Wednesday, April 25, 2012

For god sakes, don't forget the Flåarb!

Source ->

Earlier Ikea link ->

Trailer for Ted

From Seth MacFarlane of  Family guy fame, here's the trailer of his new movie which looks funny as hell. Having Mila Kunis in it doesn't hurt either...

Video and link definitely NSFW (at the very least wear headphones)

Clickable link ->

 Description from Wikipedia (so you know that its 100% accurate): Mark Wahlberg plays John, a perfectly normal Boston native whose childhood wish for his teddy bear to come to life comes true. The bear Ted (voiced by MacFarlane himself) remains his best friend well into his adult years. Conflict emerges when Ted's irresponsible and vulgar slacker lifestyle comes in the way of John's attempt to embrace his adulthood and the woman of his dreams, Lori (Mila Kunis).

Audio demons are really hard to banish

You know what? I'm just going to post this in its entirety from the source.



Glorious Master Translator
Posted at: 2012-04-23 17:29:34
Original ad:
I need someone who speaks japanese to help me translate something. wont take too long. please email me ASAP!

From Me to ************@***********.org:

Hi! You need Japanese translate? I Chan, I help you with translate.

- Chan

From Scott ******* to Me:

hey chan. so ok heres the deal. my cd player suddenly stopped working and i cant figure out why. for some reason the only manual i have is entirely in japanese. i took a pic of the page im pretty sure its the trouble shooting part. can you see if it says anything about no sound coming from the output?

From Me to Scott *******:

Ok, I find three thing may help you:

"Failure of Sound from Device"
"Skipping of disc for poor sound"
"Sound volume low very much"

- Chan

From Scott ******* to Me:

umm..what does it say for the failure of sound one?

From Me to Scott *******:

"Hello and thank you for chose glorious master CD player! Apologies many for trouble of product. To fix failure of the sound, follow step:

1. Unplug glorious master CD player
2. Plug glorious master CD player back in"

I hope this help!

- Chan

From Scott ******* to Me:

that doesnt help me at all. is that all it says?

From Me to Scott *******:

Oh no! Very sorry. There more steps to help you! Here:

"If still experience failure of the sound, your glorious master CD player possessed by audio demon. To banish audio demon, follow step:

1. Ignite seven candle
2. Pray to Benzaiten, Goddess of Music
3. Benzaiten will banish audio demon to eternal suffering
4. Try play CD again

If you fail banishing of audio demon, you failure. Much dishonor of family name. Suggest immediate death by Seppuku."

I hope you banish audio demon! Much luck.

- Chan

From Scott ******* to Me:

wtf? does it really say that?

From Me to Scott *******:

I just translate what you give.

From Scott ******* to Me:

no way it says that. what kind of useless manual is this? how is that supposed to help anyone?

From Me to Scott *******:

Very sorry, audio demon big problem with many CD player! I have sword, much sharp, good for seppuku. You want borrow?

From Scott ******* to Me:

wtf are you talking about. an audio demon? this is BS. are you screwing with me?

From Scott ******* to Me:

did i send the wrong page? i think this is the table of contents. can you look at this and tell me which page is the troubleshooting one? then ill send you that one

From Me to Scott *******:

That no table of content, that Sushi take-out menu! Try #16, Spicy Salmon Roll! Much delicious!

From Scott ******* to Me:

..........ok buddy. thanks for nothing you jackass

Later, from another email account

From Me to *********@*********.org:

Hey there,

I saw your ad and think I can help you. I majored in Japanese in college, speak it fluently, and lived in Miyazaki for two years.


From Scott ******* to Me:

thanks so much mike. i was talking to someone else for help, but idk what his problem was. dude kept sending me all this BS. anyway my cd player isnt working and the manual is only in japanese so i need help reading the troubleshooting part. i think the attached picture is the table of contents, could you see if it says what page the troubleshooting part is on and then ill send you that?

From Me to Scott *******:

You sent me a sushi take-out menu. Are you sure you have the right documents?

From Scott ******* to Me:

wtf!!! i dont know what is going on! it has a picture of the cd player on the front and then this is the next page. why would they put a sushi menu in there?

From Me to Scott *******:

Japanese instruction manuals are not like the American manuals you are used to. They often include advertisements, and I guess in this case, a sushi menu. Looking at it closer, it says "Thank you for purchasing this glorious master CD player. Why not order sushi while you enjoy music?"


From Scott ******* to Me:

well that is dumb...whatever. i think this page is the troubleshooting part because of the tables. am i right? do you see anything about there not being any sound?

From Me to Scott *******:

Yes, this is the right page. It says to unplug it and plug it back in.


From Scott ******* to Me:

yea i did that. nothing. is that it?

From Me to Scott *******:

Well, you're not gonna want to hear this, but it says your CD player is possessed by Amanojaku, or "audio demon." You should light three candles and pray to Benzaiten, the god of music.


From Me to Scott *******:

Scott? Were you able to banish the audio demon?


Earlier Don't even Reply posts -> &

Monday, April 16, 2012

The Titanic was only #5!

The 10 deadliest maritime disasters to date... Why don't I just copy and paste the source article.

From Gizmodo:

13. MS Estonia

Source ->
Date: September 24, 1994
Location: Baltic Sea
Official death toll: 852

The MS Estonia was in choppy water when passengers began hearing loud metallic bangs, the sound of waves hitting the cargo doors. In a matter of minutes, they had separated, allowing water to pour into the lower deck, before the ships four engines cut out completely. Massive flooding kept those on the lower deck from making it out; only those on the upper deck were able to escape.

12. MV Bukoba

Date: May 21, 1996
Location: Lake Victoria, Tanzania
Official death toll: 894

The MV Bukoba was a passenger ferry known to disregard safety regulations. It had no life jackets, no life rings, no life vests, no proper firefighting gear; it forwent regular vessel and equipment inspections. The Bukoba began to sway, causing large kitchen equipment, dishes, pots and pans to crash to one side of the ship. The load bang sent the passengers into a panic, and when they rushed to the deck, the ship capsized. A former captain of the Kenyan Navy called its sinking "an accident waiting to happen."
Image via Times Live

11. HMT Royal Edward

Date: August 13, 1915
Location: 11km off Kandeliusa, Aegean Sea
Official death toll: 935

Royal Edward was a passenger ship, used to transport Commonwealth troops, mostly reinforcements for the British 29th infantry during the First World War. About 10am, the ship was hit by two German torpedos; it quickly sent out an SOS before losing power. She sank stern first in just six minutes. The ship had just finished conducting a boat drill and most of the men were still belowdecks, which account for the tragically high number of fatalities.
Image via Wdict

10. SS Hong Moh

Date: March 3, 1921
Location: South China Sea
Official death toll: 1,000

In 1921, the passenger steamer SS Hong Moh, traveling from Singapore to Amoy (China), went down after coming into contact with the White Rocks on Lamock Island, in the South China Sea. The ship broke in half; by the time the first rescue ship arrived, 3 days later, most of the passengers and crew had died.
Image via WreckSite

9. RMS Empress of Ireland

Date: May 29, 1914
Location: Saint Lawrence River, Pointe-au-Père, Quebec
Official death toll: 1,012

The Empress of Ireland a Canadian ocean liner, was traveling down the Saint Lawrence River in thick fog when she collided with a Norwegian collier. The collier didn't sink, but the Empress of Ireland listed rapidly. Water poured in through the portholes, quickly drowning those below deck. It remains the worst disaster in Canadian maritime history. Her wreck lies in a shallow 130ft of water, making it accessible divers, many of whom have retrieved relics from the vessel.

8. MS al-Salam Boccaccio 98

Date: February 3, 2006
Location: Red Sea
Official death toll: 1,018

The al-Salam Boccaccio left port, already listing, in poor weather condition, en route from Duba, Saudia Arabia, to Safaga in southern Egypt. A fire broke out in the engine room, which continued to burn for some time, as the crew used buckets of seawater to try to extinguish the flames. The fire was temporality put out; when it started again the captain tried to turn around to return to port, but the because the drainage pumps weren't working, water had collected in the hull, offsetting the balance and resulting in a capsize. Strong winds and poor weather complicated rescue efforts, leaving dozens of dead bodies floating in the Red Sea.
Image via Disboards

7. SS General Slocum

Date: June 15, 1904
Location: East River, NYC
Official death toll: 1,021

The SS General Slocum was a passenger steamboat built in Brooklyn, NY. She was carrying a members of St. Mark's Evangelical-Lutheran Church to a church picnic, traveling up the East River to the Long Island Sound, when a fire broke out in the Lamp Room. The flames grew rapidly, fuel by lamp oil, oil rags, a nearby paint locker, a cabin filled with gasoline. The ship's safety equipment was not maintained or checked; and when the crew attempted to put out the flames, the found a rotten fire hose the crumbled in their hands. The life jackets fell apart, too, and the lifeboats were inaccessible, wired in place. Ultimately, the passengers––many of whom, like most Americans at the time, did not know how to swim––jumped into the river and were weighed down by their heavy wool clothes.

6. RMS Lusitania

Source ->
Date: May 7, 1915
Location: Old Head of Kinsale, Ireland
Official death toll: 1,198

The Lusitania steamed out of New York, carrying a hidden cargo of munitions and contraband for the British war effort, as well as civilian passengers. She sank in a quick 18 minutes, after falling victim to a torpedo attack, which ignited the hull full of gunpowder, creating and argument on both sides of the war over whether a passenger ship could be considered a legitimate military target.

5. RMS Titanic

Date: April 14, 1912
Location: North Atlantic Ocean
Official death toll: 1,517

When she first set sail, the Titanic was the largest ship afloat. As we all know, she hit a giant iceberg and sank in the middle of the ocean, en route from Southampton, England, to New York City. 'Twas her first and her last voyage.

4. SS Sultana

Date: April 27, 1865
Location: In the Mississippi River, near Memphis, Tennessee.
Official death toll: 1,547

The SS Sultana was a Mississippi River steam-powered paddlewheeler that sank near Memphis, Tennessee after three of her four boilers exploded. Thought of as the greatest maritime disaster in US history, it got little attention at the time of its sinking, because the assassinations of President Abraham Lincoln and his own killer, John Wilkes Booth, and the end of the American Civil War, had all happened just days before.

3. MV Joola

Date: September 26, 2002
Location: Off the coast of Gambia
Official death toll: 1,863

The Joola, a Senegalese government-owned ferry designed to carry a maximum of 580 passengers, had at least 2,000 on board, when it capsized in rough waters during a dangerous storm in late 2002. It was down in under 5 minutes, passengers and luggage tossed into the sea.

2. SS Kiangya

Date: December 4, 1948
Location: the mouth of the Huangpu River, about 50 miles north of Shanghai.
Estimated death toll: 2,750–3,920

The Kiangya, a passenger steamship packed with refugees from the Chinese Civil War fleeing the advancing communist parties, blew up and sank after hitting what most believe was a mine leftover by the Japanese Imperial Navy. Several hours passed before rescue boats arrived.

1. MV Doña Paz

Source ->
Date: December 20, 1987
Location: Tablas Strait, Philippines
Official death toll: 1,565

Most of the passengers aboard the MV Doña Paz were asleep when the ship collided with the MT Vector, an oil tanker carrying 8,800 barrels of gasoline and petroleum. The collision ignited a fire abord the Vector that spread to the Doña Paz, leaving desperate passengers with no other choice than to jump into the the shark infested waters and swim among charred bodies. Estimates of casualties vary because of overloading and unmanifested passengers, and could be as high as 4,000, making this the deadliest peacetime shipping disaster, ever.

Source ->

Titanic posts: & & &

What ever happened to the iceberg?

Much has been posted/studied/written/read about the ship, but what about the iceberg that was in the wrong place at the wrong time?

From Wired via i09 (how's that for recognition gawker?):

The photos you see up top and down on the left right are quite possibly the only known photographic evidence of the actual iceberg that struck the Titanic. Understandably, nobody had bothered to snap any photographs while the ship was actually sinking, so it’s impossible to make an absolutely confirmed positive identification. But both photographs feature the telltale sign of a collision with a ship, and likely a recent one at that: a streak of red paint.
The photo up top was taken by the chief steward of the German ocean liner SS Prinz Adalbert, which on Apr. 15 was sailing through the North Atlantic mere miles away from where the Titanic had sunk the night before. At the time, the chief steward hadn’t yet learned of the Titanic‘s fate, so he wasn’t even on the lookout for icebergs. He simply spotted a streak of red paint along the iceberg’s base, which most likely meant a ship had collided with it in the last 12 hours.

Image: United States Coast Guard
This next photo was taken by a Captain De Carteret of the Minia, one of a few cable ships — vessels ordinarily used to lay deep sea cables, such as those for telecommunications — sent to the site of the shipwreck to recover corpses and debris. The captain claimed this was the only iceberg in the area, and the red paint was again a clear sign that a ship had recently struck it. There’s some disagreement over whether this was the only iceberg in the area, but it certainly seems likely that something had hit it, and the odds are good that that something was the Titanic.

Source ->

Earlier related links: & &

Sunday, April 15, 2012

100th Anniversary of the sinking of RMS Titanic

Today marks the 100th anniversary of one of the most famous ships of all time. Its understood that a combination of Engineering arrogance, poor planning and bad timing are what sunk the doomed ship, but new evidence adds more light to the timing aspect.

From the Daily Mail:
A once-in-a-lifetime lunar event created an super-high tide on January 12, 1912 - setting loose a deadly fleet of icebergs, three months before Titanic sank on April 14, 1912 with the loss of approximately 1,500 lives. The tide dislodged icebergs from shallow waters off the coasts of Labrador and Newfoundland, filling shipping lanes with icebergs.
The ice field in the area the Titanic sank was so thick with icebergs responding rescue ships were forced to slow down. ‘The event January 4 was the closest approach of the Moon to the Earth in more than 1,400 years, and it maximized the Moon’s tide-raising forces on Earth’s oceans. That’s remarkable,’ said Texas State physics faculty member Donald Olson.

All these factors contributed to abnormally high sea levels which helped dislodge grounded icebergs and send them into the shipping lanes of the North Atlantic, it is claimed.

Sources -> & &

More info:

Earlier related links: & &

Friday, April 13, 2012

Did Earth spread life TO other planets?

That's a new theory.
Here, read this!

From Geekosystem:

Scientists are spending a lot of time looking for worlds on which life may flourish — worlds like our own, or at least sufficiently like our own. How life would get there is a bit of an open question, but one possibility is a “panspermia” scenario where life is propagated between worlds by asteroids and comets. A new study on the subject of panspermia takes a look at a radical suggestion: That Earth has spread life to other, possibly life sustaining bodies.

Kyoto Sangyo University’s Tetsuya Hara wanted to see if it was possible for bits of our planet to wind up on worlds that we currently think could harbor life.

Hara’s research team looked at the Chicxulub impact — one of the largest known meteorite impacts in Earth’s history. In addition to being blamed for wiping out the dinosaurs when it hit 65 million years ago, Chicxulub also knocked an enormous amount of material into the air and possibly off the Earth. Their research sought to determine how many of these tiny pieces of home may have made their way through space and landed in places possibly hospitable for life.

Click the link below for the full story.

Click here for source of image

Source ->

Damn kids and their MTV!

Admittedly some of these I didn't really use a whole lot. But linked below are 2 very different lists of things that kids being born today (very likely) won't be using...

Can we start with how terrible fax machines are? Here are some of my favorites:

The more tech-related stuff from Gizmodo:

Dedicated Cameras and Camcorders

Smartphone cameras are already killing the consumer point-and-shoot and the family camcorder. Unlike cameras, which most of us carry only when we think we might need to take pictures, smartphones are always with us. They offer all kinds of apps and filters for adjusting pictures on the fly and they allow us to share our photos and videos online as soon as we take them. DSLRs and micro four-thirds cameras will remain with us, but within a few years, the average consumer won't own a dedicated camera at all.

Landline Phones

As of 2010, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 26 percent of U.S. homes had wireless phones only. By the time my son turns 5 in 2017, only a handful of old people and Luddites will continue to own house phones while everyone will likely use cellphones exclusively. By the time my son is 10, most businesses will have done away with their desk phones and saved a lot of money and hassle in the process.

Movie Theaters

Pundits have been predicting the death of the movie theater since the first televisions hit the market, but this time, it's really going to happen for a number of reasons. First, with large HD televisions going mainstream and 3D sets becoming more affordable, the average home theater is almost as good as the average multiplex theater. Second, studios and their cable partners have begun releasing some movies for on-demand viewing on the same day they debut in theaters, a trend which is likely to continue.
Finally, the cost of going to a movie theater is so out of control - movie tickets in New York cost around $13 each - that nobody is going to keep paying it. In a world where an on-demand film that's still in theaters costs $7 to rent and one that just left the theater streams for $2.99 from Amazon, who will spend more than $50 for a family of four to go see the same movie surrounded by annoying patrons, dirty seats and overpriced popcorn? Art house theaters that offer specialized films and a sense of community may remain, but the average multiplex will be gone before my son notices it was ever there.

Phone Numbers

I still remember my parents' phone number, which hasn't changed in more than 30 years, but how many of us dial numbers rather than just tapping a name in our contacts menu? With the advent of VoIP chat services like Skype, Google Talk and even Facebook audio chat, you can just dial someone by username. When my son is in high school, he'll be asking the pretty girl on the bus for her user ID, not her phone number.

Fax Machines*

In the age of email, instant messaging and 4G connections, there's only one lame excuse for the continued existence of the fax machine, a gadget that had its heyday in the 1970s, and that excuse has to do with signatures. Some companies and their lawyers will only accept a scribbled signature as valid on contracts and forms, so if you want to file that loan application or send in your insurance claim form with your signature on it, fax may still be your best option.
However, three things will finally slay the fax. First, more companies will start accepting online forms with electronic signatures as valid, so someone's illegible signature on a hard copy isn't needed. Second, for those who just can't let go of the signature requirement, touch devices will allow people to scribble their John Hancocks into digital forms. Finally, the death of landlines will also mean death for fax machines.


Now some things from a different era... My first car has a vent window, which I was a big fan of.

Church Key (how cool would it be if a company went "retro" for a run of these cans)

Many a barbecue and tailgate party was ruined in the pre-pop top days when it was discovered that no one had remembered to bring a church key to the proceedings. The pointy end punctured beer (and soda pop) cans open – one hole for pouring, one for a vent. The rounded end was used to remove bottle caps – twist-off crown caps weren’t invented until the 1960s, and even then it took some years for breweries to start using them on their products. But then again, most veteran party animals of that era knew how to open a beer bottle on a car bumper or table edge in an emergency.

Fotomat Booth

"my most famous role was as a casualty to a VW bus in BTTF"

The abandoned hut as shown in the right photo is still a frequent sight in the parking lots of older shopping malls across the country. Some of them were re-purposed for a while, but let’s face it – there’s not much you can do with a form-fitting booth situated miles from the nearest bathroom. Back when cameras still used actual film, and before drugstores offered one hour photo developing, Fotomat was the convenient method of getting your pictures back within 24 hours. You didn’t even have to get out of your car (this was at a time when fast-food drive-through windows were still few and far between).

No-Draft Window

At one time this small triangular window was standard equipment on every American automobile. Some folks called it the “no-draft” (its official name), some called it the “vent,” and others (including my Mom) called it the “wing.” Whatever the name, the purpose was the same: in those days when air conditioning was a very expensive option and opening the main driver side and passenger windows caused too much turbulence (not to mention noise) the no-draft provided quiet yet efficient air circulation while driving during warm weather.

*I really don't like fax machines

Source (and the whole lists) -> &

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Food post

2 unrelated dishes but I wanted to share/post.

We finally reassembled our grill so we can make grilled pizza again...

half whole wheat, half white flour (didn't haven any semolina), thinly sliced zucchini, chicken breast, Frank's, basil, oregano, black pepper and fresh shredded parm cheese.

Fresh Mozzarella > Shredded Mozzarella - even if I used too much.

Also Wifey made an English Trifle for Easter, cue jokes about Beef sauteed with Peas and Onions... now.*

*This one was delicious and did NOT taste like feet

Jenny McCarthy might not be helping

While the title is likely a stretch* a collection of  "old school"** diseases are beginning to make a resurgence all over the world. Many of which can be prevented by basic vaccination, better diet/exercise, avoiding unscrupulous people, and GOING OUTSIDE.

from Mental Floss (I posted the entire article):

Humanity spent the last hundred years virtually eradicating some of the planet’s most unpleasant diseases. But in the past decade some of them have started showing up again in increasing numbers of people. Here’s why.

1. Scarlet Fever

This deadly disease was first described in the 1500s. Due to its contagious nature and debilitating, if not deadly, effects, outbreaks of scarlet fever were greatly feared. Fans of the Little House on the Prairie series will remember that it was scarlet fever that resulted in Mary’s blindness.
Penicillin proved an effective treatment for the disease, until last year. A sudden spike in scarlet fever cases in China and Macao, up almost threefold and fivefold from 2010, respectively, has alerted scientists to a new, more virulent form of the disease. It was not just Asia that reported more cases, with a sharp increase in incidents in Michigan last year.

2. Rickets

Rickets was most common in industrialized cities during the 1800s. Children who worked in factories had poor diets and got little sunlight, resulting in a Vitamin D deficiency. This can lead to bone problems, bowed legs, and stunted growth. Since it is such an easy disease to avoid simply by spending a few minutes in the sun each day, as child labor laws limited kids’ time trapped inside, rickets all but disappeared.
Since rickets had been perceived as a disease that was “taken care of” for almost a century, doctors in the US and Europe were astonished when it suddenly started showing up in increasing numbers of children in the last decade, with several hundred cases in England alone in 2009. Part of the problem is that many children are back to having poor diets and spending very little time outside. But the problems also present themselves in infants, ironically because new mothers are trying to do everything right. Breast milk does not contain Vitamin D and as more women breastfeed their children exclusively, and for longer time periods, as well as protecting their children’s sensitive skin from the sun when they go out, Vitamin D deficiencies are becoming more common in infants. Doctors urge women to keep breastfeeding, but to give babies vitamin supplements as well.

3. Gout

The first documented case of gout was in Egypt in 2600 BC. While anyone could get it, it was known as “the king’s disease” because symptoms most often presented themselves in royalty and the wealthy; Henry VIII and George IV were both sufferers. There was no cure, and once someone had one attack of gout they were likely to get it again. The main symptom was unbelievably excruciating pain in a joint, usually a toe. Attacks could last up to a week, made walking almost impossible, and even covering one’s self with a light blanket was usually too much pressure on the joint.
The number of people suffering from gout in the US has almost doubled since the early 1990s, with 4% of adults presenting symptoms in 2010, and the numbers are expected to keep rising, for two reasons. One, our diets are atrocious. Eating rich, fatty foods, and drinking alcohol add to your risk of getting a gout attack. Two, gout is much more prevalent in the elderly. 13% of Americans over 80 suffer from gout, an increase of 7% in the last 20 years alone, and as more people live to that age the number will most likely continue to increase.

4. Syphilis

This sexually transmitted disease first appeared in Italy in 1494. While no one is sure where it came from, the date and location have led many historians to conclude it came to Europe from the Americas. For over 400 years it was completely untreatable, and became an epidemic in some areas. Vincent van Gogh’s brother, Winston Churchill’s father, and Al Capone all died of syphilis, while everyone from Henry VIII to Oscar Wilde to Adolf Hitler are suspected cases.
The discovery of penicillin in 1943 as well as a greater awareness of the dangers of unprotected sex led to increasingly fewer people presenting symptoms of the disease. In 2000, public health officials announced that syphilis was almost completely eradicated in the US. But over the next decade the number of people testing positive more than doubled.
There are a few reasons for this. One is that more people are getting tested for STDs in general, so more cases are being caught. But doctors also say it is because of problems with sex education. Many people who test positive contracted the disease through oral sex, which they mistakenly believe is safe without protection. Also, since the disease was so close to being eradicated, many young people were not taught about it in school and are unaware of the symptoms to watch out for.

5-7. Measles/Mumps/Rubella

In the last 150 years, measles is estimated to have killed over 200 million people. Mumps was once the leading cause of viral meningitis. And rubella epidemics resulted in tens of thousands of miscarriages and deaths. Then in the 1960s, vaccines for all three of these diseases were developed. They were combined into one simple vaccine, the MMR, and the number of cases plummeted.
But in 1998, the prestigious medical journal The Lancet published a study that linked the MMR vaccine to autism. The results were widely reported, fueling the anti-vaccine movement, and large numbers of parents stopped vaccinating their children against these diseases. In 2004 and again in 2010 the article and its findings were officially rejected as “utterly false” by the medical community, but the damage had been done. Outbreaks of all three diseases are increasing.
In 2011, 25 states recorded cases of the measles, the most in a decade and a half. The disease is especially dangerous in populations that have had no exposure to it, as the US hasn’t for forty years, meaning incidents are expected to increase among the unvaccinated. Britain, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Russia and Switzerland all showed increasing numbers of cases in the past decade. In 2010 a mumps outbreak occurred in young, unvaccinated men in Ireland. A mumps outbreak at the University of Iowa lasted 6 months and spread to 13 states. And just last month, more than 20 mumps cases were diagnosed on the Berkeley campus. Doctors expect more outbreaks of these diseases, as the children who were not vaccinated in the immediate aftermath of the article start sharing dorms with each other.

8. Polio

While suspected cases of polio go as far back as Ancient Egypt, the first clinical description of the disease wasn’t written until 1789. While occasional individual cases were not uncommon, it wasn’t until the 20th century that a worldwide polio epidemic occurred, peaking in the 1950s. Franklin D. Roosevelt is probably the most famous sufferer, but at its peak polio paralyzed or killed half a million people every year. Then two different vaccines completely eradicated the disease in all but four countries.
Those countries—Afghanistan, Nigeria, India, and Pakistan—are all showing increased cases of the disease in the last decade. In 2003 leaders in northern Nigeria warned against getting vaccinated, claiming it could cause infertility. This resulted in the disease spreading into Chad, where it had previously been eradicated; 132 cases were reported there in 2011. Afghanistan reported an all-time low number of cases in 2010, but that number more than tripled in 2011, thanks to some people’s refusing to vaccinate their children on religious grounds, as well as the open border with Pakistan, who also saw their reported cases more than double in 2011. Some extremist Muslim leaders in that country have denounced vaccinations as a Western conspiracy.

Source ->

**Scientific term

Monday, April 9, 2012

The quietest room in the world might make you crazy

"There is a standing bet that anyone lasting 45 minutes in the chamber, in the dark, earns a case of beer of their choice. No one has lasted more than a half hour."

"If the room doesn't... I will"

From TCB Mag's article:
It sounds inviting. Peaceful. Maybe even idyllic. But experiencing it can be more nightmare than nirvana.
In 2005, the Guinness Book of World Records proclaimed the anechoic chamber at Orfield Laboratories in South Minneapolis the “Quietest Place on Earth.” The nation’s only certified anechoic chamber in an independent lab, it is a room within a room within a room; the innermost chamber is lined with 3.3-foot-thick fiberglass acoustic wedges and floats on I-beams and springs. Both inner rooms have double walls of insulated steel; the outside walls are foot-thick concrete. The background noise level is minus 9.4 decibels. In this room, even a dog is deaf to the world outside.
The total absence of sound outside your body makes you keenly aware of what’s going on inside your body. Your heart pumps. Your lungs inflate and deflate. Your ears buzz. Your blood pulses. In an anechoic chamber, you are one noisy organism. With no reverberation in the room, you have no spatial orientation cues. After about half an hour in the dark, you can become disoriented. Eventually, you might experience visual and aural hallucinations.
The anechoic chamber doesn’t exist as a kind of engineering curiosity. The researchers at Orfield Labs use it to test products such as hearing aids, automotive parts, heart valves, hard drives, and sleep-apnea machines.


Source -> &

How to save yourself ~$50 if you have a Sony DVD+receiver

A few years ago wifey and I bought a Sony DAV-HDX274 from Costco because our DVD player had died and current receiver didn't have enough ports*. Its one of those All-in-one DVD/Receiver combos that in theory should only have a single cable going from it to your TV (hdmi), and your Cable/Sat box to it (optical or coax audio cable) for surround sound when watching Game of Thrones. It came with all the speakers and cabling needed all in one box, sounded decent and I think I paid under $200 (~3 years ago). The problem occured when we moved... we misplaced 2 of the proprietary speaker wires that have the special "DAV"** connector, so hooking it back up meant jerry-rigging or buying replacement wires for a ~3 year old receiver at ~$70... no thanks.

image of the original type of wire being replaced

I had a gift card about to expire from Radio Shack and there I found these. Originally for a universal AC adapter/charger kit, they were almost an exact match for the pins on the back of the receiver. At under $5 each they were still a much better deal than the actual part. They were round on the ends as opposed to the trapazoid-ish shape the DAV connector was, so I used my Harbor Freight rotary tool to shave off some extra plastic. Next I spliced on some normal speaker wire, hooked up the center channel and sub and was good to go. They fit tight in the ports, sound as they should and are easily removable.

Here are pics after I shaved down some of the excess plastic. Even if you have to buy the rotary

*Always get more ports than you think you need!

**That's just what I'm calling the port, I'm not sure it has an actual name

Monday, April 2, 2012

Batman was probably able to talk his way out of this

...and he did.

This is actually a really cool story.

From Jalopnik:
Batman's real name is Lenny Robinson, not Bruce Wayne, and his friends think he's a hero.
What Batman was doing when he was pulled over by the police earlier this week was traveling to an event for hospitalized kids as part of a "Superhero Celebration" organized by the charity "Hope for Henry" "Lenny is a one-man operation and he is amazing and beautiful because he's also doing this for free," says Allen Goldberg, who founded the organization with his wife after the experience with their son Henry, whose rare illness left him hospitalized for long periods of time (you can read more here about their experience).
"When [Henry] was alive and hospitalized — for months at a time — we had to keep him entertained, so back in 2000 I bought the first ever portable DVD player," says Goldberg. Henry watched a lot of Batman movies and cartoons so, after he passed away, they decided to give the same comfort and hope to kids whose circumstances land them in the hospital for extended stays. The program's gone from giving portable DVD players to kids to handing out iPads and throwing birthday parties for kids in the hospital on their special days. They even host those "Superhero Celebrations" at various hospitals throughout the year. Most superheroes are paid, but Lenny does it for free.

Rumor has it he's also getting a Tumbler built for these appearances...
Also check out the link to the charity he works with below.

Related links ->

Hope for Henry charity

First ever 1080 landed by 12 year old in CA

From RedBull:

For years the holy grail of all skateboard tricks, the 1080, has eluded the biggest and most talented stars in skateboarding. While many have tried, it was never landed — that is until now. From the most unlikely of places, it was not a super star skateboarder that made the historic first, but a twelve-year-old skate prodigy from Malibu, California, named Tom Schaar.

As Tom’s extraordinary talent became evident, during the eight short years he’s been skating, it seemed like he might have the 1080 in his grip. The one problem? The MegaRamp used for practice at the Woodward West camp provides some of the speed and velocity needed, but the 50-foot gap in the ramp hindered Tom’s ability to keep that momentum going all the way through to the quarter pipe to land the trick successfully.

By teaming up with Red Bull, they were able to bridge the gap (literally) by creating a custom built roll-over feature, allowing Tom to drop in on the 70-foot-tall MegaRamp and roll right over the giant gap. As a result, Tom was able to maintain his speed and his run resulted in the first-ever successfully landed 1080 (three complete spins) on the 27-foot-tall quarter pipe.

It probably didn't hurt that he was ~80lbs. Its pretty cool to see a kid do something that's been eluding great Tony Hawk for his entire career.

Source -> via &

Another version of the video (not really that different) ->