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Comment Good (Score 2) 386

Let's welcome them home from this situation properly -- with pomp and circumstance. To say they deserve at least that much is an understatement. If we can manage to make this happen for the Yankees, then we need to make sure it happens for the troops.


1928 Time Traveler Caught On Film? 685

Many of you have submitted a story about Irish filmmaker George Clarke, who claims to have found a person using a cellphone in the "unused footage" section of the DVD The Circus, a Charlie Chaplin movie filmed in 1928. To me the bigger mystery is how someone who appears to be the offspring of Ram-Man and The Penguin got into a movie in the first place, especially if they were talking to a little metal box on set. Watch the video and decide for yourself.

White House Correspondent Tweets His Heart Attack 77

Tommy Christopher, who writes for, has reporting in his blood, so much so that he livetweeted every part of his recent heart attack. "I gotta be me. Livetweeting my heart attack. Beat that!" and "This is not like the movies. Most deadpan heart attack evar. Still hurts even after the morphine," were among his updates as he was rushed to the hospital. Christopher is now in stable condition after recovering from emergency surgery.

Whisky Made From Diabetics' Urine 226

It's doubtful that any other distillery will come up with a whisky that tastes like Gilpin Family Whisky because of its secret ingredient: urine. Researcher and designer James Gilpin uses the sugar rich urine of elderly diabetics to make his high-end single malt whisky. From the article: "The source material is acquired from elderly volunteers, including Gilpin's own grandmother, Patricia. The urine is purified in the same way as mains water is purified, with the sugar molecules removed and added to the mash stock to accelerate the whisky's fermentation process. Traditionally, that sugar would be made from the starches in the mash."

Company Presses Your Ashes Into Vinyl When You Die 101

Lanxon writes "Music lovers can now be immortalized when they die by having their ashes baked into vinyl records to leave behind for loved ones, reports Wired. A UK company called And Vinyly is offering people the chance to press their ashes in a vinyl recording of their own voice, their favorite tunes or their last will and testament. Minimalist audiophiles might want to go for the simple option of having no tunes or voiceover, and simply pressing the ashes into the vinyl to result in pops and crackles."

New Jersey County Fights Landfill Odors Using Fragrant Spray Trucks 104

Not to be outdone by the Chinese and their deodorant guns, Middlesex County, New Jersey has unveiled their secret weapon against landfill stink, a perfume spraying truck. The flatbed truck equipped with special nozzles now drives around the 200-plus acre landfill spraying hundreds of gallons of a soapy, slightly citrus-scented liquid. From the article: "'It has a pleasant, showery smell,' said Richard Fitamant, executive director of the Middlesex County Utilities Authority, which runs the landfill. 'It's not offensive and it's not overpowering. It's a light scent.' Faced with a competing mandate to handle the loads of trash while curbing the stench, officials have turned to the roving, over-sized air freshener to control the smells wafting from the 200-plus acre landfill."

Girls Bugged Teachers' Staff Room 227

A pair of enterprising Swedish schoolgirls ended up in court after they were caught bugging their teachers break room. The duo hoped they would hear discussions about upcoming tests and school work, allowing them to get better grades. It worked until one of them decided to brag about it on Facebook, and the authorities were called in. The girls were charged with trespassing and fined 2,000 kronor ($270) each in Stockholm District Court.

Comment Re:SSRI Disasters (Score 1) 711


Like gp, I was also "almost" diagnosed ADHD as a kid, but my physician decided against it on the grounds that I was "too smart"; ADHD symptoms make kids do badly in school. But as school got harder, my performance did eventually slip terribly. I didn't need a diagnosis to "stick to me" -- the symptoms did that all by themselves. Depression set in, because there was no explanation for my behavior other than me being a shitty, lazy person with no "common sense" who was often admonished to just "stop being an idiot." But that's the dividing line between an illness and a mere maturity issue -- I *wanted* to do well. I was not consistently able to, in spite of an unwavering, categorically declared willingness to do so.

The real idiots are those who see only see one side of the "overdiagnosis problem" -- really, it's just a "diagnosis problem." Other than denialism, do these people have a solution to the difficulty in making the right call? Which side of caution do we want to err on?

Yeah, SSRI effects can be nasty. In my particular case, they have never approached anything resembling the nastiness of depression. Another anecdote - I don't personally know anyone whose life has been ruined by an unneeded Ritalin or SSRI prescription, but I have known many people whose lives have been turned upside down (in some cases, completely ruined) by an acute outburst of a previously undiagnosed mental illness.


Man Takes Up Internal Farming 136

RockDoctor writes "'A Massachusetts man who was rushed to hospital with a collapsed lung came home with an unusual diagnosis: a pea plant was growing in his lung.' Just that summary should tell you enough to work out most of the rest of the details, but it does raise a number of questions unaddressed by the article: How did the pea roots deal with the patient's immune system? What would have happened if the situation had continued un-treated? I bet the guy has a career awaiting him in PR for a pea-growing company."

Rupert Murdoch Claims To Own the 'Sky' In 'Skype' 186

Crudely_Indecent writes "Not content to own just news stories, Rupert Murdoch is now going after individual words! His BSkyB is fighting a legal battle with Skype, claiming that it owns the 'Sky' in 'Skype.' From the article: 'A spokesman for Sky confirmed that the company has been involved in a "five-year dispute with Skype" over trademark applications filed by the telecomms company. These are, the spokesman added: "including, but not limited to, television-related goods and services."'"

Man Patents Self-Burying Coffin 159

disco_tracy writes "A California inventor has filed a patent for a coffin that screws into the ground vertically. The reason? It greatly reduces excavation labor and burial costs, decreases land use, and opens up more space for burials in unused areas of a cemetery. Writer Clark Boyd also lists 5 other unconventional burial options, including lye, ecopods, GPS devices that track bodies buried without headstones, cryogenics and — my favorite — getting buried in the sky."

'u' — the First Authentic Klingon Opera On Earth 165

j0ris writes "The Klingon are passionate opera-lovers, but little is known about their highly evolved form of musical expression. Floris Schonfeld is the initiator and director of 'u', the first authentic Klingon opera on earth. He studied Klingon music theory for over a year, and together with several experts developed various indigenous Klingon instruments. The Terran Klingon Research Ensemble has been set up to further develop a coherent Klingon musical practice amongst human musicians. 'u' premieres on September 9 in The Hague, Netherlands. An invitation by Klingon language expert Marc Okrand has been sent to Kronos, home planet of the Klingons, via radio telescope."
XBox (Games)

Anatomy of an Achievement 157

Whether they annoy you or fulfill your nerdy collection habit, achievements have spread across the gaming landscape and are here to stay. The Xbox Engineering blog recently posted a glimpse into the creation of the Xbox 360 achievement system, discussing how achievements work at a software level, and even showing a brief snippet of code. They also mention some of the decisions they struggled with while creating them: "We are proud of the consistency you find across all games. You have one friends list, every game supports voice chat, etc. But we also like to give game designers room to come up with new and interesting ways to entertain. That trade-off was at the heart of the original decision we made to not give any indication that a new achievement had been awarded. Some people argued that gamers wouldn't want toast popping up in the heat of battle and that game designers would want to use their own visual style to present achievements. Others argued for consistency and for reducing the work required of game developers. In the end we added the notification popup and its happy beep, which turned out to be the right decision, but for a long time it was anything but obvious."

Want a Body Piercing With That Server? 19

1sockchuck writes "The web hosting business is known for promotional gimmicks. But here's an unusual one: ServerBeach UK is offering a free body piercing with every new server ordered on April 1st. 'We were tired of the typical boring giveaways that have been done to death' said ServerBeach's Dominic Monkhouse. The stunt revives memories of earlier guerrilla marketing efforts by web hosts, like the 'human billboard' who was paid $7,000 to tattoo a hosting company's logo on the back of his head."

Scientists Say Toads Can Predict Earthquakes 66

reillymj writes "Researchers claim toads sensed a severe earthquake last year five days before it hit. Last spring's L'Aquila earthquake devastated the medieval city of the same name in Italy. Five days earlier, a group of biologists noticed some toads behaving strangely in a pond nearby that would later be the quake's epicenter."

The generation of random numbers is too important to be left to chance.