wisdom. See also Bird’s Eye View for Airports - photos taken from airplanes of airports in Japan and around the world, by Ito Noriyuki.
#permalink 7:33 PM comment
Underneath, Saudi Women Keep Their Secrets - “Many women are so humiliated by the prospect of discussing their bodies with male salesmen that they just guess. As a result, Ms. Basheer says, about 85 percent of Saudi women are wearing the wrong size bras... More than half of the graduates from the kingdom’s universities and colleges are now women, though they make up less than 7 percent of the work force.” Via dangerousmeta!.
#permalink 3:21 PM comment
Toyota, Honda deliver first zero-emission hydrogen cars - these “market ready” hydrogen fuel cell cars will only be in California. According to First US Fuel Cell Car Delivered, “Honda has built a solar powered fuel station in Los Angeles, and plans to provide its clients with mobile refueling facilities.” Via FARK. See also related news (Google), a Honda press release, and Toyota Advances Marketing of Fuel Cell-Electric Hybrid SUV.
#permalink 2:35 PM comment
The Balloon Hat Experience - “In 1996, Addi Somekh and Charlie Eckert” travelled around the world (34 countries), made balloon hats for people, and then photographed them. They took over 10,000 pictures, dozens of which you can see on their website. Via Metafilter.
#permalink 2:02 PM comment
Monday, December 02, 2002
Artist Hopes Dairy Herd Makes Poetry - an art student painted words on cows “then let them wander around to see if they could compose poetry.” Via FARK. Update, Dec. 4 9:55 PM: Woolly writing creates new poetry - it seems that the same thing is going on in the UK, with sheep. Via Daypop. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 2:44 PM comment
Amsterdam Real Time - volunteers in Amsterdam have been wearing GPS devices for about two months. All of their movements are recorded and used to build a map. “This map does not register streets or blocks of houses, but consists of the sheer movements of real people.” Neat stuff. Via Boing Boing.
On a related topic, Delegates tagged and tracked - scientists at a convention used radio tags to track “where colleagues with similar interests are hanging out.” Via ContraFactos & Argumentos.
#permalink 2:32 PM comment
The Obsolescence of Deterrence - this article suggests that deterring Iraq from using it’s weapons was working before Bush’s idea of preemptive war. Via Blogdex. Also, UK unveils Iraq ‘torture’ dossier, about the Iraq dossier released by the UK government which describes the human rights violations in Iraq. See also my previous post. Via Blogdex.
#permalink 1:53 PM comment
‘Click here’: Needless words - exactly! Via Blogdex.
#permalink 1:35 PM comment
White House Faith-Based Advisor Turns on Rove; Claims all Decisions are Politisized - John J. DiIulio Jr. says that “all decisions are politicized by Bush’s top adviser Karl Rove, and that the policy staff is afraid to confront him... There is no precedent in any modern White House for what is going on in this one: a complete lack of a policy apparatus. What you’ve got is everything, and I mean everything, being run by the political arm. It’s the reign of the Mayberry Machiavellis.” Via Blogdex. See also related news (Google). Update, Dec. 4 9:45 PM: The DiIulio Letter (full text), via Blogdex.
#permalink 1:29 PM comment
RadioShack ends asking for customer info - Radio Shack wants to “focus on providing a better shopping experience for customers.” Via Daypop. See also Radio Shack’s press release and the Slashdot discussion.
#permalink 1:10 PM comment
Daypop is back. Again.
#permalink 12:57 PM comment
China to lift condom ad ban - to help stem the tide of HIV/AIDS. Via Linkfilter. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 9:34 AM comment
Project Dole - two guys fill an apartment with furniture they made from banana boxes. Via Boing Boing.
#permalink 9:15 AM comment
At Justice, Freedom Not to Release Information - US Attorney General John D. Ashcroft has told federal FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) officers that the Department of Justice will always defend them if they withhold information. As the Washington Post puts it, they “can bend -- perhaps even break -- one law.” Via Boing Boing. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 9:11 AM comment
UK man ‘makes rain with a giant egg-beater’ - Stephen Salter, a professor at The University of Edinburgh, will “create a 60m-high turbine to suck water out of the sea and turn it into water vapour through nozzles, spraying it into the atmosphere.” Via Google News.
#permalink 8:57 AM comment
Patriot Act earns council’s ‘no’ vote - Eugene, a city in Oregon is “the 15th city in the United States... to formally seek reform or repeal of the USA Patriot Act.” Via Blogdex. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 8:40 AM comment
Sunday, December 01, 2002
Study: GM mutants as toxic as parent plants - when a genetically modified plant with an “anti-pest gene” was bred with its natural relative, almost half of the resultant plants were toxic to insects. As a Greenpeace spokesperson says, “Once we release GM crops there’s no going back. The genie is out of the bottle.” Via Google News.
#permalink 10:26 PM comment
Mark Fiore’s Animated Political Cartoons - some of these a great. Via Blogdex.
#permalink 12:55 PM comment
Recursive Flash Animation - a picture of a picture of a picture... Via Blogdex.
#permalink 12:16 PM comment
In Terror War, 2nd Track for Suspects - “The Bush administration is developing a parallel legal system in which terrorism suspects...may be investigated, jailed, interrogated, tried and punished without legal protections.” Via Blogdex. See also related news (Google). Update, 12:55 PM: Administration Begins to Rewrite Decades-Old Spying Restrictions via Blogdex.
#permalink 12:09 PM comment
Husbands and wives who cheat on each other are more likely to stay together - the results of an Italian study. Via Linkfilter. Update, Dec. 5 6:50 PM: Extramarital sex hazardous to health? - “Extramarital sex can increase your risk of having a heart attack.” Via Linkfilter. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 12:17 AM comment
Norway set to ban public smoking - the plan, for 2004, would be the first in the world. Via Linkfilter. See also related news (Google).
#permalink 12:10 AM comment
Jews and Proselytizing - an interesting post and discussion on Metafilter.
#permalink 12:01 AM comment
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