Saturday, June 12, 2010

Merely Human? That’s So Yesterday
by Ashlee Vance
New York Times

ON a Tuesday evening this spring,Sergey Brin, the co-founder of Google, became part man and part machine. About 40 people, all gathered here at a NASA campus for a nine-day, $15,000 course at Singularity University, saw it happen.
Men on Horseback
by Bruce Barcott
New York Times

Why does Custer persist? Nearly 134 years after his last stand, a military debacle that cost the lives of all 210 men under his immediate command, George Armstrong Custer remains such an iconic figure in the American pageant that mere mention of his name evokes an entirely overromanticized era in the American West. By all rights he should be a footnote. That he enjoys the glory of single-name recognition is a testament to the power of personality, show business and savvy public relations. Custer wasn’t just an Indian fighter. He was one of the first self-made American celebrities.
The Animal-Cruelty Syndrome
by Charles Siebert
New York Times

On a late May afternoon last year in southwest Baltimore, a 2-year-old female pit bull terrier was doused in gasoline and set alight. A young city policewoman on her regular patrol of the neighborhood of boarded-up row houses and redbrick housing developments turned her squad car onto the 1600 block of Presbury Street and saw a cloud of black smoke rising from the burning dog. She hopped out, ran past idle onlookers and managed to put out the flames with her sweater. The dog, subsequently named Phoenix, survived for four days with burns over 95 percent of her body, but soon began to succumb to kidney failure and had to be euthanized.
Mind Over Mass Media
by Steven Pinker
New York Times

NEW forms of media have always caused moral panics: the printing press, newspapers, paperbacks and television were all once denounced as threats to their consumers’ brainpower and moral fiber.
Inflation, and We Mean That in a Good Way
by Dexter Ford
New York Times

MOTORCYCLE racing is not for the faint of heart — or for the fragile of collarbone.

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Empire That Was Russia
The Prokudin-Gorskii Photographic Record Recreated
The Library of Congress (LOC)
Be sure and read, "Making Color Images from Prokudin-Gorskii's Negatives"

Thursday, June 10, 2010

U.S. Moves Toward 'Majority Minority'
By Conor Dougherty
Wall Street Journal

Whites are on the verge of becoming a minority among newborn children in the U.S., marking a demographic shift that is already reshaping the nation's politics and economy.
Why Patients Aren’t Getting the Shingles Vaccine
By Pauline W. Chen, M.D.
New York Times

Four years ago at age 78, R., a retired professional known as much for her small-town Minnesotan resilience as her commitment to public service, developed a fleeting rash over her left chest. The rash, which turned out to be shingles, or herpes zoster, was hardly noticeable.
Views Show How North Korea Policy Spread Misery
by Sharon La Franiere
New York Times

YANJI, China — Like many North Koreans, the construction worker lived in penury. His state employer had not paid him for so long that he had forgotten his salary. Indeed, he paid his boss to be listed as a dummy worker so that he could leave his work site. Then he and his wife could scrape out a living selling small bags of detergent on the black market.
Simple, steady is way to win
Sometimes what isn't in a story is as revealing as what is.
By Danny Westneat
Seattle Times
U.S. scientists design smart underpants that could save lives
by Rob Muir

(Reuters Life!) - A team of U.S. scientists has designed some new men's briefs that may be comfortable, durable and even stylish but, unlike most underpants, may be able to save lives.
In Sweden, the Men Can Have It All
by Katrin Benhold
New York Times

SPOLAND, SWEDEN — Mikael Karlsson owns a snowmobile, two hunting dogs and five guns. In his spare time, this soldier-turned-game warden shoots moose and trades potty-training tips with other fathers. Cradling 2-month-old Siri in his arms, he can’t imagine not taking baby leave. “Everyone does.”

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

In New Space Race, Enter the Entrepreneurs
by Kenneth Chang
New York Times

NORTH LAS VEGAS, Nev. — At the Bigelow Aerospace factory here, the full-size space station mockups sitting on the warehouse floor look somewhat like puffy white watermelons. The interiors offer a hint of what spacious living in space might look like.
Here's What A Card Skimmer Looks Like On An ATM
Deepwater Horizon Response
The Official Site of the Deepwater Horizon Unified Command
Correct Method of Folding the United States Flag
U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Guidelines for Display of the Flag
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (U.S.V.A.)
Joint Committee on Printing
United States Congress

Monday, June 7, 2010

Test Your Focus

Test How Fast you Juggle Tasks
The number of long-term unemployed workers continues to swell
Long-term unemployed workers now make up nearly half of all unemployed workers.
By SoldAtTheTop, Guest blogger / June 7, 2010
Christian Science Monitor

Worse off possibly than the other metrics tracking the long term unemployed might be the growing portion of workers now unemployed 27 weeks and over.
What Lies Beneath: Holes Full of Fire, Water, Darkness
by Andrew C. Revkin
New York Times

This is a brief followup look at holes, building out of coverage here of the extraordinary orifice that swallowed a building and street corner in Guatemala City after the region was struck by a raging tropical downpour. (Interestingly, an American geologist living in that city has concluded that this hole, and another that formed there in 2007, are not technically sinkholes at all, but the result of stormwater drainage eroding the loosely packed pumice, laid down in past volcanic activity, that underlies the region.)
Tips for Searching for Complaints Online
By Jennifer Saranow Schultz
New York Times

Consumers should start their search for complaints about a company online at, according to a report released on Monday by the Consumer Federation of America.
Glo: Interactive Digital Bible
Why you should take the time to master a single skill
By going deep into one subject, we learn how to learn – a priceless ability.
By Ranjani Iyer Mohanty
Christian Science Monitor

For most of us who never became concert pianists or even made it to mediocre, what was the point of learning to play the piano as a child? The boring scales, the silly little tunes, the hours of practice until we finally learned a song anyone recognized?
Hooked on Gadgets, and Paying a Mental Price
by Matt Richtel
New York Times

SAN FRANCISCO — When one of the most important e-mail messages of his life landed in his in-box a few years ago, Kord Campbell overlooked it.
White hair a "healing sign" with melanoma drugs

(Reuters) - When your hair turns white it is usually a sign of old age, but in advanced melanoma patients taking a new type of cancer treatment, it may be a very good sign, researchers said on Saturday.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Xtreme Eating 2010
by Jayne Hurley & Bonnie Liebman, June 2010
Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI)

With two out of three adults—and one out of three children—overweight or obese, you’d think that restaurants would have some interest in keeping their patrons alive and dining out longer.