Ollabelle (980205) writes "David Bernstein, a nonprofit executive who lives in Gaithersburg, Md., has two sons, ages 7 and 15. He has previously written about how schools fail students with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Now he turns his attention to mandated curriculum in public schools, and argues that his sons shouldn't be forced to take any science class." Link to Original Source top
Poll - Will Ferrell on Wired Magazine cover was...
1. Something which has never occurred since time immemorial: a young woman did not fart in her husband's lap (1900 BC — 1600 BC Sumerian Proverb Collection 1.12-1.13)
2. How do you entertain a bored pharaoh? You sail a boatload of young women dressed only in fishing nets down the Nile and urge the pharaoh to go catch a fish (An abridged version first found in 1600 BC on the Westcar Papryus)
3. Three ox drivers from Adab were thirsty: one owned the ox, the other owned the cow and the other owned the wagon's load. The owner of the ox refused to get water because he feared his ox would be eaten by a lion; the owner of the cow refused because he thought his cow might wander off into the desert; the owner of the wagon refused because he feared his load would be stolen. So they all went. In their absence the ox made love to the cow which gave birth to a calf which ate the wagon's load. Problem: Who owns the calf?! (1200 BC)
4. A woman who was blind in one eye has been married to a man for 20 years. When he found another woman he said to her, "I shall divorce you because you are said to be blind in one eye." And she answered him: "Have you just discovered that after 20 years of marriage!?" (Egyptian circa 1100 BC)
5. Odysseus tells the Cyclops that his real name is nobody. When Odysseus instructs his men to attack the Cyclops, the Cyclops shouts: "Help, nobody is attacking me!" No one comes to help. (Homer. The Odyssey 800 BC)
6. Question: What animal walks on four feet in the morning, two at noon and three at evening? Answer: Man. He goes on all fours as a baby, on two feet as a man and uses a cane in old age (Appears in Oedipus Tyrannus and first performed in 429 BC)
7. Man is even more eager to copulate than a donkey — his purse is what restrains him (Egyptian, Ptolemaic Period 304 BC — 30 BC)
8. Augustus was touring his Empire and noticed a man in the crowd who bore a striking resemblance to himself. Intrigued he asked: "Was your mother at one time in service at the Palace?" "No your Highness," he replied, "but my father was." (Credited to the Emporer Augustus 63 BC — 29 AD)
9. Wishing to teach his donkey not to eat, a pedant did not offer him any food. When the donkey died of hunger, he said "I've had a great loss. Just when he had learned not to eat, he died." (Dated to the Philogelos 4th/5th Century AD)
10. Asked by the court barber how he wanted his hair cut, the king replied: "In silence." (Collected in the Philogelos or "Laughter-Lover" the oldest extant jest book and compiled in the 4th/5th Century AD)" top
Ollabelle (980205) writes "The Washington Post is reporting that an Indiana University doctoral candidate, Chris Soghoian, has discovered that Firefox Add-ons frequently check for update availability via unsecured calls back to their mother site, which can be hijacked at Wi-Fi Hot Spots. A hijacker can then insert malicious code under the guise of a false Add-on update. What's interesting is that (1) this works regardless of whether the user is operating under administrator or limited user status, and (2) Google's Toolbar update checks via unsecured connections and thus is vulnerable, and worse, has specifically disabled Firefox's habit of notifying the user of an available update and confirming a desire to install. Thus the malicious package can be loaded without any user knowledge of it happening.
The article is at:
http://blog.washingtonpost.com/securityfix/?hpid=n ews-col-blogs" top
Ollabelle (980205) writes "It's always been a bit of a mystery why plants absorb red and blue light while reflecting green when the sun emits the most visible light in the green part of the spectrum. Now a theory has come up with one possible answer: that the first chlorophyll-utilizing microbes evolved to exploit the red-and-blue reflected light of older green-absorbing microbes, eventually out-competing them through greater efficiency and the rise of oxygen.
[note to editor: I'm baffled how to tag this story to science, and nothing else. All the "topics" seem to be anything except 'off topic'. Thanks for any insight you can give.]" top