Notes & briefs: chocolate dna, prozac for puppies, eliza, etc.

Notes & Briefs
Chocolate DNA, Prozac for Puppies, ELIZA, etc.
In Yemen, she is known every- Khaiwani has been imprisoned sev- where as “Jane” (sometimes, “the eral times since 2004 for his cover-Zionist Novak”). Her picture sells age of a bloody uprising in Sa’ada, newspapers. She’s been denounced on a province in northern Yemen near Al Jazeera and invited to meet high- level Yemeni ministers in Washington. soon caught the attention of Novak, She doesn’t speak a word of Arabic and who started her blog, www.ArmiesOf has never been to Yemen. Meet Jane, around the same time Novak, a forty-six-year-old mother of to speak for “freedom of the press, two, who blogs on Yemeni affairs from equality, stuff like that” in the English-her living room in New Jersey and has language Arab media. Her outspoken become involved in the capital trial of defense of Khaiwani provoked the ire dissident journalist Abdul Karim al- Copyright 2008. All rights reserved. See for more information.
although her blog is banned inside the one recipient put it. The sextuple swap country. Khaiwani, who was tried this took nine surgical teams ten hours to spring for reporting on the rebellion, complete. “It was like musical chairs has become fast friends with Novak, as organs were carried from one room despite the fact that neither speaks the to another,” one medic described. All other’s language and they have never twelve donors and recipients have recov-met. “Some say there’s no progress in ered with no serious complications.
the Middle East,” she told the New York Times. “But if they could just see these people—they’re really modern heroes.” Following the Times story in May the city, but things are not always as 2008, Yemeni authorities, squirming they seem in Philadelphia this summer under the unwelcome international as traffic officials experiment with faux spotlight, commuted Khaiwani’s capi- tal sentence to six years in prison. of plastic whose colorful geometric “Leaders in our region transform into design gives the illusion of three-gods,” Khaiwani once wrote to Novak. dimensionality. Drivers approaching “They even come to believe in their them are meant to slow down at what fake holiness, which we aim to shatter, appears to be a row of small pyramids as they know they are humans just like sitting in the road. “I thought it was us. Democracy and freedom are not art,” new driver Andrew Stevens told granted by a leader of a regime. It is the Associated Press. At $60 to $80 a worldwide human achievement of all each, they are vastly less expensive the free people on earth.” In April 2008, surgeons at Johns A pilot study in Phoenix two years Hopkins successfully performed the ago indicated that they do indeed calm traffic—temporarily. “Initially they were great,” one policeman said, “until tives offered to donate but did not have people found out what they were.” compatible kidneys were grouped by a computerized tissue-matching pro-gram for a round-robin exchange. A For years now, federal air marshals five-way trade took place at the same the no-fly list have been harassed or hospital in 2006, and triple transplants even denied boarding to the planes are becoming more common. This they are charged to protect. “In some “domino approach” is a godsend for cases, planes have departed with-people who otherwise might never out any coverage because the airline make it off the waiting list, but “if employees were adamant they would someone gets sick or has a change of not fly,” an anonymous air marshal heart, the whole thing falls apart,” as told the Washington Times. According Copyright 2008. All rights reserved. See for more information.
to Secretary of Homeland Security “transgendered” children as young as Michael Chertoff, one major air car- rier reports a daily total of 9,000 necessity of this controversial treat-false positives from air marshals and ment option in a conversation with other innocent travelers misidentified the Boston Globe, arguing that there as terrorism suspects. The Terrorist is a “high level of suicide attempts” Screening Center recently announced amongst transgendered youth, and a review of the 500,000 most fre- quently matched names, and Chertoff make [a suicide attempt] after they’ve suggested that airlines create systems started hormonal treatment.” While of limited biographical data such as some may be convinced by Dr. Spack’s passengers’ birthdates to avoid some anecdotal justification, critics such as of the confusion, and to make it easier psychiatry professor Paul McHugh of to spot genuine threats.
The business of getting elected clinic, Dr. McHugh told Fox News President of the United States that “Treating these children with looks a lot different than when former hormones does considerable harm and President Clinton was campaigning it compounds their confusion.”for reelection just twelve years ago. Former Clinton administration press secretary Mike McCurry explained, as In a pharmaceutical market where Clinton campaigned for his wife during user prone to a laundry list of poten-her failed presidential bid, that the ex- tial side effects that inevitably require president wasn’t simply rusty: “Look, a capsule cure of their own, it should the game has changed. . . . All this stuff, come as no surprise that drug compli-the blogging and the YouTubing and cations resulting from over-medication, the way in which everything is instan- taneously available: I tell you, until you on the rise. Research done by Dr. Jerry get out there and are actually dealing Gurwitz, chief of geriatric medicine with the consequences—having what at the University of Massachusetts you just said as you were walking out Medical School, indicates that “38 mil-the door [all over the Internet], that’s lion older Americans suffer drug com-brand new to him.” Children’s Medical Boston has The compounding effects of some opened a “Gender Management prescription cocktails are reported to Service Clinic” co-directed by Drs. result in side effects so severe that Norman Spack and David Diamond. seniors are being misdiagnosed with The clinic is devoted to providing Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of therapy and puberty-delaying drugs to dementia—only to return to normal Copyright 2008. All rights reserved. See for more information.
after establishing a more moderate and small number by today’s spamming regulated medication routine. Veterinarians seeking to relieve mail addresses.
their owners) have begun prescrib-ing a variety of human behavioral If the words on this page are danc- medications to animals, the New York think you are a purple tree, then you Times reports. The antidepressant might at this very moment be benefit-Anafranil is marketed to dog owners as ing from the work of Albert Hofmann, Clomicalm; Slentrol is sold to combat inventor of LSD. Dr. Hofmann recent-canine obesity; and Prozac has been ly died in his Switzerland home at the given a distinct beef flavor and is sold age of 102. After accidentally ingest-as Reconcile for dogs. While behavior- al pharmacology is seeing widespread and thereby discovering its psychoac-acceptance and use among veterinar- ians, a vocal few remain skeptical. One many hundreds of times in an effort vet specializing in animal behavior to more deeply explore this state of insists on the effectiveness of training altered consciousness. Dr. Hofmann animals—such as feeding obese ani- mals less and providing chew toys to and then worked as a research chem-occupy the attention of dogs suffering ist at Sandoz Laboratories in Basel, from anxiety disorders or hyperactiv- such drugs in animals springs from a similar attitude to medicine in humans: Coming soon: the Chocolate Gen o- “We lead an unhealthy lifestyle and a number of fungal diseases threaten-then rely on drugs to correct it.” CLICK HERE FOR THE BEST partner with the federal government’s BIRTHDAY EVER.” Spam, the Agricultural Research Service and IBM generic name for that unsolicited e-mail on a $10 million project to develop that floods an estimated 90 percent more productive and disease-resistant of your inbox, celebrated its thirtieth cacao trees by sequencing and analyz-birthday this May. Gary Thuerk sent ing the entire cocoa genome. While what is believed to be the first elec- tronic message en masse when he sent five years, access to all the research out an open house invitation to about and information will be made available 400 people on ARPANET ( predecessor for free as it is gathered through the to the Internet) for a product presen- tation. While 400 people might be a for Agriculture (PIPRA). Executive Copyright 2008. All rights reserved. See for more information.
ed gene sequence has the potential to stood in the minds of the many people “provide positive social, economic and who conversed with it,” he later wrote. environmental impact for the more than 6.5 million small family cocoa cover how emotionally invested people farmers around the world.” Joseph Weizenbaum, author of the hours chatting with it, sometimes about conversational computer program intimate personal matters—and still ELIZA, died on March 5 in Gröben, more alarmed that some psychiatrists Germany. He was eighty-five. ELIZA, proposed ELIZA be employed as a clin-named for the Eliza Doolittle of ical psychotherapist. His 1976 critique Pygmalion and My Fair Lady who is of artificial intelligence, Computer Power taught to speak the King’s English and and Human Reason, ruffled more than pass herself off as a lady, was designed a few feathers in the computer science to mimic human conversation by ask- world. He took pride in the controversy, ing its interlocutors questions derived happily dubbing himself a “heretic.” from what they had just said. “Machines “Perhaps the computer, as well as many are made to behave in wondrous ways, other of our machines and techniques, often sufficient to dazzle even the most can yet be transformed, following our experienced observer,” Weizenbaum own authentically revolutionary trans-explained in his presentation to the formation, into instruments to enable Association for Computing Machinery us to live harmoniously with nature in 1966 (he developed the program at and with one another. But one prereq-M.I.T. in 1965). “But once a particular uisite will first have to be met: there program is unmasked, once its inner must be another transformation of man. workings are explained in language And it must be one that restores a sufficiently plain to induce understand- ing, its magic crumbles away; it stands human aspirations, and an appreciation revealed as a mere collection of pro- cedures, each quite comprehensible.” become worthy of living in nature.” Copyright 2008. All rights reserved. See for more information.


Science Fair Topics 2. Determining the Empirical Formula of Potassium Chlorate through Thermal Decomposition 6. How effective are natural mosquito repellents? 7. Does light affect the rates at which foods spoil? 8. Do all dishwashing detergents produce the same amount of bubbles? Clean the same 9. Is bottled water more pure than tap water? 10. How does the pH of juice ch

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