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Killer bacteria from outer space

As if cosmic rays and hard vacuum didn't make space dangerous enough, astronauts might have to contend with an unexpected threat: bacteria. Mice exposed to a strain of Salmonella typhimurium that spent 12 days in orbit on a 2006 shuttle flight were nearly three times as likely to die from the stomach bug than rodents infected with its earthbound ilk, a new study finds. Seems the microbes began to weave themselves into a resilient biofilm, possibly because the microgravity stilled the flow of the fluid bathing them, a study author told the Associated Press. - Scientific American

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Water On The Brain: The Man with Only 50% Grey Matter

An amazing tale of a French civil servant...
clipped from www.nature.com

 The man with a hole in his brain

Scans reveal a fluid-filled cavity in the brain of a normal man.

A serious case of water on the brain: scans revealed only a narrow rim of brain material.

Three years ago, a 44-year-old man was admitted to hospital in Marseille, France, complaining of weakness in his left leg. He had no idea what doctors would find to be the source of the problem: a huge pocket of fluid where most of his brain ought to be.

"We were very surprised when we looked for the first time the CT scan," says Lionel Feuillet, a neurologist at the Mediterranean University, Marseille. "The brain was very, very much smaller than normal." Nevertheless, subsequent tests showed the man to have an IQ of 75 — at the lower end of the 'normal range'.

The patient was a married father with two children and a job as a civil servant.

The large black space shows the fluid that replaced much of the patient’s brain (left). For comparison, the images (right) show a typical brain without any abnormalities (Images: Feuillet et al.

 blog it

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Google Desktop Search Error

If you get the error message "Windows cannot find..." when trying to launch a file retrieved by Google Desktop Search, it has probably been deleted. Google desktop keeps a record of deleted files. You can eliminate this problem by indicating in your preferences that you do not want deleted files to appear in your search results. There is no need to re-index your drive (as I learned today). Duh.

Milton Friedman Choir - The Corporation

The Milton Friedman Choir singing about Milton Friedman's definition of the Corporation. In his world view, the amoral corporation takes over the running of schools under theadvertising slogan "Choice."

Need Help with Outlook: View Reset Problem

I've looked everywhere and asked everyone so this is my last chance... that some anonymous surfer will come along with advice or find this in his search for the same thing.

Anytime I sort by a field (ie by clicking the relevant column heading) it redefines the view applied to the folder and removes the existing field grouping.

Eg: Let's say I created the view "Fave View" which is available for all folders. I define the view so that it groups by the field [Categories] and sorts by [Received] - descending. I apply that view to my Inbox. Now some time later, while in my Inbox, I decide I want to sort by "Sender" so I click the top of the [Sender] column. *Poof* - the grouping disappears. I now just have a flat list sorted by [Sender].

To fix this, I go to apply the view {Fave View} again but nothing happens. When I go in to define {Fave View}, under the "group by" option it now shows "(none)" ...? WTF? The {Fave View} has essentially been updated to reflect the last status of my inbox. It has been redefined.

Each folder seems to have its own version of the view... so the definition of "Fave View" for my sent folder still is grouped by [Categories].

Once upon a time, I could sort by any field while in the Inbox and it would not change the parameters of the view and the grouping would stay intact. Now the views have no permanence whatsoever and are redefined by every amendment I make to my active folder.

What can I do?

Google Music Search


Nine Nations on Soda Pop

Hot on the web today was a map of the US showing the distribution of generic names for soft drinks.

It struck me that there was some rough correlation to the "Nine Nations of North America"

Note: Some people split the continent up slightly differently. Large parts of Ecotopia are claimed by the Cascadians and New England appears to be properly named Atlantica.


Furl Spam: Out of Control

Further to my last post on Furl Spam (Is the Times Spamming Furl?), Furl has totally lost control. 20 of the top 25 sites Furled today are Golf related spam. Has Furl just been completely abandoned to the elements?

Furl lost the war to del.icio.us some time ago but still had a good following because of their ability to back-up pages saved. But if it's going to just become a repository for spam, they will likely lose the even their hardcore fans.

Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland: MP3

This is a recording of an amateur choir (Colibri) in Singapore performing JS Bach's Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland. Again, the sound quality is poor but... well whatever. It's worth every penny you pay.

Nun-komm.zip (5Mb)

This concert was held in early December 2005 at the Kampong Kapor Methodist Church and was sponsored by Artyfakt.