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Saturday, July 27, 2013

1920's - What The Future Will Look Like

via Everlasting Blort

142 larvae were manually extracted, aided by the application of raw bacon which served as an attractant

Read the whole thing at Discover.

“During her hospital stay, a total of 142 larvae were manually extracted, aided by the application of raw bacon which served as an attractant and petroleum jelly occlusion.”

You might be surprised to know that finding interesting articles on infections and infestations is a thankless and occasionally banal job. It is rare, as you find yourself trawling through the dusty and dense annals of Pubmed and Jstor, that you stumble upon a really good paper, the true gold twinkling among the pyrite of multisyllabic articles on viral proteomics, immunology and dull epidemiological trends in diseases. When you discover a treasure that renders you mute, like the one I recently discovered on a screwworm infestation that was wrangled by physicians with processed pork products, it’s like chancing upon a chupacabra in your backyard. The sight is both rare and awful, but also mesmerizing to behold. 

Friday, July 26, 2013

Former IMF chief Strauss'Kahn charged with pimping

LA Times: Strauss-Kahn, 64, a former Paris finance minister, has admitted through his lawyers attending “libertine” parties at hotels in France and in Washington, where the International Monetary Fund is based, in 2010 and 2011.

However, he has always insisted he did not know that some of the women present were prostitutes and denies the pimping charge.

After the investigation into what has been dubbed the Carlton Affair was launched in October 2011, Strauss-Kahn's lawyer, Henri Leclerc, told French television it was reasonable to assume his client did not know that a number of women at the parties were being paid for sex.

As you can imagine, at these kinds of parties you're not always dressed, and I challenge you to distinguish a naked prostitute from any other naked woman,” Leclerc said.

Strauss-Kahn, a former presidential hopeful, has been pursued by claims of sexual offenses since his arrest by New York police in May 2011, following accusations that he tried to rape hotel maid Nafissatou Diallo.

The criminal charges were eventually dropped after doubts emerged about the maid's credibility. But Strauss-Kahn, who insisted Diallo had consented to oral sex, was forced to pay her substantial damages, reportedly in the region of $6 million.

The French state prosecutor had recommended dropping the Carlton Affair charges against Strauss-Kahn on grounds of a lack of evidence. The French magistrates overseeing the investigation rejected the recommendation and maintained a charge of “aggravated pimping as part of a group.” In France, the offense of “pimping” covers a wide range of crimes includes aiding or encouraging prostitution.

Man Attempts To Rob Gun Store With Bat

HILLSBORO, Ore. (AP) — The Washington County sheriff’s office says a man who attempted to rob a Beaverton gun store with a baseball bat and a knife was thwarted when the manager drew his own gun.

Friday links

The Evolution of Wolverine: From 1974 to 2013.  And here's a Supercut of Wolverine’s Claws Coming Out.

10 Weirdest Mythological Creatures In the World.

AK-47 being shot underwater, in slow motion, with bonus science lesson.

Gallery of Sinkholes.

No, but seriously. If sharknadoes were real, where would they strike?

Supercut Compilation of Wolverine’s Claws Coming Out

AK-47 being shot underwater, in slow motion, with bonus science lesson

via GMSV.

Students Sign Petition to Legalize 4th Trimester Abortion

via MRC.

Vibrating bicycle seat cover provides exciting new incentive to cycle to work

Daily Mail: We are always being told to incorporate more exercise into our daily routines - and cycling to work is an excellent way of doing so.

And if you were reluctant to hit the pedals before, a new gizmo could provide all the incentive you need to get on your bike.

A firm has launched the Happy Ride - a vibrating seat cover that will make journeys by bicycle that bit more exciting.

The inconspicuous gadget slips over the seat of a bike and incorporates 'vibration stimulation’ as you ride.

The vibration can be turned on and off using the control pad which then tucks into a pocket in the seat cover allowing you to peddle away uninhibited.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Why Constitutional Protections Won’t Mean Diddly for Detroit’s Labor Unions in Bankruptcy

A federal judge yesterday threw out multiple union lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of Detroit’s bankruptcy filing and declared his courtroom the exclusive venue for future proceedings. This is a setback for the unions’ legal argument that the filing violates the state constitution in not holding their pension benefits harmless. It is also a strategic setback because they no longer have the option for shopping around for friendly judges who they have helped elect to state courts.

Via Reason, which links to a longer article in Bloomberg.

19 year old "undocumented immigrant" rapes and beats to death 93 year old woman

OMAHA, Neb. —A 19-year-old accused of beating and raping an elderly woman who later died will now face a murder charge.

Prosecutors said Sergio Martinez-Perez beat and sexually assaulted 93-year-old Louise Sollowin in her home Sunday. Sollowin died Wednesday.

-- Video: Family reacts to assault

Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine on Thursday said Martinez-Perez will be charged with first-degree murder.

Autopsy results showed that Sollowin's cause of death was blunt force trauma.

Martinez-Perez, who already faces charges of first-degree sexual assault, first-degree assault and burglary, is set to appear before a judge Friday to be arraigned on the new charge.

Investigators said Martinez-Perez is not a legal resident of the United States, and that his country of origin is not yet clear.

Warning to tourists in France after attack by feral cats

I assume the feral cats are either German or "youths".

About six cats pounced on the unnamed dog owner as she walked her poodle in the city of Belfort, in the popular Franche-Comte region, on the Swiss border, dragging her to the ground and mauling her.

She was bitten repeatedly and left with a torn artery which could have proved fatal, while the dog was also badly hurt.

The dog was, of course, a poodle.

George H.W. Bush shaves head in solidarity for young cancer patient

KENNEBUNKPORT, MAINE — President George H. W. Bush this week joined members of his Secret Service detail in shaving his head to show his support for the two year-old son of a detail member who is being treated for leukemia and started losing his hair.

The 89 year-old commander-in-chief took the unusual step earlier this week after learning, and seeing, that many members of his security detail had already gone under the razor to show their support for young Patrick.

BPD members have also launched a website to assist with Patrick’s medical bills.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wired: How Protecting Your Privacy Could Make You the Bad Guy

Read the whole thing.

There’s a funny catch-22 when it comes to privacy best practices. The very techniques that experts recommend to protect your privacy from government and commercial tracking could be at odds with the antiquated, vague Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA).

A number of researchers (including me) recently joined an amicus brief (filed by Stanford’s Center for Internet and Society in the “Weev” case), arguing how security and privacy researchers are put at risk by this law.

However, I’d also like to make the case here that the CFAA is bad privacy policy for consumers, too. It’s not just something that affects hackers and academics.

The crux of a CFAA violation hinges on whether or not an action allows a user to gain “access without authorization” or “exceed authorized access” to a computer. The scary part, therefore, is when these actions involve everyday behaviors like clearing cookies, changing browser reporting, using VPNs, and even protecting one’s mobile phone from being identified.

At Least 56 Die in Train Derailment in Northwestern Spain

The accident appeared to be caused by excessive speed.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

HD Footage Of Plants And Insects Magnified Thousands Of Times

via Presurfer.

Japan Finally Admits Fukushima Radiation Leaking into the Pacific

After two years of publicly denying the obvious, the General Manager of TEPCO, the company which owns and operates the stricken Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan, has admitted radiation has contaminated surrounding groundwater and is now leaking into the Pacific Ocean.

The announcement, by TEPCO GM Masayuki Ono, came in a press conference on Monday after reporters pushed for more open disclosure. Independent monitors in the area have recorded elevated levels of radioactive caesium, which have "increased by more than 100 times in just a few days."

Stock Market Behavior Predicted by Rat Neurons

Neatorama posts a 2005 article from The Annals of Improbable Research.

We here report for the first time, to the best of our knowledge, rat motor cortex neurons predicting the behavior of the American stock market. We implanted the motor cortex of the brains of rats with silicon electrodes. Using the correlation technique, we monitored the activity of neurons in our rats while simultaneously tracking the activity of stocks in the U.S. stock market.


We found that 74 stocks were responsive to the firing rates of our rats. Figure 2 shows an example of one stock (COKE, Coca-Cola Bottling Company Consolidated) that was positively correlated with the rat neurons. 

America's best educated kids don't go to school

Read the whole thing:

With public school students at the 50th percentile, home schoolers were at the 89th percentile in reading, the 86th percentile in science, the 84th percentile in language, math, and social studies.

Monday, July 22, 2013

MythBusters special takes on Breaking Bad myths

Per Entertainment Weekly, an upcoming episode of MythBusters (“MethBusters“) will test myths featured in the series Breaking Bad (including “whether you can really dissolve a body — and your tub and bathroom floor — with hydrofluoric acid”).

Here's the trailer.

Detroit Goes Up for Sale on eBay – Opening Bid $7.50

This is your chance to own a piece of America!

Known for producing some of America's finest automobiles like the Chevy Vega and Ford Pinto, Detroit was once home to a bustling industrial and manufacturing economy. 

All it needs now is a little TLC (and approximately 3 trillion dollars). In addition to owning a little slice of Michigan, your purchase of Detroit gets you:

  • An honorary Detroit Pistons championship ring from 2004
  • That cool Chrysler commercial with Eminem
  • A statue of Robocop that might get built 
  • The 1,297th ranked educational system in America 
  • Justin Verlander
  • Unlimited use of the phrase, "Detroit Muscle" 
  • The complete catalog of Motown Records albums including Diane Ross, Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye. You know, 'baby makin' music

There's more!

Buy within five days of this listing and get Flint, Michigan for FREE! A bonus worth more than $75!

Bid with confidence, folks. This one won't last long. 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Margarita. anyone? Here's a 380 horsepower blender powered by an old muscle car engine.

The invention, which runs on gasoline and requires a key to start, can blend about five gallons in one minute. Keene says his blender has been put to good use during summer parties, but says it's really just a regular appliance.

"You can make it alcoholic, non-alcoholic. You can use tequila, rum," says Keene. "Anything that you can make in a blender. We're still experimenting."

First trailer for The Hunger Game: Catching Fire just released