Friday, September 23, 2011

Cure for Cancer? Might Just be A Virus!

Cancer research is of interest to me.  Not just because my mother died of the disease but because my father was a research scientist pursuing a cure for liver cancer.  Though his years of research did yield some interesting results, they were nothing like this.

Researchers at  Penn State College of Medicine have discovered a virus that seems to destroy cancers. Specifically they found that the virus, adeno-associated virus type 2 (AAV2) which is benign in humans is deadly to HPV a precursor to cervical cancer.  Additionally, they found that in the lab the virus destroys human breast cancer cells very efficiently.

More here on Raw Story.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Caught on Red Light Camera? CERN Finds Particle Traveling Faster than Speed of Light.

The theoretical speed limit for all things in the universe has apparently been broken.  CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research have clocked neutrinos traveling faster than the speed of light.

According to an AP report:
"CERN says a neutrino beam fired from a particle accelerator near Geneva to a lab 454 miles (730 kilometers) away in Italy traveled 60 nanoseconds faster than the speed of light. Scientists calculated the margin of error at just 10 nanoseconds, making the difference statistically significant. But given the enormous implications of the find, they still spent months checking and rechecking their results to make sure there was no flaws in the experiment."
If this can be verified it will change the way we understand physics and rethink the laws of nature. 

My hope is this leads to warp drive technology. Star Trek here I come!

Texas Miracle - Not So Much (VIDEO)

Two new videos from Second City. These are funny and sadly true!

Tomorrow is Sexual Freedom Day

Sept 23, 2011 is Sexual Freedom Day.  So what does that mean? 

Well here is some background.  I am a board member of the Woodhull Sexual Freedom Alliance, a non-profit human rights group founded on the principal that sexual freedom is a basic human right.  That means all people should have the following:
  • Freedom to express their unique sexuality.
  • Open and unrestricted access to accurate sexual education and health information.
  • Freedom to make their own decisions about their bodies.
  • Freedom to enjoy sexual dignity, privacy and consensual sexual expression.
  • Freedom to express sexuality free from censorship, & irrational governmental policies regarding obscenity and indecency.
This is the start of what could be a long list but the point is we as a nation need to start looking at our sexuality as part of the human rights agenda.  To try to separate it is to become  bogged down in an existence of cognitive dissonance, where we try to keep separate our sexuality and the rest of our lives.  To live a full life it all has to be integrated and that means personally and in society at large.

Our nation has taken adolescent approach to sex for too long.  It is time we grew up and started being frank and honest in our discussions of sexuality and human rights. Part of the foundations mission is to provide a safe space for that discussion.

To learn more about Woodhull Sexual Freedom Alliance check out our website

Now what can you do for Sexual Freedom Day?  Well for starters try discussing the concept with friends.  Without dialogue, we will remain mired in our old ways and as far as sexuality is concerned, I don't want to remain an adolescent.  Come and grow up America!  Life is much more fun and fulfilling as an adult.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Ed Wood Move Over!

I am a connoisseur of awful films.  I love the bad dialogue and rotten effects of films like Ed Wood's "Plan 9 from Outer Space".  So how did I miss this one?

The Room, by actor-writer-director-producer Tommy Wiseau came out back in 2003 and not surprisingly I missed it.  Having seen a few clips, I have to say this is first rate schlock.  This film takes wooden acting to new levels, and it's $6 million budget must be a high mark for bad movies.  Watch this scene on a rooftop which is one of the highlights of the movie. (Warning, it is painful to watch)

It's no Robo Geisha, but it comes damned close!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Ben & Jerry's Introduces Schweddy Balls Ice Cream

Alec Baldwin's character on SNL gets his own flavor of Ben & Jerry's.  Check out the new flavor, Schweddy Balls, here.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Gamers Solve HIV Mystery Scientists Could Not

Score one for the geeks in Mom's basement playing games.  Apparently they figured out how a key protein is structured in HIV by playing a game. From a story in PC Magazine:
"Using an online game called Foldit, players were able to predict the structure of a protein called retroviral protease, an enzyme that plays a critical role in the way HIV multiplies. Unlocking the build of the protein could theoretically aid scientists in developing drugs that would stop protease from spreading.
Developed by researchers at the University of Washington, Foldit turns scientific problems into competitive games. Players were charged with using spatial and critical thinking skills to build 3D models of protease. Few of these players had any kind of background in biochemistry. "
Better living through gaming?