It’s obvious who should be blamed for the Raiders’ football ops drama

first_imgCLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos on a mobile deviceNone of this should come as a surprise.I’m not talking about the Raiders’ 0-3 start. That’s only somewhat surprising. (I’ll say this: they’re certainly the best winless team in the NFL.)No, I’m referencing the NFL Network report that surfaced Sunday morning that said Raiders coach Jon Gruden has his own scouting staff and that there’s strife amongst the Raiders’ front office as Gruden has effectively quarantined …last_img read more

Your Senses Awe Scientists

first_imgThe ear, the eye, the nose, and the mind itself continue to display wondrous capabilities.The EarIn a paper meant to argue for evolution, Science described the phenomenal capabilities of the human ear, likening it to a piano:In mammals, the chain of auditory biophysical events starts with the transformation of airborne acoustic energy into the mechanical vibrations of an eardrum. The lever action of delicate middle ear bones passes these eardrum vibrations to the oval window (Fig. 1), generating force gain via surface area ratio. This is the critically important step of impedance conversion that enables the efficient transfer of acoustic energy from airborne vibrations to the liquid-immersed mechanosensory hair cells in the cochlea. A second salient feature of many auditory systems is their capacity to analyze the frequency content of incoming sound waves. This process makes use of the mechanical anisotropy of the fluid-bathed basilar membrane to spatially decompose the acoustic signal into its frequency components, a biological form of the Fourier transform. Cochlear hair cells receive mechanical inputs at specific frequencies, depending on their position along the stiffness gradient of the basilar membrane. This “piano keyboard” mapping, or tonotopic organization, is the canonical mechanism for frequency selectivity in mammals.The authors found a similar chain of acoustic-mechanical-fluid energy transfers leading to frequency selectivity in a katydid ear, leading them to claim it was an extreme case of “convergent evolution.”  Ronald R. Hoy in his summary of the paper in Science actually used an illustration of a piano keyboard to portray the frequency selectivity mechanism.  See also the 11/15/2012 entry.The NoseA short article on Science Daily described a new finding about the sense of smell.  How are odors mapped to the brain? In “How Cells in the Nose Detect Odors: Braking Mechanism in Olfactory Neurons Helps Generate Amazing Diversity of Sensors,” the article introduced some of the complexity involved:The human nose has millions of olfactory neurons grouped into hundreds of different neuron types. Each of these neuron types expresses only one odorant receptor, and all neurons expressing the same odorant receptor plug into one region in the brain, an organization that allows for specific odors to be sensed.Scientists at UC Riverside studied the olfactory mechanisms in insects, and found another convergence: both insects and mammals – far removed from any possible evolutionary relationship – use a similar and very complex “braking” mechanism to repress genes until they should be expressed.  The article compared the mechanism to another human device: a typewriter –Ray explained that one way to understand the mechanism in operation is to consider a typewriter. When none of the keys are pressed, a spring mechanism or “brake” can be imagined to hold the type bars away from the paper. When a key is pressed, however, the brake on that key is overcome and the appropriate letter is typed onto the paper. And just as typing only one letter in one spot is important for each letter to be recognized, expressing one receptor in one neuron lets different sensor types to be generated in the nose.“If this were not the case, a single cell would express several receptors and there would be no diversity in sensor types,” Ray said. “Our study then attempts to answer a fundamental question in neurobiology: How do we generate so much cellular diversity in the nervous system?”But the nose’s “typewriter” is much more elaborate, because it can modulate the response level of the inputs.The EyeImitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  That’s why scientists at Case Western Reserve University are working to imitate the human eye’s lens, reported Science Daily.  A crucial trait of the lens’s effectiveness is its graduated index of refraction (GRIN), a property difficult to replicate in glass.  The researchers at Case Western have now achieved the fabrication of GRIN lenses by stacking thousands of nanoscale layers.  This “visionary design” promises a “new, more natural lens technology” that can begin to duplicate some of the benefits of biological lenses for those needing lens replacement surgery.  And that’s not all:Drawing heavily upon nature for inspiration, a team of researchers has created a new artificial lens that is nearly identical to the natural lens of the human eye. This innovative lens, which is made up of thousands of nanoscale polymer layers, may one day provide a more natural performance in implantable lenses to replace damaged or diseased human eye lenses, as well as consumer vision products; it also may lead to superior ground and aerial surveillance technology.It’s good they said “nearly identical” instead of identical, because polymer-based lenses only duplicate the graduated index of refraction.  They are not capable of self-repair and genetic self-replication.  It is, though, an important step in trying to replicate something natural that many of us take for granted as we read articles like this one.  “The human eye is a GRIN lens,” Michael Ponting, who is applying the research to a spinoff industry. “It’s a very efficient means of controlling the pathway of light without relying on complicated optics, and one that we attempted to mimic.”The BrainA remarkable story was posted on Medical Xpress: doctors in Canada have apparently succeeded in communicating with a man thought to be in a “vegetative state” for 12 years following an accident (a vegetative state is defined as inability to communicate or respond, even though an EEG shows brain activity).  Though Scott Routley is incapable of body movement, his brain and hearing are still apparently responsive.  Using functional MRI (fMRI), the scientists found an ingenious way to make contact:To try to communicate with Routley, doctors asked him to try to visualize himself playing tennis and recorded the way his brain responded using fMRI. They then asked him next to try to visualize himself walking around in his house and recorded the way his brain responded to that exercise as well. Then, they asked Routley to use the visualizations as a means of responding to questions – to visualize the tennis match as a means of answering yes to a question, for example…. team lead Prof Adrian Owen, said tests were run multiple times using the same question and answer process and he reports that the results indicate that Routley was definitely communicating with him and his team.Some are not yet convinced, doubting the interpretation of the scans.  If confirmed, though, serious ethical issues arise: “such research raises the possibility that science will discover that some people have been left to lie immobile for years under the assumption that they are unaware of the reality of their situation – a situation that would have to be addressed if it’s determined that they are and have been, capable of conscious thought.”  The BBC is making a documentary about it.  This is definitely a story to watch.  Doctors may have found a key to communicating with patients once thought to be out of touch with reality, giving them a way to reach out and express their pains and pleasures simply by thinking about them.Wonderful stories that speak for themselves.  Darwinism is useless to all this.  It’s like ugly fat that clogs the arteries of science.  Let’s put science on a fitness program.  The future could be bright for open minds running a lean, mean, well-designed machine. 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Denmark, Argentina touch down in SA

first_img31 May 2010The Denmark and Argentina football squads arrived in South Africa on the weekend, less than two weeks ahead of the 2010 Fifa World Cup kick-off. The USA World Cup squad was due to arrive later on Monday.Denmark’s squad was led by coach Morten Olsen, who told commented on the chillier weather: “I think the conditions are not summer now … So surely it will be a very high pace in the games.”Denmark, who will be based in Cape Town for the tournament, are drawn to play the Netherlands, Cameroon and Japan in group E. Their first game is against the Netherlands at Johannesburg’s Soccer City stadium on 14 June.Olsen just named his 23-man squad for the finals on Friday, dropping goalkeeper Kim Christensen, midfielders Michael Silberbauer and Michael Krohn-Dehli, and striker Morten Rasmussen.I love this place: MaradonaArgentina’s squad, led by Diego Maradona, was greeted by the media at OR Tambo International Airport. Taking questions, Maradona said: “I love South Africa.”Barcelona top scorer Lionel Messi also appeared, but did not answer questions.Argentina’s base in South Africa is at the High Performance Centre in Pretoria.Argentina have been drawn to play Nigeria, South Korea and Greece in their group, and the two-time World Cup winner begins their 2010 campaign against Nigeria at Johannesburg’s Ellis Park on 12 June.The USA squad, due to arrive later on Monday, will be based at Irene Country Lodge in Pretoria, and will train at the Pilditch stadium.Source: Xinhua-BuaNewslast_img read more

Federal judge rules against California’s attorney general in Prop 65 Case

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest In another win for U.S. agriculture and the national agriculture coalition fighting California’s false and misleading Prop 65 labeling requirement for glyphosate, U.S. District Court Judge William Shubb, for the Eastern District of California, upheld the preliminary injunction prohibiting California from enforcing the requirement until a final ruling on the matter is issued by the court.California Attorney General Xavier Beccera had filed a motion to lift a preliminary injunction issued by the court in February prohibiting the state from enforcing its labeling requirement. That motion was denied by Judge Shubb, who upheld the preliminary injunction prohibiting the state from enforcing its Prop 65 labeling requirement for glyphosate until all of the facts are considered by the court.“California is attempting to implement a policy that would cause damage to American farmers,” said Chandler Goule, Chief Executive Officer for the National Association of Wheat Growers. “The facts and science are on our side which show that glyphosate is safe for use. Farmers and growers are defending U.S. agriculture against California’s false and misleading Prop 65 labeling requirement, and maintaining this preliminary injunction is another win for them.”In the order, Judge Shubb ruled the state’s additional arguments “[do] not change the fact that the overwhelming majority of agencies that that have examined glyphosate have determined it is not a cancer risk.” (p. 5). He also reiterated that “the heavy weight of evidence in the record is that glyphosate is not known to cause cancer.” (p. 9)Glyphosate is approved for application in over 250 agricultural crops throughout the United States. Despite scientific findings from hundreds of studies and conclusions by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and regulatory agencies around the world that glyphosate is safe for use, California ignored facts, data, and science when it added glyphosate to the state’s Prop 65 list.For more information on the national agriculture coalition and glyphosate go to FixProp65.com.The National Association of Wheat Growers are the lead plaintiff in the case against California filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California. The plaintiffs include the Agribusiness Association of Iowa, the Agricultural Retailers Association, Associated Industries of Missouri, Iowa Soybean Association, Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry, CropLife America, Missouri Farm Bureau, National Corn Growers Association, North Dakota Grain Growers Association, South Dakota Agri-Business Association and United States Durum Growers Association.last_img read more

Resource Discovery: Just In Time Parenting

first_imgThis post was written by Kacy Mixon, PhD, LMFT, Social Media Specialist. She is a member of the MFLN Family Development (FD) team which aims to support the development of professionals working with military families. Find out more about the Military Families Learning Network FD concentration on our website, on Facebook, on Twitter, YouTube, and on LinkedIn. By Kacy Mixon, PhD, LMFTDo you know about Just in Time Parenting (JITP)? Today’s Resource Discovery features the JITP website. This online resource houses age-paced newsletters that can be a great addition to your professional tool box.  The JITP team offers in their note to professionals working with families that:“The overall tone of the newsletter is to encourage competent parenting and prevent child maltreatment by promoting sensitively responsive parenting, and by providing parents with alternative social cognitions to ones that commonly lead to abuse or neglect.”The JITP print and e-newsletters cover topics on physical, intellectual, emotional, and social skill development of children from prenatal to age 5. The newsletters are also available in a Spanish language version. The JITP newsletters can be helpful for professionals who are working with parents of young children, because they provide education about what to expect developmentally at each age point and promote healthy parenting skills.last_img read more

PH duo enter semis in squash women’s doubles

first_imgThe Filipino duo of Jemyca Aribado and Yvone Alyssa Dalida entered the women’s doubles semifinals in squash after beating the Thai tandem of Suviva Kitvijarn and Tuddaw Thamronglarp, 11-4, in the 29th Southeast Asian Games Tuesday.Aribado and Dalida, who drew a bye in the round of 16, arranged a duel with Malaysia’s Chan Yiwen and Nazihah Haris in the semis.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul SEA Games: PH fencers add 1 gold, 2 silvers, 1 bronze to medal haul Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ LATEST STORIES Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ The two easily ousted the Thais despite Dalida’s health issues. Dalida played with a strained right hand.The semis matchup against the hometown bets is on Tuesday, 8 p.m.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingThe men’s team, however, wasn’t so fortunate as Reymark Begornia and Robert Garcia were ousted by Ong Sai Hung and Mohd Farez Izwan of Malaysia, 11-2, 11-6. Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH03:04Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:36Manny Pacquiao part of 2019 SEA Games opening ceremony MOST READ Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side View commentslast_img read more

Global Ports Signs Concession Deal for Croatian Cruise Port

first_imgTurkish cruise port operator Global Ports Holding has signed a 20-year concession agreement for the operating rights of the Gazenica cruise port in Zadar, Croatia.The deal was signed between the company’s subsidiary Zadar International Port Operations d.o.o. and the Port Authority of Zadar.Under the terms of the contract, starting from the fourth quarter of 2018 GPH will manage all of the cruise port operations at Gazenica port over the life of the concession.The concession includes cruise ship passenger port and terminal services, an international ferry terminal, Ro-Ro services, vehicles and passenger services. It also contains a commercial area of 2,400sqm, with leasable retail and office space.The cruise ports infrastructure includes a maximum draft of 13m and 1170m of total pier length to accommodate big ships.Gazenica cruise port is the second new cruise port GPH has signed in 2018, increasing the number of ports the company operates to 17 ports in 9 countries.last_img read more