Archive for December, 2006

Some weird science and a column

December 25th seems to be a very strange day to publish a column: that’s why I published the latest Not Scientific Science on Christmas day.  It’s always cool to do something out of the ordinary from time to time.  And as senior columnist over at backwash, I have the opportunity to share my geekiness with all those great people on the net.

The year’s last article on Not Scientific Science is “Artificial Meat.”  Basically it’s all about the mass production of cultured/artificial meat in laboratory for proper human consumption.

“With a single cell, you could theoretically produce the world’s annual meat supply. And you could do it in a a way that’s better for the environment and human health. In the long term, this is a feasible idea.”
– Jason Matheny, University of Maryland doctoral student.

[…]

Artificial meat is a decent idea; it clearly has its advantages. For one, the nutrients in the meat can be controlled. For example, most meats contain much Omega 6, which can cause high cholesterol. With artificial meat, the Omega 6 can be converted into Omega 3, which is a healthy fat. Another advantage of artificial meat is that it could reduce the pollution that results from raising livestock.

However the obvious benefit of artificial meat is that it can help match the ever-increasing demand of meat around the world. Along the same vein, one may even fantasise that artificial meat may, one day, help in alleviating famine in some countries.

When I wrote this article, I didn’t particularly enjoy the final product.  But after some editing, I have to say that I’m quite satisfied with it.

Concerning weird science again, I stumbled upon an article on the web about geckoes.  Apparently, femaly geckoes do not need sex to reproduce! The link is over here, posted at backwash.  And from a fellow columnist (and reader) over at backwash, I got to know that female komodo dragons are also doing the same thing.

Seems like the females really don’t need us, males, any longer.  Kind of frightening.  No sex though.  Umm… boring life?

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Christmas message from Rafa

Wherever you are celebrating this festive season, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank you for your loyal support during 2006 and wish you all a very Merry Christmas.

Being manager of Liverpool Football Club continues to be a great honour for me and I can assure you that I, along with my staff and my players, am still driven by total determination and hunger to bring more trophies to Anfield.

Over the past twelve months we have brought two more pieces of silverware back to the club after beating West Ham in an incredible FA Cup final back in May and then lifting the Community Shield in August.

We know this club is all about winning trophies and making the fans happy and that is why we are all so pleased to have again enjoyed a successful year.

The job now is to ensure we keep moving forward and to keep improving as a team and as a squad. I remain convinced we have a better set of players now than this time twelve months ago, but we know there is still work to do to reach the level we are aiming for.

We have brought in a number of new players during the year and I am confident they will all have an important role to play in our quest for honours in the future. At the same time, a number of players left us during 2006 and I continue to wish them all the best with their new clubs.

As you will all know, there is much talk about the future of the club with reports that an investment deal is looming. I have remained focused solely on football and on my team while all the talk has been going on, but I am sure David Moores and Rick Parry will make the right decision in the best interests of the club and I look forward to being a part of what I am sure is going to be a very bright future at Liverpool.

As always, you will have a massive role to play in that future. I’ve said it before and I will say it again; you are the best fans in the world and I can promise you all that we’ll be working as hard as
possible to bring you more of the success you truly deserve.
 

I hope you all have a great Christmas and a fantastic 2007.

Best wishes.

Rafa.

[Link]

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Flickr: So Red A Head


So Red A Head
Originally uploaded by Jack Hess.

This photo seems to fit perfectly in this festive season. And it’s from one of my favourite photographer too.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

It’s official.  Merry Christmas.

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Poetry Thursday (My week 19.0)

Chant L’Amour (Eng: Sing about love)

by Joseph Reginald Topize aka KAYA

Mo rapel kan mo ti zenfant
Mo enseignant ti fini so letemp
Pou fer mwa komprend tousa ki emba loa

Mo ti vive dans siperstition
Etourer ek tou sa ki fer moi peur
Pou mo liberter zotte ki ti decider

La mo ena ene chance fine ouvert ek ene lalimiere
Mo koumense geutter ki frekentation ki mo ena
Mo ena ene chance fine ouvert ek so lintelligence
Mo lavie pieger telment li precier
La mo ena ene chance fine ouvert ek ene lalimiere
La mo pou dire zotte ki mo resenti

Bizin kozer laveriter zenesse
Nou fami ki ti la pa ti lai tender
Kommien fine mort ti p bizin lasagesse

Tou letemp ine regete sa ki bon
Tou nou lavie ti fini dan lahaine
Mo p chante lamour pou nou gagne liberter


Photo courtesy: Jahmusik.net


English translation

I remember when I was a child
My teacher took a lot of time
To teach me things that didn’t make sense.

I lived in superstition
Entagled in everything I’m afraid of
It was them which dictated my freedom.

Now I have an opportunity and a light
I start to care about the influences around me
I have an opportunity and intelligence
My life is in a fix because it so precious
Now I have an opportunity and a light
Now I will tell you how I feel.

Tell the truth, youngsters
The families which were there refused to listen
The many who died need intelligence.

We always rejected what was good
All of our lives ended in hatred
I am singing about love so that we earn our freedom.

Note:

  • KAYA is a Mauritian and is considered as the father of Seggae, a type of music close to Sega, in the country.  He wrote in Creole, the people’s language.  KAYA always sang from his heart and his songs are marvellous.  His voice is exceptionally full of emotions.  He died in February 1999 in a police cell and all facts point towards police brutality.

    RIP.

  • I did the translation and it’s not as excellent as the original Creole version.  If you understand Creole and you think you can better translate some verses, please let me know.
  • Check out Poetry Thursday and cry your heart out every Thursdays. The concept is simple: share poetry on your blog.

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My top 3 of 2006

2006 is practically over, with Christmas on Monday.  It’s been a good year overall, I think.  The academic year was very decent as we were the oldest and we acted like we owned the place.  Obviously I had my GCE this year and 2006 proved to be quite hectic as well.

I thought about doing some random top 3’s to really give you an idea of how this year went by.  And also, because I like lists too.

Note: I’ll keep adding top 3 with time as I get some other things to say.

My top 3 bands of 2006 (most enthusiastic about):

  1. KEANE
  2. Travis
  3. The Killers

My top 3 artistic websites of 2006:

  1. seanmetcalf
  2. The TragicTruth-Of-Me
  3. Jack Hess

My top 3 memories of 2006:

  1. My best friends and me
  2. My girlfriend
  3. My family

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John Pilger

Buy this.  More later.

UPDATE: John Pilger is most probably one of the most gifted, hardworking  and most importantly one of the most trustworthy investigative journalists of this era.  I have read some of his articles on the Atomic bombs released in Japan and it is just extraordinary how he manages to get the truth out of everything.

One of the latest projects of John Pilger has been a documentary on the expulsion of the Chagos inhabitants from their island by the USA.  Although I have yet to watch it (MBC under the previous government did not buy/rent/whatever the documentary), I have read his article on the matter in one of his books.  It’s really hard to read all those stuff because you get to know how cruel people can be.

But the truth is more important than anything else and buying this DVD will not only help John Pilger in his future investigations but also help the world to see a little more clearly.

Mr. Pilger, I am a fan.

UPDATE 2: 32 journalists died in Iraq this year, making 2006 the most deadly year for press in any one country ever monitored by press advocacy group Committee to Protect Journalists.

In most cases, such as the killing of Atwar Bahjat, one of the best-known television reporters in the Arab world, insurgents specifically targeted journalists to be murdered, CPJ found in a new analysis. Worldwide, CPJ found 55 journalists were killed in direct connection to their work in 2006, and it is investigating another 27 deaths to determine whether they were work-related. Detailed accounts of each case are posted on CPJ’s Web site. The figures reflect increases from 2005, when 47 journalists were killed in direct relation to their work, while 17 others died in circumstances in which the link to their profession was not clear. CPJ, founded in 1981, compiles and analyzes journalist deaths each year.

Afghanistan and the Philippines, with three deaths apiece, were the next most dangerous datelines in 2006. Russia, Mexico, Pakistan, and Colombia each saw two journalists killed. All are traditionally dangerous countries for the press, CPJ research shows.

via boingboing

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What’s up in my life?

1. Best friends: I love you people.
2. My own company: sky media
3. Science is so very cool
4. 6 month sabbatical.

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