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Old 06-10-2008, 04:14 PM   #26
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http://www.independent.co.uk/environ...pe-760431.html

Wind-fuelled 'supergrid' offers clean power to Europe

5,000-mile network could cut entire continent's carbon output by a quarter
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:17 PM   #27
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http://www.naturalnews.com/023388.html

U.S. Government Sought Customer Book Purchasing Records from Amazon.com
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:23 PM   #28
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http://www.tristateobserver.com/modu...icle&sid=10121

WASHINGTON - Larry Matlack, President of the American Agriculture Movement (AAM), has raised concerns over the issue of U.S. grain reserves after it was announced that the sale of 18.37 million bushels of wheat from USDA’s Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) Bill Emerson Humanitarian Trust.
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Old 06-10-2008, 05:44 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by amesj523 View Post
Not yet. But I do have some science articles in the pipeline to post, as well as some other things.

The main forum sucks, it would get buried under other ****. I could have put it in the OT forum, but -eh. Seems most people can find me here...i guess that's why it's here.
This belongs in a dangerous seedy neighborhood where gun play is common not among the wonderful suburbanites debating which tampon to use. Keep it here for the ambiance and .50 beer night.
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Old 06-11-2008, 08:49 AM   #30
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hahaha! :salute!:
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Old 06-11-2008, 10:41 AM   #31
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Light fantastic: pedestrians to generate power

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/new...cle4087518.ece

THE power of the wind and the tide have been harnessed – now the footfall of trudging shoppers is to become the latest source of emission-free energy.

Underfloor generators, powered by “heel strike” and designed by British engineers, may soon be installed in supermarkets and railway stations.

The technology could use the footsteps of pedestrians to power thousands of lightbulbs at shopping centres. It works by using the pressure of feet on the floor to compress pads underneath, driving fluid through mini-turbines that then generate electricity, which is stored in a battery.

Engineers who have modelled the effects of the technology at Victoria Underground station in central London have calculated that the 34,000 travellers passing through every hour could power 6,500 lightbulbs.

David Webb, a structural engineer at the consultant Scott Wilson, which is in discussions with Network Rail and with retail firms to install the devices, said: “It’s just picking up on the fact that all structures move a bit. This technology says, okay, we can do something useful with that energy.”

In addition to floors, the technology could also be installed beneath railway lines and on road bridges to exploit the energy of passing trains and vehicles.
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Old 06-11-2008, 01:35 PM   #32
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http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/10/sc...in&oref=slogin

Yet scientists have found evidence that the sea rocket is able to do something that no other plant has ever been shown to do.

The sea rocket, researchers report, can distinguish between plants that are related to it and those that are not. And not only does this plant recognize its kin, but it also gives them preferential treatment.

If the sea rocket detects unrelated plants growing in the ground with it, the plant aggressively sprouts nutrient-grabbing roots. But if it detects family, it politely restrains itself.
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Old 06-11-2008, 01:38 PM   #33
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Testing “spooky action-at-a-distance” on the International Space Station


Entanglement is the strange and beautiful property of certain quantum particles to become so deeply linked that they share the same existence. According to quantum theory, that link should be maintained whatever the distance between the particles, whether the width of an atom or the diameter of the universe.

This led Einstein to claim that the instantaneous effects of entanglement would lead to “spooky action-at-a-distance” in violation of special relativity which prevents faster-than-light signals.

Nobody knows how the different predictions of relativity and quantum mechanics can be resolved. However, entanglement has been measured in numerous experiments over relatively short distances on Earth. The tests involve two entangled particles, photons say, being sent to distant experimenters who then perform measurements on them.

In every one of these tests, the results agree entirely with the predictions of quantum mechanics. And yet naysayers continue to unearth loopholes that allow them to claim that there is a way in which the results are fixed, perhaps because quantum mechanics works only only over the short distances that can be exploited on Earth or by the existence some kind of hidden variable that determines in advance how the particles will behave when they are separated.

There is one way to settle the matter for sure: send entangled photons to two orbiting astronauts on board different spacecraft with large relative velocities. That leaves no room for hidden variable theories or any other fix because the peculiarities of special relativity allow both astronauts to claim the measurement on their photon was performed before the other.

Today Anton Zeilinger from the University of Vienna in Austria, says he wants to try just such an experiment and has put together an impressive international team to design and promote idea. The team has submitted its proposal, called Space-QUEST, to the European Space Agency in the hope that one end of the experiment could hosted on the Columbus module, Europe’s orbiting laboratory attached to the International Space Station.

The other observer need only be on the ground since Zeilinger has already proven that single photons can be bounced off orbiting satellites and detected on the ground.

That should please mission planners for the International Space Station which has yet to host a single significant experiment in space. Zeilinger’s Space-QUEST experiment looks like a genuine attempt to push the envelope of physics. The quicker they get it into orbit, the better.
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Old 06-11-2008, 01:40 PM   #34
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http://nymag.com/restaurants/features/breakfast/47395/

The Coffee Junkie’s Guide to Caffeine Addiction
We’re hooked like never before. Is that bad?
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Old 06-11-2008, 01:51 PM   #35
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Anticipating the Future to ‘See’ the Present

staring at a pattern meant to evoke an optical illusion is usually an act of idle curiosity, akin to palm reading or astrology. The dot disappears, or it doesn’t. The silhouette of the dancer spins clockwise or counterclockwise. The three-dimensional face materializes or not, and the explanation always seems to have something to do with the eye or creativity or even personality.

That’s the usual cue to nod and feign renewed absorption in the pattern.

In fact, scientists have investigated such illusions for hundreds of years, looking for clues to how the brain constructs a seamless whole from the bouncing kaleidoscope of light coming through the eyes. Brain researchers today call the illusions perceptual, not optical, because the entire visual system is involved, and their theories about what is occurring can sound as exotic as anyone’s.

In the current issue of the journal Cognitive Science, researchers at the California Institute of Technology and the University of Sussex argue that the brain’s adaptive ability to see into the near future creates many common illusions.

“It takes time for the brain to process visual information, so it has to anticipate the future to perceive the present,” said Mark Changizi, the lead author of the paper, who is now at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. “One common functional mechanism can explain many of these seemingly unrelated illusions.” His co-authors were Andrew Hsieh, Romi Nijhawan, Ryota Kanai and Shinsuke Shimojo.

One fundamental debate in visual research is whether the brain uses a bag of ad hoc tricks to build a streaming model of the world, or a general principle, like filling in disjointed images based on inference from new evidence and past experience. The answer may be both. But perceptual illusions provide a keyhole to glimpse the system.

When shown two images in quick succession, one of a dot on the left of a screen and one with the dot on the right, the brain sees motion from left to right, even though there was none. The visual system has apparently constructed the scenario after it has been perceived, reconciling the jagged images by imputing motion.
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Old 06-11-2008, 03:08 PM   #36
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http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=15090



A BBC investigation estimates that around $23bn (11.75bn) may have been lost, stolen or just not properly accounted for in Iraq.

For the first time, the extent to which some private contractors have profited from the conflict and rebuilding has been researched by the BBC's Panorama using US and Iraqi government sources.

A US gagging order is preventing discussion of the allegations.

The order applies to 70 court cases against some of the top US companies.
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Old 06-11-2008, 03:22 PM   #37
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http://cryptogon.com/?p=2722

If a car that gets 100 miles per gallon of gasoline sounds like a driver’s futile fantasy, think again.

Scientists at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden are testing a spruced-up Toyota Prius, a plug-in hybrid sedan complete with a solar panel attached to its oval roof and a bigger battery in the trunk to supply power in lieu of the gasoline-fueled engine.

The result: A spunky Prius that runs the initial 60 miles mostly on battery, adding up to a fuel mileage of 100 miles per gallon.

“The stored power in the battery does a great job of displacing petroleum,” said Tony Markel, a senior engineer at NREL who has been working on the 2006 model Prius for the past two years. “For most people, their daily commute is about 30 miles, so this car would run virtually on battery and only need to be recharged at night.”
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Old 06-11-2008, 03:42 PM   #38
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http://cryptogon.com/?p=2723

EMERGENCY: MULTIPLE FACTORS POINTING TO LOWER CROP YIELDS
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Old 06-12-2008, 10:22 AM   #40
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Old 06-12-2008, 10:24 AM   #41
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Would an antimatter apple fall up?

New experiments are being proposed to test a big unknown in physics: how antimatter reacts to gravity.

Physicists have studied antimatter, the mirror version of ordinary matter, for decades. They know, for example, that antiparticles have the same mass as ordinary particles, but opposite charge. But no one knows what effect gravity will have on such particles.

Now several groups want to measure exactly how the Earth will pull on antimatter. The tests would create a horizontal beam of the stuff and measure how much gravity deflects it.

The complicated ballistic test may show no difference between the way matter and antimatter fall. But some experimentalists are holding out hope that they may see something completely unexpected, which could point the way to new gravity-like forces, or perhaps even antigravity.

"If antimatter fell down faster, it would mean the discovery of at least one new force, probably two. If it fell up, it would mean our understanding of general relativity is incorrect," says Thomas Phillips, a physicist at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, US.
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Old 06-12-2008, 10:26 AM   #42
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http://www.boston.com/business/techn...test_computer/

WASHINGTON—Scientists unveiled the world's fastest supercomputer on Monday, a $100 million machine that for the first time has performed 1,000 trillion calculations per second in a sustained exercise.
more stories like this

The technology breakthrough was accomplished by engineers from the Los Alamos National Laboratory and IBM Corp. on a computer to be used primarily on nuclear weapons work, including simulating nuclear explosions.

The computer, named Roadrunner, is twice as fast as IBM's Blue Gene system at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, which itself is three times faster than any of the world's other supercomputers, according to IBM.

"The computer is a speed demon. It will allow us to solve tremendous problems," said Thomas D'Agostino, head of the National Nuclear Security Administration, which oversees nuclear weapons research and maintains the warhead stockpile.

But officials said the computer also could have a wide range of other applications in civilian engineering, medicine and science, from developing biofuels and designing more fuel-efficient cars to finding drug therapies and providing services to the financial industry.

To put the computer's speed in perspective, it has roughly the computing power of 100,000 of today's most powerful laptops stacked 1.5 miles high, according to IBM. Or, if each of the world's 6 billion people worked on hand-held computers for 24 hours a day, it would take them 46 years to do what the Roadrunner computer can do in a single day.
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Old 06-12-2008, 10:28 AM   #43
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http://blog.wired.com/cars/2008/06/bmw-builds-a-ca.html

Concept cars give automotive designers a chance to let their imaginations run wild, often with outlandish results. But even by that measure, BMW has come up with something as strange as it is innovative -- a shape-shifting car covered with fabric.

Instead of steel, aluminum or even carbon fiber, the GINA Light Visionary Model has a body of seamless fabric stretched over a movable metal frame that allows the driver to change its shape at will. The car -- which actually runs and drives -- is a styling design headed straight for the BMW Museum in Munich and so it will never see production, but building a practical car wasn't the point.

Chris Bangle, head of design for BMW, says GINA allowed his team to "challenge existing principles and conventional processes."

"It is in the nature of such visions that they do not necessarily claim to be suitable for series production," company officials said in unveiling the car Tuesday. "Rather, they are intended to steer creativity and research into new directions."

Giving Bangle and his team that latitude to design so radical a car "helps to tap into formerly inconceivable, innovative potential" to push the boundaries of appearance and materials as well as functions and the manufacturing process, BMW says.

Bangle and is team actually built GINA -- which stands for "Geometry and functions In 'N' Adaptions" -- six years ago, but BMW kept it under, er, wraps until Tuesday. It's built on the Z8 chassis and has a 4.4-liter V8 and six-speed automatic transmission. BMW says the fabric skin - polyurethane-coated Lycra - is resilient, durable and water resistant. It's stretched over an aluminum frame controlled by electric and hydraulic actuators that allow the owner to change the body shape. Want a big spoiler on the back? Wider fenders? No problem. "The drastic reinterpretation of familiar functionality and structure means that drivers have a completely new experience when they handle their car," BMW says.

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Old 06-12-2008, 11:13 AM   #44
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http://online.wsj.com/article/SB121305642257659301.html

Why Is Bush Helping Saudi Arabia Build Nukes?
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Old 06-12-2008, 11:29 AM   #45
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http://www.technoccult.com/archives/...t-in-tanzania/

Albinos, Long Shunned, Face Threat in Tanzania

Discrimination against albinos is a serious problem throughout sub-Saharan Africa, but recently in Tanzania it has taken a wicked twist: at least 19 albinos, including children, have been killed and mutilated in the past year, victims of what Tanzanian officials say is a growing criminal trade in albino body parts.

Many people in Tanzania — and across Africa, for that matter — believe albinos have magical powers. They stand out, often the lone white face in a black crowd, a result of a genetic condition that impairs normal skin pigmentation and strikes about 1 in 3,000 people here. Tanzanian officials say witch doctors are now marketing albino skin, bones and hair as ingredients in potions that are promised to make people rich.
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Old 06-12-2008, 11:35 AM   #46
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http://news.cnet.com/8301-13739_3-9962760-46.html

Your papers please: TSA bans ID-less flight
Posted by Chris Soghoian 30 comments

In a major change of policy, the Transportation Security Administration has announced that passengers refusing to show ID will no longer be able to fly. The policy change, announced on Thursday afternoon, will go into force on June 21, and will only affect passengers who refuse to produce ID. Passengers who claim to have lost or forgotten their proof of identity will still be able to fly.
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Old 06-12-2008, 11:38 AM   #47
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This past September, the secretive mercenary company Blackwater USA found its name splashed across front pages throughout the world after the company's shooters gunned down seventeen Iraqi civilians in Baghdad's Nisour Square. But by early 2008, Blackwater had largely receded from the headlines save for the occasional blip on the media radar sparked by Congressman Henry Waxman's ongoing investigations into its activities. Its forces remained deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and business continued to pour in. In the two weeks directly following Nisour Square, Blackwater signed more than $144 million in contracts with the State Department for "protective services" in Iraq and Afghanistan alone and, over the following weeks and months, won millions more in contracts with other federal entities like the Coast Guard, the Navy and the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center.



Blackwater's Iraq contract was extended in April, but the company is by no means betting the house on its long-term presence there. While the firm is quietly maintaining its Iraq work, it is aggressively pursuing other business opportunities. In September it was revealed that Blackwater had been "tapped" by the Pentagon's Counter Narcoterrorism Technology Program Office to compete for a share of a five-year, $15 billion budget "to fight terrorists with drug-trade ties." According to the Army Times, the contract "could include antidrug technologies and equipment, special vehicles and aircraft, communications, security training, pilot training, geographic information systems and in-field support." A spokesperson for another company bidding for the work said that "80 percent of the work will be overseas." As Richard Douglas, a deputy assistant secretary of defense, explained, "The fact is, we use Blackwater to do a lot of our training of counternarcotics police in Afghanistan. I have to say that Blackwater has done a very good job."

http://www.zcommunications.org/znet/viewArticle/17885
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Old 06-12-2008, 11:42 AM   #48
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http://esciencenews.com/articles/200...read.your.mind

A computer that can 'read' your mind


For centuries, the concept of mind readers was strictly the domain of folklore and science fiction. But according to new research published today in the journal Science, scientists are closer to knowing how specific thoughts activate our brains. The findings demonstrate the power of computational modeling to improve our understanding of how the brain processes information and thoughts. The research was conducted by a computer scientist, Tom Mitchell, and a cognitive neuroscientist, Marcel Just, both of Carnegie Mellon University. Their previous research, supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the W.M. Keck Foundation, had shown that functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) can detect and locate brain activity when a person thinks about a specific word. Using this data, the researchers developed a computational model that enabled a computer to correctly determine what word a research subject was thinking about by analyzing brain scan data.

In their most recent work, Just and Mitchell used fMRI data to develop a more sophisticated computational model that can predict the brain activation patterns associated with concrete nouns, or things that we experience through our senses, even if the computer did not already have the fMRI data for that specific noun.

The researchers first built a model that took the fMRI activation patterns for 60 concrete nouns broken down into 12 categories including animals, body parts, buildings, clothing, insects, vehicles and vegetables. The model also analyzed a text corpus, or a set of texts that contained more than a trillion words, noting how each noun was used in relation to a set of 25 verbs associated with sensory or motor functions. Combining the brain scan information with the analysis of the text corpus, the computer then predicted the brain activity pattern of thousands of other concrete nouns.
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Old 06-13-2008, 10:43 AM   #49
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http://www.smh.com.au/news/world/mas...765174174.html

Tokens of doom: mascots seen as signs of times



HONG KONG: Superstitious bloggers have linked China's earthquake disaster and other recent misfortunes to the five Olympic mascots, a Hong Kong newspaper reported yesterday.

Gossip sites are full of speculation that four of the five cartoon mascots have fulfilled prophesies of doom with one more, connected to the Yangtze River, still to come, the South China Morning Post said.

The five Olympic mascots are Jingjing, Huanhuan, Yingying, Nini and Beibei. Jingjing, a panda, is the animal most closely associated with Sichuan province where the earthquake struck.

Huanhuan, a cartoon character with flame-red hair, is being linked by bloggers to the Olympic torch that has been dogged by anti-China protests on its round-the-world tour.

Yingying, an antelope, is an animal confined to the borders of Tibet, which has been the scene of riots and the cause of international protests against China, the bloggers say.

Nini, represented by a kite, is being viewed as a reference to the "kite city" of Weifang, in Shandong, where there was a deadly train crash last month.

That leaves only Beibei, represented by a sturgeon fish, which online doomsayers suggest could indicate a looming disaster in the Yangtze River, the only place where sturgeon is found.

A Peking University sociologist, Xie Xueluan, told the newspaper: "Chinese see major calamities as divine intervention … The absence of religion reinforces this trend."

Other online prophets of doom say the recent disasters have come on days that are related to the normally lucky Chinese number eight. The Tibet riots (14/3) and the earthquake (12/5) happened on a date whose digits add up to eight.

This bodes ill for the opening day of the Beijing Olympics - August 8, 2008 - which was chosen for its auspicious abundance of China's lucky number.

Deutsche Presse-Agentur
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Old 06-16-2008, 09:45 AM   #50
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http://www.physorg.com/news132577096.html

Scientists confirm that parts of earliest genetic material may have come from the stars

The finding suggests that parts of the raw materials to make the first molecules of DNA and RNA may have come from the stars.

The scientists, from Europe and the USA, say that their research, published in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters, provides evidence that life's raw materials came from sources beyond the Earth.

The materials they have found include the molecules uracil and xanthine, which are precursors to the molecules that make up DNA and RNA, and are known as nucleobases.

The team discovered the molecules in rock fragments of the Murchison meteorite, which crashed in Australia in 1969.

They tested the meteorite material to determine whether the molecules came from the solar system or were a result of contamination when the meteorite landed on Earth.
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