Showing posts from June, 2014

Freaky Friday News: June 27, 2014

Poetry from Finland The Finish tax agency wants all business to use electronic filing for their tax returns.  To encourage this behavior, they wrote the following poem (as translated by Reuters):

Pencil and eraser,
No longer a racer.
Electronic is in - a clear win!
Come and experience,
Drop your resilience! A New Macroscelides micus (or Elephant Shrew) I could bore you with the details of this discovery, but there are really only two important facts about this that you need to know.
There are still more forms of life for us to discover.  The time for discovery continues.Elephant shrews are completely adorable! Okay, so number 2 is an opinion, not a fact.  But here are some cool facts about our newly discovered mammal: Third shrew species discovered in the past 10 yearsRust-coloredSmallest known species of elephant shrewNot a rodent, because shrews lack the large front teeth, butIs a insectivorous mammalNot related to true shrewsMore closely related to actual elephantsLive 2.5 to 4 years …

Wordless Wednesday: Debit Card Fail


Sins of the Father...

When I was growing up, I heard the phrase "the sins of the father are to be laid upon the children" quite a bit at church.  As a kid, I thought, "What a ripoff!  Kids get in trouble for the crap their parents do???"  I mean, I didn't want to end up in hell because of something my parents did.  And did this roll down generations like water?  Was I responsible for my grandparents' actions as well?

As I got older, I realized two important concepts.  First, the quote about "the sins of the father" is actually from Shakespeare's play, "The Merchant of Venice".  Yes, I know that Exodus has several passages that convey the same message, but it's Shakespeare's words that you hear today.  Second, the sins of the father do pass onto his children, but not in a direct way. I can explain it in two words:  role model.

That's right.  We, as parents, model everything for our kids, from how we eat, speak, sleep, handle emotions, get angr…

Wordless Wednesday: Teddy Bear Warrior


Sex and Gender in the 21st Century

As society learns to accept people for who they are, the variety of terms used by people to describe themselves has grown.  The terms "gay", "transgender", "lesbian", or "bisexual" drift through our media and conversation.  But to the average John or Jane Doe, what do these words mean?  How are they different from what we know?  How are they similar to what we know?  What are sex and gender in the 21st century?

Sex v.s. Gender To begin, we need a base understanding of sex and gender. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, sex is:  1 : either of the two major forms of individuals that occur in many species and that are distinguished respectively as female or male especially on the basis of their reproductive organs and structures
2 : the sum of the structural, functional, and behavioral characteristics of organisms that are involved in reproduction marked by the union of gametes and that distinguish males and fe…

Net Neutrality - Please Comment!!!

"Net Neutrality" - an alliterative phrase that sounds mostly harmless but encompasses the idea that the data on the Internet is treated equally, regardless of source.  Basically, net neutrality means that Internet providers don't get to say how you use your bandwidth.  It's similar to the concept that the electric company can't impose rules on how you use electricity and the telephone company can't censor who you call.

But Internet providers want to control the bandwidth to promote their own interests.  For example, Comcast throttled their own users' Netflix access during contract negotiations with Netflix.  Because so many Internet providers are also content providers - think AT&T U-verse, Comcast, and Verizon FIOS - these companies have a vested interest in slowing down their competition while maintaining speed on their own websites.

Currently, the FCC is asking for comments on the situation - and we need to act.  The FCC has the power to categori…

Wordless Wednesday: Gnome Exchange


Thoughts for Monday from xkcd