June 5th, 2007


8868 - tues

BHK made some lovely lunch for herself and Cathy - stir fried veggies over brown rice. I snarfed that down for supper as soon as I got home - she opted instead to have leftover hot dogs grilled yesterday.


I wonder if Gorbachev would have gone through with Glasnost if he knew it'd lead to this:Collapse )

After wrapping up an online conference last Thursday, Putin took a few minutes to answer several of the most-popular questions sent in by Russian Internet users Collapse )

when reporters asked him after the conference whether Russia planned to use “gigantic, humanoid war robots” to defend itself.

Asked to elaborate about what he meant, Putin said: “These are unmanned aerial vehicles. And maybe the time will come for gigantic robots. Collapse )

Asked about the possible awakening of the giant mythical octopus Cthulhu, the fourth-most popular question among the more than 150,000 sent to Putin, he said that he believed something more serious was behind the question. Cthulhu was invented by novelist H.P. Lovecraft and was said to be sleeping beneath the Pacific Ocean.

Putin said he viewed mysterious forces with suspicion and advised those who took them seriously to read the Bible, Koran or other religious books.Collapse )


Yesterday jwz posted a link to an article about how plastics are choking the oceans. It talks about the North Pacific subtropical gyre, a swirling mass of water between California and Hawaii that's slowly been collecting various plastics for years. This mass of plastic is now twice the size of the state of Texas and just sort of hanging out, slowly swirling around like a giant toilet bowl.

The most disturbing thing (other than a picture of a turtle whose shell has been deformed by a ring of plastic) is that these plastics are breaking down into smaller and smaller pieces in our water supply.Scientists are still studying the impact ingesting these plastics is having, but some speculate it may be one of the causes of the rising obesity and diabetes rates in first world countries.

Also found via jwz, good news about tinfoil hats. They prevent cancer. Researchers have used low-intensity, intermediate-frequency electric fields to combat an aggressive brain cancer known as glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). The strategy pinpoints tumors without invasive brain surgery and has more than doubled survival time in preliminary studies.

The new approach exploits a cog in the cell-division pathway. When cells divide, a molecular motor called the microtubule spindle helps segregate chromosomes into the resulting daughter cells. Resembling a set of strings, the spindle is made of electrically polar macromolecules that are sensitive to electric fields. Previous work has shown that if a 200-kHz field is applied to these macromolecules, the spindle can't form properly. As a result, cells stop dividing and eventually die.

The device is ideal for those with GBM because it only acts on the brain and lacks chemotherapy's systemic side effects, says Eric Wong, a neuro-oncologist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston , Massachusetts . Because tumor cells in the brain frequently divide, normal brain cells would remain unaffected by the electric fields.


They took JD to the hospital – he’s been very sick, and can’t get his fever any lower than 101 (it’s right at 103 now) - I hope he's ok by now.



Lasse Klein has designed the coolest lamp ever. I would like one, please.


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