October 2007 Archives
1- Simpson's Avator! In the webpage of the new Simpson's movie you can build your own Simpson't avator! (There is a link on top of the page). It is really funny, even if you're not a fan of Simpson's. Here is the one that I made of myself...
2- "Google controls your e-mail, your videos, your calendar, your searches… What if it controlled your life? " SCROOGLED is a great fiction novel by Cory Doctorow, which is published in 5 parts in Radar magazine. (for the other parts see 2, 3, 4, 5) My good friend Jadi has also translated it to Persian, you can read it here.
3- Dr. Anthony Atala of Wake Forest University is building organs in his lab. Watch this video, he gets the bladder cells from the patients and cultures them in incubator and creates a new bladder that can be transplanted back to the patients without the problem of rejection. It is a pity that his homepage in the university is very brief.
Two quotes from Aung San Suu Kyi:
"The only real prison is fear, and the only real freedom is freedom from fear."
"What is there to be discouraged about? Gandhi said the victory is in
the struggle itself. The struggle itself is the most important thing. I tell
our followers that when we achieve democracy, we will look back
with nostalgia on the struggle and how pure we were."
Suu Kyi is the leader and one of the founders of Burma’s main opposition party, the National League for Democracy (NLD). In 1990 her party won the Burmese election by an overwhelming majority. But the ruling junta declared the results null and void and placed Suu Kyi under house arrest. As of today - 25 October 2007 - Aung San Suu Kyi has spent 12 of the last 18 years in detention.
Read More about the crisis in Burma, and Amnesty's campaign in Amnesty webpage.
Also see: US Campaign for Burma
Poland's liberal opposition Civic Platform party has won a massive poll victory, ousting Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski's conservatives. Congratulations to my Polish friends!
Lech Kaczynski, is Poland's president and does not face an election until 2010. I reckon it is going to be 3 difficult years for him!
Mr. Tusk, has thanked everyone that "helped restore hope between Poles".
Reporters without border have released the world press freedom index of 2007, Iran has the place 166th place (out of 169). Something for Ahmadinejad to be proud of, as he claims people in Iran are enjoying the highest level of freedom! Meanwhile 3 students have been condemned to 7.5 years in prison together. Jadi has written what they've done wrong!
Repression continues in China, one year before Olympic Games
Andy Samberg with the help of Maroon 5’s Adam Levine performed this song on Saturday Night Live, "Iran So Far". I've got no comments on this one. It is really funny, and the music is also really good. Watch the video here and read the lyrics in the rest of this post.
Amnesty has reacted to the launch of a new computer viral promoting the film Saw IV where players torture celebrities using electric drills, knives and spiked clubs. It is called the chamber of torture, even looking at the design of the webpage makes me feel sick. I really don't understand, how sick one should be to enjoy such thing.
"Torture isn't something funny that happens to celebrities. It's horrific and it is happening right now to real people. "If people want to see what's really going on - and do something to stop it - they should join the thousands who've Unsubscribed from torture and terror at www.unsubscribe-me.org. " Said Sara MacNeice, Amnesty International UK.
Unsubscribe Me is an Amnesty International campaign to unite against the human right abuse that is taking place in the name of "war on terror". On the main page there is a video of a performance artist undergoing, for real, interrogation techniques permitted in the CIA handbook. I added the widget of this campaign with the video in this post if you want to watch it see the rest of this post.
If you work in life science, as I do, it often happens that you want to prepare a presentation for a meeting or a talk, and you have to spend hours preparing illustrations to make it easier for the audience to understand your subject.
A colleague of mine sent me an interesting website today (thanks Marco!) that makes life much easier for life scientists or medical/biological students to prepare illustrations and presentations.
Servier, a French Pharmaceutical company has provided a new service called "Service Medical art" or SMART which is a collection of thousands of professionally designed medical elements in powerpoint slides and is free of charge for educational purposes. You can surf through the contents, find what might help you and use it. Most importantly you can ungroup the pictures in powerpoint and use them to make your own presentation.
They also have a few general stuff, so even if you're in medical or Biological sciences it is worth a short look at this valuable collection.
I'm sure I'll be using SMart, I thought I can introduce it here so others can use it too. If I find other open sources like this I'll introduce them here, if you happen to notice an interesting source please leave a comment and share it.
I hope "SMart" people will keep their good work going!
Today is the world day against the death penalty. This year's focus is on the proposed UN General Assembly resolution for a universal moratorium on executions.
Looking at the Use of the death penalty map in the world can prove that Capital punishment not only doesn't reduce the crime but also it gives oppressors a legal method for killing their opponents.China, Iran, Pakistan, Iraq, Sudan and United states were the six countries with most execution in 2006 (91% of executions took place in this six countries).
Death penalty world map.
If you are also believe that the Death penalty is a Failure of Justice take an action.
The winners of this year's Ig Nobel prizes were announced. The Ig Nobel Prizes are a parody of the Nobel Prizes and are given each year in early October for ten achievements that "first make people laugh, and then make them think." Organized by the scientific humor magazine Annals of Improbable Research (AIR), they are presented by a group that includes genuine Nobel Laureates at a ceremony at Harvard University's Sanders Theater.
The 2007 Ig Nobel prize for medicine was given to a study of the side effects of "sword swallowing".
The prize for Chemistry was awarded to a Japanese scientist who has discovered how to extract vanillin, the essence of vanilla flavor, from cow dung.
"Peace, in the sense of the absence of war, is of little value to someone who is dying of hunger or cold. It will not remove the pain of torture inflicted on a prisoner of conscience. It does not comfort those who have lost their loved ones in floods caused by senseless deforestation in a neighboring country. Peace can only last where human rights are respected, where the people are fed, and where individuals and nations are free. True peace with one self and with the world around us can only be achieved through the development of mental peace."
Part of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's nobel speach, University Aula, Oslo, December 11th, 1989. His Holiness finished the talk with the following poem which as he said gives him inspiration.
I am a fan of System of a Down. Unfortunately at the moment they're not going to give out a new album but they are working solo. On their homepage you can listen to all their songs and read their lyrics. I think my favorite are Hypnotize, BYOB and Lonely Day. Serj Tankian has a great new single called "empty walls" which you can watch the video and listen to it on his homepage. I will also post the video and the lyrics of this song in this post.
He has recently formed a non-profit organization with Tom Morello of Audioslave called Axis of Justice. Its purpose is to bring together musicians, fans of music, and grassroots political organizations to fight for social justice together.