Alien video leaked

A man purportedly has evidence that little green men from space really do exists. In fact they are so real that he is campaigning for the setting up of an Extraterrestrial Affairs Commission in his hometown of Denver. In the latest update, a video of said alien have leaked onto the net. As usual the quality is blurry and leaves more questions then answers. Judge for yourself.

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Effects of humans on the planet ushers in the new epoch “Anthropocene”

Major changes to the planet are underway even as we speak. And our role in the rape of this piece of rock we call home has made an indelible mark so much so that the scientists saw fit to name an epoch after the fact. “Anthropos” is greek for “man” but sadly “Anthropocene” is not coined in recognition of humanity or at least not in any positive light. Starting from the 19th century onwards man started to leave huge carbon footprints all over the place, violating nature like a cheap whore. How long before she fights back and kicks us in the teeth? Not long, thats for sure.

To end on a positive note, as Peter Schwartz pointed out in Wired, if we have created this mess we should also be smart enough to reverse the damage. The healing starts with you!

Smoking = Death

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Personally I find smoking a disgusting habit. It is a common sight to see a father puffing out a cloud of death around toddlers and babies with nary a thought for the effects of second hand smoke.

So what is the elected government doing about it? Not much according to a statement by no less than the UN.

In its first comprehensive report on tobacco use in 179 countries, the U.N.s health agency said governments around the world collect more than $200 billion in tobacco taxes every year but spend less than one-fifth of 1 percent of that revenue on tobacco control, it said.

Recently WHO launched its Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic, 2008 highlighting the infiltration of the scourge into the developing world. Download the full report here.

CDC to investigate bizarre skin condition

Imagine waking up one morning to find that you have sprouted multicolored wire-like strands of hair from your skin. For more and more people this is not a page torn from some weird sci-fi pulp novel. So much so that the American Center for Disease Control have decided to investigate the claims of these individuals.

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Termed Morgellons, this bizarre condition existed as far back as the 17th century. Till now sufferers were largely thought to be delusional if not downright certifiable. Looks like the poor souls have finally got their day in the sun.

Update : More details from the CDC.

Genetics ‘R Us

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23andMe is a company that examines your DNA sequences for a fee (USD 999 to be precise). Why would you want to do that? Besides the boring purpose of trying to predict which illnesses you are likely to suffer from in the future, imagine going to a party for geeks and the boasting rights that you will command!

Even if you do not have a spare 1000 buckeroos lying around for that genetic map, the website provides simple-to-understand flash animations explaining the intricacies of our genome. There are worse ways to spend the weekend.

The kidney – Nature’s iPod

This is a dialysis machine.

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It stands about a meter and a half tall and is real heavy. It is clunky and unwieldy. Through a series of tubes, knobs and filters, it is meant to replace the function of the human kidney. It is the standard of care for people who have lost their own ability to rid their bodies of all the gunk that inherently accumulates in the process of living.

This is the kidney. An organ tucked neatly away in an unobtrusive corner of the human abdomen. There should be 2 of them in any normal person. Each one is slightly bigger than the size of the clenched fist. 190 liters of blood passes through the 2 of them every day for cleansing purposes. It is to the dialysis machine what the iPod is to the home stereo system.