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Showing posts from April, 2011

Response to - The Last Chapter - The Death of the Book

Jesse: Oh Sohel, say it ain't so! I refuse to convert to a digital medium. There's nothing I love more than the weight of a book in my hands, the feel of turning a page, even the smell, lol. Anywho, I don't believe this, I'm at my local library quite often and it's always busy. Some books that I have requested from the library I am waitlisted and I am number 87 on the list or even higher. All is not lost. :)

Sohel:
Like you Jesse, I love to hold a real book, turning the soft and whispering pages, highlight the sentences that I like and most often than not fall in sleep just after reading a page turner chapter of a thriller or a thoughtful non fiction. I also don't believe that the traditional books will disappear soon, but sadly the trend that is accelerating has the unmistakable digital pointer. Libraries that have been cornerstone of disseminating knowledge to people from thousands of years from one form or another, will most likely sust…

The Last Chapter - The Death of the Book

"The death of the book will change things. For many, bookstores are special places of contemplation and discovery, and their loss will be deeply felt. Libraries too will have to rethink. Eventually, all books will be converted to a digital medium (even if only scanned), making it unnecessary for someone to visit a place to research or read."Link: http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2011/04/03/the_last_chapter/?sudsredirect=true

Mobile Computing is Thirty Years Old This Weekend

From 24 pounds to way less than a pound of today's mobile computing having astonishing prowess to boast. In computing the fast advancement is inspiring. Just think what more innovations are just around the corner, the possibility is limitless.Link: http://techland.time.com/2011/04/03/mobile-computing-is-thirty-years-old-this-weekend/

Early detection of hypertension is important

"Even if you don’t have high blood pressure, it’s important to take steps to keep it under control since it tends to get higher with age. For people with high blood pressure, those measures can sometimes reduce or even eliminate the need for drugs."Link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/early-detection-of-high-blood-pressure-can-limit-damage-to-your-heart-and-arteries/2011/02/18/AF3bFzqB_story.html

Spiderwebs In Trees: Pakistan Floods Cause Incredible Phenomenon (PHOTOS)

"What's going on in these pictures in incredible. It seems that the waters from last year's floods in Pakistan forced millions of spiders into these trees, creating these impressive images, according to the UK Department For International Development (DFID)."

Link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/04/01/spiderwebs-in-trees-pakistan-floods_n_843521.html

UFO sighting in Chicago?

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What do this kind of UFO sighting claim mean? Bogus?

The spread of superbugs

"50% of antibiotic use is unnecessary or inappropriate. Overuse, misuse, improper dosing and the use of substandard or diluted medicines all contribute to the rise of resistance. But so too do weak health-care systems and poor or unenforced regulations. Unless a strict code of practice forbids overuse, and systems are in place to monitor their behaviour, doctors have every incentive to treat the patient in front of them—not worry about the theoretical patient a decade hence who may suffer from the consequences of overuse of antibiotics."

Link: http://www.economist.com/node/18483671

7 Foods that Fight Cancer

"Help prevent cancer with these newest of these nutritional standouts, along with strategies for slipping them into your diet."

Link: http://www.menshealth.com/mhlists/cancer_fighting_foods/index.php?cm_mmc=Twitter-_-MensHealth-_-Content-Health-_-CurryFightsCancer

Why do you care?

The following excerpt from an article published in The Huffington Post has a profound message:

"A young man once came to Menachem Mendel of Kotzk. 'Rebbe, I can no longer believe in God. I can't believe in God because the world is so filled with pain, suffering, ugliness and evil. How could there be a God in such a world?!'

'Why do you care?' asked the Rebbe.

'What do you mean, why do I care? How could I not care? Innocent people suffer; the world is ruled by cruel people. Why does God allow it?'

Again, the Rebbe inquired, 'But why do you care?'

The young man screamed out: 'Someone has to care! Someone has to see the pain of the world and cry out! If not, all the suffering is meaningless. I care because I want a better world, not only for my children but for all children!'

The Rebbe responded, 'If you care that much, then God exists. You see, God exists in your caring.'"

Link: http://www.huffingtonpost.…

In India, Loan Sharks, Commercialization Cast Pall Over Microfinancing

"Once a darling of development programs, microlending in India is credited with helping many poor people become self-sufficient. But commercial companies moved into what had been the realm of nonprofits, handing out $7 billion in loans in the last decade and creating a competitive marketplace....."

Link: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/world/jan-june11/indialending_03-30.html

Congratulations to India! 2011 World Cup Cricket champion.

Congratulations to India! 2011 World Cup Cricket champion.

The Source Code

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A well directed thriller, in the similar model of memento, but dealing with metaphorical Shroedinger's cat. A good memorable movie.

The Science of Laughter

An excellent article on laughter: "laughter is primarily a social vocalization that binds people together. It is a hidden language that we all speak. It is not a learned group reaction but an instinctive behavior programmed by our genes. Laughter bonds us through humor and play."Link: http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200011/the-science-laughter

"I bought the next ticket -- the winning ticket"

Mega million jackpot winner who bought the 319 million dollar winning ticket: "I was at the counter and it was my turn to buy a ticket when I reached down to grab a Snickers bar from the candy display," Barth said. "And someone reached over me, actually cut in front of me to buy a ticket. I thought about saying something, but let it slide. I bought the next ticket -- the winning ticket. "

April Fool's Day origin

April Fool's Day origin is uncertain. Foolish?"April Fool's Day, sometimes called All Fools Day, is one of the most lighthearted days of the year. Its origins are uncertain. Some see it as a celebration related to the turn of the seasons, while others believe it stems from the adoption of a new calendar...."Link: http://www.icontact-archive.com/npqGSbDm0qQigBu6bm9VvkXH3amAM1Am?w=1&sms_ss=facebook&at_xt=4d95f97e222e3f4d%2C0

Obesonomics

"It’s not surprising that with supply decreasing and demand increasing, most people find it difficult to avoid gaining weight with age."

"The demand for calories increases with age, both because one’s income rises and because one’s taste for good, caloric food has been developed over many years of good eating. I didn’t know what an Esterhazy cake was 40 years ago, but now I can’t resist one if it’s on the menu! Sadly, however, the ......"


Link: http://www.freakonomics.com/2011/04/01/obesonomics/

17 Bad Habits For Your Heart

"some simple, everyday habits can make a big difference in your ability to live a healthy lifestyle.
Here are the 17 worst habits for your heart, and how to avoid them...."

Link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/03/31/heart-health-risks-_n_842784.html?ref=fb&src=sp#s259604&title=Watching_TV

8 Ways to Lower Cancer Risks

This is personal. I had seen my father and other relatives and friends battling with cancer. Visitations in the hospital or oncology department for loved ones, some of their prognosis were terminal, left indelible painful memories, and also the reminders of life's very fragility were unmistakable.

Please read an article published in WebMD and also do your own research from good sources. The excerpts and the link of the article provided below.

Excerpts: "there’s nothing magic about cancer prevention, no “killer app” that can instantly keep you healthy. Genetics play a big role in cancer, so even if you try to live a perfectly healthy life, it’s possible that you may develop cancer.

But experts estimate that at least a third of all adult cancer cases are linked to lifestyle, which is within your control. With every healthy choice you make -- and every unhealthy habit you drop -- you’re chipping away at your cancer risk.

Here are eight of the healthiest habits you …

When a Girl is Executed...for Being Raped

"Bangladesh has a robust civil society, which has reacted with outrage to the case." -- true, but more societal transformation is needed down to the rural villages where victims get trampled by initial horrific crimes and then by the lack of protection from wealthier perpetrators and sympathizers.Link: http://kristof.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/30/when-a-girl-is-executed-for-being-raped/

Pictures: Earthquake Hazard in Nuclear Power's Top Ten Nations

"Among the ten nations that produce the most nuclear power, Japan is not alone in facing an earthquake hazard...."

Link: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/energy/2011/03/pictures/110329-top-10-nuclear-nations-quake-hazard/?source=link_tw20110329news-nuclear

How Stress and Sleep Conspire to Make You Fat

"The trouble with stress is that it seeps into every area of your life — affecting your sleep, mood and the size of your waistline. The interactions between these factors were the subject of a recent study in the International Journal of Obesity, which found that people with high stress and poor sleep......"

Link: http://healthland.time.com/2011/03/29/how-stress-and-sleep-conspire-to-make-you-fat/

James Gosling, Java's Godfather, joins Google

James Gosling, father of Java, is from Calgary, one of the legendary and inspiring figures in computing world.Link: http://www.androidcentral.com/james-gosling-javas-godfather-joins-google

Revisiting “Chowringhee”

"Bengali readers have treasured “Chowringhee” since it was published in 1962. In this golden age of the Indian novel, it has finally been translated into English." -- excellent! Hoping to see more great translations and movies for writers like Shirshendu Mukherji, Mujtoba Ali, Sunil Ganguli, Humayun Ahmed and many other great writers."IN Sofia Coppola’s recent film “Somewhere”, a Los Angeles hotel offers a glamorous backdrop for a story about a lonely man, some dissolute women, an impressionable daughter and a simple message: only connect...."Link:  http://www.economist.com/blogs/prospero/2011/03/found_translation

Quality, not quantity

"AT THE depths of the Great Depression, George Orwell wrote of the English working classes: “The basis of their diet is white bread and margarine, corned beef, sugared tea and potato—an appalling diet."

"When the Copenhagen Business School asked some Nobel-winning economists the best way to spend money to help the world, nutritional projects topped the poll."

Link: http://www.economist.com/node/18440801

Avoiding another Evian

Richard Cohen is a distinguished columnist who writes with impeccable clarity using the tragic history of the second world war countering the argument of terrible indifference: "lives were clearly at stake and something had to be done. The world could not simply shove its hands in its pockets and stand by as some madman had his way with people in his grip — in spirit, a reprise of the Evian conference. The Libyan intervention established a precedent: There is such a thing as the international community and, as inchoate as it may be, it will insist on certain minimum standards even for dictators: Your people are not yours to kill."Link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/military-action-is-costly-but-not-as-much-as-apathy/2011/03/28/AFRI7mqB_story.html

Obama: "our responsibilities to our fellow human beings"

"To brush aside America’s responsibility as a leader and -– more profoundly -– our responsibilities to our fellow human beings under such circumstances would have been a betrayal of who we are. Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different. And as President, I refused to wait for the images of slaughter and mass graves before taking action." -- Obama was in his eloquent self, explained the urgency and the necessity of intervention in Lybia well.

The following excerpt points to one of the main reasons for America's decision to stop Gaddafi killing more innocent civilians: "Moreover, America has an important strategic interest in preventing Qaddafi from overrunning those who oppose him. A massacre would have driven thousands of additional refugees across Libya’s borders, putting enormous strains on the peaceful –- yet fragile -– transitions in Egypt and Tunisia. The democratic…

The Enemy within: A New Pattern of Antibiotic Resistance: Scientific American

"A new pattern of antibiotic resistance that is spreading around the globe may soon leave us defenseless against a frighteningly wide range of dangerous bacterial infections..."

Link: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=the-enemy-within

High Carb Diet = Heart Attack

Didn't know cereal has high carb. Per this article, it seems all the delicious foods are bad, like pizza, anything sugary, cereal, etc. Not sure how to interpret the message of this article.Link: http://www.healthhabits.ca/2009/06/30/high-carb-diet-heart-attack/

Walnuts 'are the healthiest nuts'

"Previous research has shown that regular consumption of small amounts of nuts can reduce the risk of heart disease, some types of cancer, type two diabetes and other health problems."

"Walnuts are the healthiest of all nuts because of their high levels of antioxidants and should be eaten more as part of a healthy diet, say US scientists."

Link:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-12865291

South Asia nuclear policy not shaken by Japan crisis

"It is very strange that the countries in the region are not doing what many other countries have done in terms of nuclear power," says Amod Dixit a geologist and an international earthquake expert. "Particularly when most of the region falls in the earthquake zone and the intensity of risk is several times high."

Link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-12859167

Alec Baldwin - Best performance

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I had seen this video before and each time burst into laughing watching Alec Baldwin delivering harsh message (of reality of harshness?)

Best Motivational video ever

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The Best Motivation Video

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The Power Of Belief - Anthony Robbins

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Tony Robbins: Why we do what we do, and how we can do it better

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Video: Eman El-Obeidi’s cousin speaks out (Translated)

"Presenter: Dear viewers, we end today’s show with an exclusive interview done by Al-Aan’s correspondent Jinan Musa with Mariam Al Omar, Eman El-Obeidi’s cousin, the woman who was raped by pro Gaddafi forces."

Video and transcript link: http://feb17.info/media/video-eman-el-obeidis-cousin-speaks-out-translated/

The spark that started a revolution

"Manoubya Bouazizi said her son’s decision “was spontaneous, from the humiliation.” Her clear blue eyes welled as her husband placed at her feet a small clay pot filled with a few white-hot pieces of charcoal, their only defense against a cold, raw, rain-swept day. The Bouazizi family has no money, no car, no electricity, but it was not poverty that made her son sacrifice himself, she said. It was his quest for dignity."Link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/in-tunisia-act-of-one-fruit-vendor-sparks-wave-of-revolution-through-arab-world/2011/03/16/AFjfsueB_story.html

In Tunisia, act of one fruit vendor unleashes wave of revolution through Arab world

"Revolutions are explosions of frustration that can build over decades, but it is often a single spark that ignites them."

Link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/in-tunisia-act-of-one-fruit-vendor-sparks-wave-of-revolution-through-arab-world/2011/03/16/AFjfsueB_story.html

Can Potassium Reverse High Blood Pressure?

"Good potassium sources include fruits, vegetables, dairy foods and fish. Foods that are especially rich in potassium include potatoes and sweet potatoes, fat-free milk and yogurt, tuna, lima beans, bananas, tomato sauce and orange juice. Potassium also is available in supplements. However, most potassium supplements come in dosages of 50mg . To get your daily 5 grams, you would need to take 100 pills."

Link: http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2011/03/can-data-predict-political-revolutions/71743/

Can Data Predict Political Revolutions? - Richard Florida - International - The Atlantic

"Statistics from 152 nations help create a new index to predict the revolutionary activism spreading through the Middle East and elsewhere..."

Link: http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2011/03/can-data-predict-political-revolutions/71743/

The Origin of Life: Scientific American Podcast

"The finding could mean that various building blocks of life were common in pools of water on the surface of the early Earth. What's more, the amino acids are similar to those found on certain types of meteorites. Which suggests that the basic constituents of life could be widespread in the universe.

But how those oases of amino acids started to come together and form life? Well, the origin of life as we know it rem."

Link: http://www.scientificamerican.com/podcast/episode.cfm?id=the-origin-of-life-11-03-27

Exercise may blunt salt's effect on hypertension

"Even if we don't understand the mechanism of how it works, we definitely do know that people who exercise regularly have healthier blood vessels," she noted. "The blood vessels are like a muscle. And if you engage in cardiovascular activity, they are more pliable and respond better to changes in blood volume and blood pressure."

"Physical activity may diminish the negative impact of a high-salt diet on blood pressure, a new study suggests."

Link: http://yourlife.usatoday.com/fitness-food/diet-nutrition/story/2011/03/Exercise-may-blunt-salts-effect-on-hypertension/45342450/1?csp=34news&utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+UsatodaycomHealth-TopStories+%28News+-+Health+-+Top+Stories%29

Renowned economist’s outlook darkens on global food prospects

"wars are getting more investment than agriculture, the boosting of which is a well-known ground stone of development. The jobs and education that come with development are what lead to political security."

Link:  http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/renowned-economists-outlook-darkens-on-global-food-prospects/article1957725/

Success is Counted Sweetest - a Poem by Emily Dickinson

SUCCESS IS COUNTED SWEETEST
By Emily Dickinson

Success is counted sweetest
By those who ne'er succeed.
To comprehend a nectar
Requires sorest need.

Not one of all the purple Host
Who took the Flag today
Can tell the definition
So clear of victory

As he defeated – dying –
On whose forbidden ear
The distant strains of triumph
Burst agonized and clear!



Read more here: http://bit.ly/cNc6fU

A Blasphemy - a Poem by Maurice Manning

A BLASPHEMY
By Maurice Manning

You wouldn't have believed it, how
the man, a little touched perhaps,

set his hands together and prayed
for happiness, yet not his own;

he meant his people, by which he meant
not people really, but trees and cows,

the dirty horses, dogs, the fox
who lived at the back of his place with her kits,

and the very night who settled down
to rock his place to sleep, the place

he tried so hard to tend he found
he mended fences in his sleep.

He said to the you above, who, let's
be honest, doesn't say too much,

I need you now up there to give
my people happiness, you let

them smile and know the reason; hear
my prayer, Old Yam. The you who's you

might laugh at that, and I agree,
it's funny to make a prayer like that,

the down-home words and yonder reach
of what he said; and calling God

the Elder Sweet Potato, shucks,
that's pretty funny, and kind of sad.

Read more here: http://bit.ly/bu1fwt

ABRAHAM LINCOLN WALKS AT MIDNIGHT - a Poem by Vachel Lindsay

ABRAHAM LINCOLN WALKS AT MIDNIGHTABRAHAM LINCOLN WALKS AT MIDNIGHT
By Vachel Lindsay

It is portentous, and a thing of state
That here at midnight, in our little town
A mourning figure walks, and will not rest,
Near the old court-house pacing up and down.

Or by his homestead, or in shadowed yards
He lingers where his children used to play,
Or through the market, on the well-worn stones
He stalks until the dawn-stars burn away.

A bronzed, lank man! His suit of ancient black,
A famous high top-hat and plain worn shawl
Make him the quaint great figure that men love,
The prairie-lawyer, master of us all.

He cannot sleep upon his hillside now.
He is among us:—as in times before!
And we who toss and lie awake for long
Breathe deep, and start, to see him pass the door.

His head is bowed. He thinks on men and kings.
Yea, when the sick world cries, how can he sleep?
Too many peasants fight, they know not why,
Too many homesteads in black terror weep.

The s…

Forgetfulness - a poem by Billy Collins

FORGETFULNESS
By Billy CollinsThe name of the author is the first to go
followed obediently by the title, the plot,
the heartbreaking conclusion, the entire novel
which suddenly becomes one you have never read, never even heard of,

as if, one by one, the memories you used to harbor
decided to retire to the southern hemisphere of the brain,
to a little fishing village where there are no phones.

Long ago you kissed the names of the nine muses goodbye
and watched the quadratic equation pack its bag,
and even now as you memorize the order of the planets,

something else is slipping away, a state flower perhaps,
the address of an uncle, the capital of Paraguay.

Whatever it is you are struggling to remember,
it is not poised on the tip of your tongue
or even lurking in some obscure corner of your spleen.

It has floated away down a dark mythological river
whose name begins with an L as far as you can recall

well on your own way to oblivion where you will join…

A brief history of victory (resistance / freedom) sign

How the V symbol went viral
From World War II through the Arab spring.

Link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/from-churchill-to-libya-how-the-v-symbol-went-viral/2011/03/18/AFzPiYYB.html