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Kerry's Majority, Gun Control, Disgusting Yoo, Bush, Cheney, And Co-Conspirators Support Communist Devised Torture As Interrogation Method

Craig Reynolds Techobriefs

by Craig Reynolds

Privacy: several items about Our Paradoxical Attitudes Toward Privacy. Like Google's attorney, I am "disappointed the court granted Viacom's overreaching demand for [YouTube] viewing history" although this case (Judge Orders Google to Turn Over YouTube Records) seems to be more about Viacom going after Google's deep pockets rather than the sort of "retail harassment" of individuals the music industry has specialized in: YouTube order: Does it threaten your privacy? The shoe is on the other foot in this case: Groups Sue U.S. Government Over Mobile Phone Tracking where civil liberty advocates seek to find the extent of government surveillance of cell phone users. A lot of his passionate supporters got quite annoyed when Obama decided to go along with a sleazy deal to help the Bush administration retroactively weaken the FISA law meant to protect Americans from government surveillance: Obama Voters Protest His Switch on Telecom Immunity. In fact it got me off my duff to complain on the campaign's community blog. As mentioned here last month, Google had been violating a law of its home state. It has now stopped: Google Changes Home Page, Adding Link to Privacy Policy.

Personalized medicine: as in the item mentioned here last week, there is new excitement about advances in medical treatments produced for a single individual. Here is more along those same lines: New test could track tumors in 'real time' and New Test Could Allow “Real Time” Tracking of Cancer Tumors.

Fast-living chameleon: OK, so there is some interesting science (From a Chameleon With a Short Life, Aging Insights?) about the life-cycle of Furcifer labordi (images). But I mention it mainly to be able to cite this article: Violent sex means chameleons die young. How can you not love that headline?

Yoga genetics: the idea that yoga and other forms of meditation can relieve stress has been recognized for hundreds of years, and in the scientific world since I was a student in the 1970s. I remember learning to meditate from an article in Scientific American ("The physiology of meditation", or was it a review of "The relaxation response"?). Now there is news of what goes on at a molecular level in the cells of your body: Meditation, Yoga Might Switch Off Stress Genes and Train Your Mind, Change Your DNA. Here is the scientific paper itself (available free to all because it was published in PLOS, an open access journal): Genomic Counter-Stress Changes Induced by the Relaxation Response.

Technobits: more than half of Internet Explorer users use an obsolete version: Does Your Browser Need an Expiration Date? --- Mac OS X market share surges 32% in one year --- I have never been a fan of Flash-heavy websites, they don't navigate in the typical way, its harder to get URLs from them, and they did not get indexed properly. Now that later problem has been fixed: Google Now Crawling and Indexing Flash Content (see also: Official Google Blog: Google learns to crawl Flash) --- some research indicating its the cell phone conversation that is the real problem and is not addressed by California's new law: What might the hands-free law accomplish? --- Laugh at High Gas Prices With a 282-MPG VW --- "...positive psychological effects of psilocybin...last for more than a year...": Psilocybin Study Hints at Rebirth of Hallucinogen Research --- a coworker sent around a link to an article about box-shaped watermelons in the context of a sappy homily about thinking outside the box, then another coworker replied with this: Funny Shaped Japanese Watermelons.