Friday, August 12, 2005

In the news

Shouldn't he have seen this coming?
Psychic's crystal ball burns down his flat in unforeseen blaze

M Vandrot, 24, who is studying botanics at Edinburgh University, left the ball on his windowsill while he visited the city’s Royal Botanic Garden. By the time he returned, the ball had destroyed his own and two other flats, and had left several others uninhabitable. . .

The fire had been started by the ball concentrating a ray of sunshine on a pile of washing.

The "Jerk-O-Meter"
CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts -- Ever wonder if that spouse, friend or co-worker on the other end of the phone is really paying attention? The "Jerk-O-Meter" may hold the answer.

Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are developing software for cell phones that would analyze speech patterns and voice tones to rate people -- on a scale of 0 percent to 100 percent -- on how engaged they are in a conversation. . .

For now, the Jerk-O-Meter is set up to monitor the user's end of the conversation. If his attention is straying, a message pops up on the phone that warns, "Don't be a jerk!" or "Be a little nicer now." A score closer to 100 percent would prompt, "Wow, you're a smooth talker."

However, the Jerk-O-Meter also could be set up to test the voice on the other end of the line. Then it could send the tester such reports as: "This person is acting like a jerk. Do you want to hang up?"

Liberals' campus envy
the university campus is the only place where everything that a parent has taught a young person for 18 years is completely undermined in one semester of their freshman year. . .

I say it all the time: Conservatives believe in God (the author of truth); liberals believe god is what they make him. Conservatives have standards; liberals defy limits, absolutes or boundaries. In conservative thinking, logic will lead one to its natural outcome; liberalism will lead you only to self gratification.

i must disconnect i must disconnect i must disconnect
ZHU ZHENGHUA thought his parents were taking him to Beijing to go sightseeing.

Instead they checked the 19-year-old into a clinic for internet addicts at the Beijing Military Hospital that claims to be the world’s first.

Eating Mickey D's to LOSE weight
Inspired by the documentary "Super Size Me," Merab Morgan decided to give a fast-food-only diet a try. The construction worker and mother of two ate only at McDonald's for 90 days -- and dropped 37 pounds in the process.

It was a vastly different outcome than what happened in the documentary to filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, who put on 30 pounds and saw his health deteriorate after 5,000 calories a day of nothing but McDonald's food. . .

One person went so far as to make her own independent film about dieting at McDonald's. "Me and Mickey D" follows Soso Whaley, of Kensington, N.H., as she spends three 30-day periods on the diet. She dropped from 175 to 139 pounds, eating 2,000 calories-a-day at McDonald's.

"I had to think about what I was eating," Whaley said. "I couldn't just walk in there and say 'I'll take a cinnamon bun and a Diet Coke.' ... I know a lot of people are really turned off by the whole thought of monitoring what they are eating, but that's part of the problem."


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