Monday, May 30, 2011

Female Doc's Cause Shift to Empathetic Politics (Article)

Article Highlights:

Doctors were once overwhelmingly male and usually owned their own practices. They generally favored lower taxes and regularly fought lawyers to restrict patient lawsuits.

But doctors are changing. They are abandoning their own practices and taking salaried jobs in hospitals. Additionally, half of all younger doctors are women, and that share is likely to grow.

American Medical Association supported President Obama’s legislation last year because the new law would provide health insurance to the vast majority of the nation’s uninsured, improve competition and choice in insurance, and promote prevention and wellness, the group said. 

Because so many doctors are no longer in business for themselves, many of the issues that were once priorities for doctors’ groups, like insurance reimbursement, have been displaced by public health and safety concerns, including mandatory seat belt use and chemicals in baby products.

The Maine doctors’ group once opposed health insurance mandates because they increase costs to employers, but it now supports them, despite Republican opposition, because they help patients. 

“When I came here, it was an old boys’ club of conservative Republicans,” said Joanne K. Bryson, the executive director of the Oregon Medical Association since 2004. Now her group now lobbies for public health issues that it long ignored, like insurance coverage for people with disabilities. 

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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Nature Objectively Boosts Physical and Mental Health

Research finds that outdoor exposure to "nature" positively influences physical and mental health as well as engendering trust and reducing aggression. Areas with less green space showed higher levels of depression and anxiety disorders. The study takes income levels into account.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Exploding Watermelons (Article)

News Feed Time

Watermelons in China have been "exploding" shortly after the administration of a new growth chemical, and agricultural experts are stumped.

Check out this BBC Video too

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Superhero Rocket Toy $295 (Video)


I can only imagine how this will be exploited by teenagers for petty vandalism. Imagine the implications for the classic "burning bag of poo" with this sort of high-velocity delivery system.

Also I'm sure it won't be too long before we a see a dude standing shirtless in a field taking one of these to the crotch at 45mph.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Newt Gingrich Announces Presidential Campaign Run on Twitter (Daily Show)

Modular Laptops and Electronic Waste (Article: The Economist)
Electronic Waste, also known as E-waste is fast becoming a leading contributor to landfill waste and environmental pollution. "In 2007 the EPA estimated that we threw away 2.25 million tons of electronics,1" many of which contain toxic contaminants such as lead, cadmium and mercury.

In resolving this problem legislation and public awareness have a long way to go, but you can help by taking your e-waste, cell phones, mice, keyboards etc.. to various retailers that participate in recycling programs (Bell Mobility, Sprint PCS, T-Mobile, Best Buy and Verizon) or check out this article for more ideas.

  • Aaron Engel-Hall, a member of the Stanford University team which last year created a prototype for the world’s first fully modular and recyclable laptop, explains that an entire portable computer can, theoretically, be recycled. "The most difficult step is separating the materials.
  • The modular concept, known as Project Bloom, is appealing in other ways, too. Modules, such as a USB drive, circuit board or LCD screen, could be swapped in as they break or become obsolete. The laptop design is such that it can be dissembled without tools in under two minutes. Such devices could prove a boon to cash-strapped consumers, all the while making them easier to dispose of (eg, the computer can be dismantled into parts small enough to post off to recyclers).
  • Similar thinking has been employed with some mobile phones and even cars, such as the modular Smart Car.

  1. Scientific American. "Gadgets are Garbage."
  2. First Image from 
  3. Second Image from

    Friday, May 13, 2011

    Doughnuts Make You Dumber: Junk Food and IQ

    Article at:

    It’s not just making them fatter. From the article: "Kids who start out eating the Standard American Diet high in sugar and fat have significantly lower IQs even when their diets improve later on."

    It is also interesting to note that high sugar intake is linked to cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s .

     Picture from