Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Upsy Daisy

Indian army personnel use a bulldozer to help save a wild elephant cub that got trapped in a water reservoir tank on Tuesday. The rescue mission occurred some 15 miles from the city of Siliguri.


'Nah mum, I think they're animals, I think humans are animals'

"Standing in front of enclosure 99 at Edinburgh Zoo, we looked in as the animals were stretching and bending together, moving rhythmically about the space. In one corner, a pair patted and poked each other as if testing what they could get away with. They seemed to be playing.

The animals we stared at through the perspex of the enclosure were apes, but not the kind you would usually expect to find at the zoo. These were the human variety.

The humans in question are part of a dance troupe led by choreographer Janis Claxton. As part of Scottish dance organisation Dance Base's program at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, the troupe of men and women from Europe, Australia and China were performing a piece called Enclosure 99 Humans. The performance, which debuted at the Fringe festival in 2008 and runs seven hours a day for two weeks no matter the weather, was born of Claxton's fascination with the movements of animals. Her curiosity about ape movement in particular prompted her to study ape gestural communication with primatologist Klaus Zuberb├╝hler of St Andrews University. In Enclosure 99, her troupe's movements and scenarios are inspired by apes they have observed at zoos around the world."
CultureLab/continue reading


Philosoraptor - if reddit is a link sharing site...


Obvious Chemistry...




Lolcats 'n' Funny Pictures of Cats

How To Wash a Toilet

 "This was simply too much of a time saver not to share it with you:

1. Put both lids of the toilet up and add 1/8 cup of pet shampoo to the water in the bowl.

2. Pick up the cat and soothe him while you carry him towards the bathroom.

3. In one smooth movement, put the cat in the toilet and close the lid. You may need to stand on the lid.

4. The cat will self agitate and make ample suds. Never mind the noises that come from the toilet, the cat is actually enjoying this.

5. Flush the toilet three or four times. This provides a 'power-wash' and rinse'.

6. Have someone open the front door of your home. Be sure that there are no people between the bathroom and the front door.

7. Stand behind the toilet as far as you can, and quickly lift the lid.

8. The cat will rocket out of the toilet, streak through the bathroom, and run outside where he will dry himself off.

9. Both the commode and the cat will be sparkling clean."


Size Matters to Skinks

"Size matters when skink lizards are trying to mate.

After observing hundreds of failed attempts at inter-species lizard love in his laboratory, Jonathan Richardson, a U.S. Geological Survey researcher, realized it may be the size of the skinks that keeps different species from interbreeding.

To successfully mate, the male skink must corkscrew his body around the female and align their genitals. If the alignment is off, so is the courtship.

Different species of Plestidon skink are native to the same parts of Western North America, but are different sizes. So when the different species try to mate, the important parts don't line up.

"As size diverges, the corkscrew fails," Richmond said in a press release. "In this case, it just happens that this is about the only thing necessary to get the ball rolling for speciation."

To test the effect of size on skink mating, Richardson developed a computer simulation of skinks in the throes of reptile romance.

His model backed up his observations that different size skinks could rarely achieve the genital alignment necessary for successful mating.

Since the skinks often occupy the same habitats in the wild, size may be the deciding factor in keeping the different species of skinks in P. skiltonianus group separate.

The research was published in American Naturalist."

Analysis by Tim Wall / Discovery News


Musical instrument for kids


Milky Way forms in fine detail

"This epic time-lapse shows the Milky Way forming and evolving over 13.7 billion years .
 Developed by a team led by Piero Madau from the University of California in Santa Cruz and Javiera Guedes from the Institute of Theoretical Physics in Zurich, it's the most detailed simulation of a galaxy's evolution yet made."
 New Scientist TV

Oh my God! It's South Park's Eric Cartman.

The Post-it wars – in pictures | Art and design | The Guardian


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Carrot by Slavenka


Egypt’s Looking Green This Time of Year



Falser Words Were Never Spoken

"Gandhi’s words have been tweaked a little too in recent years. Perhaps you’ve noticed a bumper sticker that purports to quote him: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” When you first come across it, this does sound like something Gandhi would have said. But when you think about it a little, it starts to sound more like ... a bumper sticker. Displayed brightly on the back of a Prius, it suggests that your responsibilities begin and end with your own behavior. It’s apolitical, and a little smug. Sure enough, it turns out there is no reliable documentary evidence for the quotation. The closest verifiable remark we have from Gandhi is this: “If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. ... We need not wait to see what others do.”"
  By Brian Morton- reading


You want me

 Lolcats 'n' Funny Pictures of Cats 

Shaken, not stirred


Need a boost ?

Cyanide & Happiness #2533 -


Manchester United's 8-2 rout of Arsenal

'...And when Manchester United scored their eighth goal, what did you do then, sir?'


They just can't stay out of the woods

No wonder the cute creatures are endangered, they just can't stay out of the woods /more

Lost penguin goes home

The penguin was moved from the Wellington Zoo, where staff have cared for him for the past two months to the research ship Tangaroa, which will release him after four days at sea at a latitude of 51 degrees south.
Happy Feet has been placed in a custom-made crate for the journey. He will be kept cool with 60 buckets of ice and fed fish.
The Tangaroa is New Zealand's largest research vessel and was already scheduled to head into frigid southern waters to check on fish numbers in order to set fishing quotas.
The 3-foot-tall penguin was found on a New Zealand beach on June 20, far from his Antarctic feeding grounds. He was moved to the zoo after he became ill from eating sand that he likely mistook for snow. He's since regained weight and been cleared to be returned to the wild.
read more


Search For Gaddafi



Go on, try to convince yourself, because realism can be bad for your health.

""Everything's going to be fine." Go on, try to convince yourself, because realism can be bad for your health. Optimists recover better from medical procedures such as coronary bypass surgery, have healthier immune systems and live longer, both in general and when suffering from conditions such as cancer, heart disease and kidney failure (Annals of Behavioral Medicine, vol 39, p 4).

It is well accepted that negative thoughts and anxiety can make us ill. Stress - the belief that we are at risk - triggers physiological pathways such as the "fight-or-flight" response, mediated by the sympathetic nervous system. These have evolved to protect us from danger, but if switched on long-term they increase the risk of conditions such as diabetes and dementia.

What researchers are now realising is that positive beliefs don't just work by quelling stress. They have a positive effect too - feeling safe and secure, or believing things will turn out fine, seems to help the body maintain and repair itself."
New Scientist/continue reading


Monday, August 29, 2011

Breaking News

Lolcats 'n' Funny Pictures of Cats 


Rick Perry and religion: Does the Texas governor believe his idiotic God talk, or is he just pandering for votes?

"After a protracted arid interval, the state's immodest governor, Rick Perry, announced that he was using the authority vested in him to call for prayers for rain. These incantations and beseechments, carrying the imprimatur of government, were duly offered to the heavens. The heavens responded by remaining, along with the parched lands below, obstinately dry.
Perry did not, of course, suffer politically for making an idiot of himself in this way. Not even the true believers really expect that prayers for precipitation will be answered, or believe that a failed rainmaker is a false prophet. And, had Perry's entreaties actually been followed by a moistening of the clouds and the coming of the healing showers, it is unlikely that anybody would really have claimed a connection between post hoc and propter hoc. No, religion in politics is more like an insurance policy than a true act of faith. Professing allegiance to it seldom does you any harm, at least in Republican primary season, and can do you some good. It's a question of prudence.
Or is it? "
By Christopher Hitchens - Slate Magazine/continue reading

Little and large

George, who is 13 weeks old was adopted in June after he was rescued by the RSPCA.and soon won the affection of his owner's three-year-old Great Dane, Shadow.


Republicans Against Science

"Mr. Perry, the governor of Texas, recently made headlines by dismissing evolution as “just a theory,” one that has “got some gaps in it” — an observation that will come as news to the vast majority of biologists. But what really got peoples’ attention was what he said about climate change: “I think there are a substantial number of scientists who have manipulated data so that they will have dollars rolling into their projects. And I think we are seeing almost weekly, or even daily, scientists are coming forward and questioning the original idea that man-made global warming is what is causing the climate to change.”

That’s a remarkable statement — or maybe the right adjective is “vile.”

The second part of Mr. Perry’s statement is, as it happens, just false: the scientific consensus about man-made global warming — which includes 97 percent to 98 percent of researchers in the field, according to the National Academy of Sciences — is getting stronger, not weaker, as the evidence for climate change just keeps mounting.

In fact, if you follow climate science at all you know that the main development over the past few years has been growing concern that projections of future climate are underestimating the likely amount of warming. Warnings that we may face civilization-threatening temperature change by the end of the century, once considered outlandish, are now coming out of mainstream research groups.

But never mind that, Mr. Perry suggests; those scientists are just in it for the money, “manipulating data” to create a fake threat. In his book “Fed Up,” he dismissed climate science as a “contrived phony mess that is falling apart.”

I could point out that Mr. Perry is buying into a truly crazy conspiracy theory, which asserts that thousands of scientists all around the world are on the take, with not one willing to break the code of silence. I could also point out that multiple investigations into charges of intellectual malpractice on the part of climate scientists have ended up exonerating the accused researchers of all accusations. But never mind: Mr. Perry and those who think like him know what they want to believe, and their response to anyone who contradicts them is to start a witch hunt."
By Paul Krugman - reading


Behind Every Woman...

Boring Meeting