Sunday, May 24, 2009

Senior quote

help me pick my senior quote!!! and keep in mind that i am EIC so if you STEAL MINE...i will KNOW and you will be very sorry >:D jk. the bold ones are the ones i like

“You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.”
- E.L. Doctorow 18

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.
~ Mark Twain 28

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
~ Mark Twain 44

There is no use trying, said Alice; one can't believe impossible things. I dare say you haven't had much practice, said the Queen. When I was your age, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.
~ Lewis Carroll 50

I LOVE THIS ONE! but it's too long, so what should i do? :(

One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire cat in a tree. Which road do I take? She asked. Where do you want to go? Was his response. I don't know, Alice answered. Then, said the cat, it doesn't matter.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Nanotechnology regulation and policy worldwide. Book review

Nanotechnology regulation and policy worldwide. Book reviewNanotechnology regulation and policy worldwide by J.H. Matsuura is a book based around an interesting idea: to provide an overview of the framework in which nanotechnology is destined to evolve. This includes intellectual property rights (IPRs), safety regulations and policies (existing or planned) which impact upon businesses active in this novel scientific and technological arena.

The first chapter containing an introduction to the field of nanotechnology is probably one of the least satisfactory to read in the book, as it lacks precision and contains some factual errors. For example the statement that ‘‘different classes of [carbon] nanotubes have different useful properties. Some (. . .) are exceptionally strong while others are exceptional conductors of electricity.’’ (p. 16) is a bit dubious as all carbon nanotubes have excellent mechanical properties. On the same page the description of the synthesis of nanotubes is as approximative mixing the various methods into one. It would probably have been wise to collaborate with a scientist to ensure accuracy in this domain. J.H. Matsuura nonetheless manages to convey the breadth of potential applications that nanotechnology promises. In the second chapter focusing on IPRs, the author presents a clear picture of the origins and drawbacks of the various protection regimes that can be applied to technological processes and products. Even the examples he gives to illustrate his point frustratingly do not add much to the argument. Especially relevant is the discussion around the issue of patents and patents enforcement which budding entrepreneurs should clearly consider before rushing in the ‘‘patent tsunami’’ of these past few years. Matsuura also recommends thinking carefully whether to patent or keep secret a step in the production process. Although keeping trade secrets seems to be a good idea for Coca Cola, in very active research fields such as nanotechnology there is a real risk that somebody else discovers what you are trying to hide.

Despite this, the author clearly presents the advantages and drawbacks of the various protection methods. The next chapter deals with regulation and presents a clear picture of the various levels of legislation which impact on nano-related products. In my view, the author is a bit quick in dismissing the need for new regulation concerning nanotechnology especially when he writes: ‘‘strong arguments can be made that manipulation of known chemicals on the nanoscale does not create new chemical substances’’(p. 78). This statement seems to go against what the supposed nano revolution is about, namely that by controlling size and shape of objects novel properties emerge. This ‘business as usual’ stance will be discussed later in this review. He however rightly points out that it is important to have a relatively stable regulatory framework to provide a good business environment. Chapter four is a list of governmental initiatives on nano. Although of limited interest, it is probably useful in that the reader does not need to compile their own list. The last two chapters aim at discussing more subtle points of regulation’s impact and propose a ‘‘roadmap’’ to regulate this field.

The book is accessible to a fair range of potential readers (scientists, venture capitalists, etc.) and is clearly written. The author is more at ease with the legal aspects than with the scientific or policy parts of the book, as could be expected from his professional background as counsel in a law firm. The book contains several interesting ideas but in some instances can be seen as pro-business. An interesting proposal that the author makes is that governments around the world should promote an open source approach to nanotechnology and other emerging technologies. This would result in a faster circulation of information and a faster rate of innovation. He also calls for an integration of nanotechnology regulation into existing frameworks, rather than the creation of ad hoc institutions, which seems like a sensible option. I tend to disagree with the author on several points: he seems to be seeing people debating the desirability of putting nano-products on the market in a ‘‘deficit model’’ approach (explain better and they will see the light); he is very critical of the precautionary principle applied in the European Union describing it as ‘‘permitting the potential for great harm to eliminate the need for an accurate assessment of likelihood of harm’’ (p. 93). All these arguments, combined with others throughout the book, make clear that J.H. Matsuura is much more concerned by not slowing down business and innovation than making sure we know what we are doing when attempting to regulate this new field, even though ideally we should be able to do both.

Overall this book is a decent attempt at dealing with a very complex issue. It provides quite a bit of information on IPRs and the regulatory framework and attempts to address several of the big challenges we are facing to maximise the benefits from this new field while trying to minimise the negative externalities. Finally, I would have liked to see a more forceful call for governments around the world to be much more pro-active in building the research capacity in the field of nano-toxicity (both to humans and the environment), which is, in my view, the best way to ensure that we make the most of nanotechnology in the coming decades.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Swine Flu Update

Everybody on television is all concerned about swine flu or pig flu or whatever they’re calling it at the moment.

I’m very extremely worried myself. I’ve compiled a list of warning signs that will help you determine if you have the swine flu or if you may be coming down with the swine flu.

1. Itchy Bottom: if your bottom (hiney) itches it may not be hemorrhoids. It may be your skin reacting negatively to the growth of a new, curly tail.

2. New Curly Tail: enough said.

3. Pink: if your skin is suddenly turning pink and it has never been pink, think flu.

4. Pug Nosedness: be careful to examine your nose daily. The transformation of your common human nose to a pig-like nose may be a first warning sign.

5. Affinity for Slop: if you are beginning to have an urge to roll around in mud and eat nasty leftovers from McDonald’s that you find in the floorboard of your vehicle, seek medical help.

6. Insults: if you are a policeman and someone yells, “Hey, pig!” don’t be too alarmed. Otherwise…911.

7. Snorting: many people find that snorting accompanies the pig flu syndrome. Snoring does not count, but if your snoring does sound something like a pig’s rutting seek help anyway.

8. Overeating: don’t make a pig of yourself. The swine flu will do that for you.

9. Dietary Repulsion: if the only type of food that repulses you is pork, you are either Muslim / Jewish or you have the swine flu or both.

I just tried phoned the NHS emergency 'Swine Flu' helpline but all i get is crackling

On your way to work on the bus/train/tube? Pretend you're on the phone and talk about your 4 week tour of mexico. Hang up. Then sneeze

Holiday packages to Mexico can now be had for under 20! - Prices not to be sneezed at

A mate of mine has just found out that he has swine fever but its ok........ his doctor gave him some oinkment for it

think I have that swine, pig flu thingy..... I'm coming out in rashers

I wonder if Swine flue gives you the trots??

Friday, May 01, 2009

The Irish Bagpiper

As a bagpiper, I was asked by a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man who had no family or friends. The funeral was to be held at a cemetery in the remote countryside and this man would be the first to be laid to rest there.

As I was not familiar with the backwoods area, I became lost and being a typical man, did not stop for directions. I finally arrived an hour late. I saw the backhoe and the crew who were eating lunch but the hearse was nowhere in sight.

I apologized to the workers for my tardiness and stepped to the side of the open grave where I saw the vault lid already in place.

I assured the workers I would not hold them up for long but this was the proper thing to do. The workers gathered around, still eating their lunch. I played out my heart and soul.

As I played the workers began to weep. I played and I played like I'd never played before, from Going Home and The Lord is My Shepherd to Flowers of the Forest. I closed the lengthy session with Amazing Grace and walked to my car..

As I was opening the door and taking off my coat, I overheard one of the workers saying to another, "Sweet Jeezuz, Mary'n Joseph, I never seen nothin' like that before and I've been putting in septic tanks for twenty years."

Monday, April 13, 2009

Toxic Personalities

Quick Miami rundown:
The following people are to be avoided at all costs:
1) People who compliment one person by insulting another. “Hey…HEY…most girls I know are STUPID…but YOU….” (props to Suarez for having a lunatic friend who actually pulls this shit on women in clubs).
2) People who blurt out vivid details of your personal life in a drunken SARAH stupor.
3) People who point out gleefully that your step-sister is not your sister, nor is she family, then act like they didn’t do anything wrong when you call them on their stupidity.
4) People (girls) who flirt like crazy with you despite the fact that they have boyfriends, then get all mad at you when you cross some invisible line with them that only they can see but you can’t. “You can kiss me on the lips but touch my ass BACK OFF!!!”
5) People (Ana) who rip on you endlessly, but when you do it back to them, they get all pissy and offended. If you can’t take it, don’t dish it out. Beeyatch.

More to follow…

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Love Letter

i love you. there, i've said it. i love the way i love you. i love the way i'd do anything for you. i love the way you'd do stuff for me. i love the mess that i've got myself into. i love the fact that we are so different that it always takes a lot of effort for us to click. I love the way you can behave in wlovever manner you like in front of me. I love the way you disrespect me with all the hitting and swearing. i love it when you always talk about the boy from hell, again and again. I love the fact that wlovever you do, I'd always say"it's alrite coz I love you". I love the situation that we're in. I love it coz I have to go home and leave you here. I love it coz I have to wait for you for years and years to come. I love the fact that we'll get into more and more arguments in the future. I love the fact that even though we argue and tear ourselves apart, we always make-up and pretend it's all gonna be alrite. I love the way I always make you sad. I love the stuff i did to you; the thing that you'll never forgive me for. I love the times when ego gets the better of both of us. I love the way you portray yourself in your blog; everytime you're pissed off at me you tell the whole world about it. I love the fact that not one single entry in your blog blames yourself for wlovever things that go wrong in your life. I love the fact that I never tell anyone, ever, when I'm pissed of with you. I love the fact that everyone thinks I'm the one that's madly in love with you. I love the fact that ppl think that I'm your slave. I love it even more coz it's all true; I am your slave coz I never have the guts to say no to you. I love the way you always have your way with me. I love the way I feel so happy when you're with me, knowing that it'll never last. I love the fact that it's all just a dream and someday I'll have to wake up from all of this. I love myself coz when you read this, we'll definitely have another argument. I love the way I always get blamed even when i'm right. i love the way i say sorry just to prevent a fight. I love myself coz i know i am such a jerk sometimes. I love the fact that now I've written all this, I don't have the guts send it to you. Now i love myself coz i know i wrote all this just because i'm angry. I love myself for being emotional with you. I love it when emotions cloud my judgment. I love you coz this rarely happens in my life; except because of you. I love myself coz I know i'll regret writing this. I love myself coz after I've read what i've written, i know that i don't love you anymore.

from that someone I luv

Thursday, February 26, 2009

how was school?...worst day of my life, what do you think?

today really diiiiiiiid suck. this week is the week of all the "first tests." and not to be cocky or anything, but i usually rock the first tests, it's keeping up the grade that causes problems later on. BUT NO! i am not doing well on my tests so far. french, i used to ace like a pro, now i can't even conjugate my verbs correctly! >:O and today's calc test was soooooooo depressing! i just know it will suck. the non-calculator part was...TERRIBLE! calculator will hopefully raise the despicable grade up. almost makes me look forward to an econ test because i actually completely know what's going on. and english objective tests are i don't always fail those every year ALREADY. ugh. how the hell am i supposed to raise like all my grades, write my 38972356845 college app essays, and study for sat2s?! HUH?!

whatever. all the stress will pass eventually (like in FEBRUARY) it's not that bad, i just hope i can keep my grades up :( colleges still see my 1st semester grades and i am not going to start sucking now!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Between myself and them: stories of disability and difference. Book review

Between myself and them: stories of disability and difference. Book reviewHow many of the barriers between people are imaginary? And how many of them are real? These are questions posed on the back cover of editor Carol Krause’s anthology, Between myself and them: stories of disability and difference. This question pulls the reader into the inner sanctums of the book and the personal narratives within the anthology. This causes the reader to reflect on the real or imagined obstacles to relationships and community that exist in their own life.

Krause explains in the introduction to her 222-page anthology that the space between the subject of the author’s narratives and the authors themselves can be ‘found in the way young adults share their identities, their adventures in learning, the experiences of segregation and belonging …’ (p. 4). The frank and textured stories shared by the young adult author’s in this book showcase the varied experiences and varied ways in which individuals understand and identify with the social construction of disability.

The book is divided into four sections: identity, work and school, community and living. Each section boasts a selection of stories that reflect on the four sections main themes, encompassing, but not limited to, issues on body image, sexuality, school and work transitions, sibling relationships, belonging and adversity. These individual stories are dynamic, engaging and insightful. They cover a wide range of topics, which at times can be challenging for the reader. For each essay or personal narrative included in this anthology shares an intimate glimpse of the world of the storyteller.

These perspectives are not broadly shared within mainstream media and serve to challenge the reader’s understanding of disability and difference.

In the first section the first contribution, Something like a vampire by Sara Scharf, explores the murky waters of ‘invisible disabilities’ and disabling conditions. Deconstructing the oft repeated ‘you look fine, what’s wrong with you?’ refrain from strangers and loved ones alike. This expresses how it would be simpler and more readily understood by the average person if she [the author] told people she was a vampire than to fully explain the disabling Chron’s disease and the accompanying disabilities that she lives with. This first essay is a wonderful exploration of invisible disabilities and disabling conditions, conditions that can be severely debilitating, impacting on all areas of one’s life, and yet are still largely unrecognized within society.

The second section, looking at school and work experiences, captures the transitions involved in moving from high school to college or university and then to work.

The essays in this section delve into the changes that occur in oneself and one’s identity when reconciling past, possibly insecure selves and negative experiences with one’s awakening present and future self. The narratives in this section explore ideas around self-confidence, self-worth and self-determination, while sharing the experiences of stepping out into a great big world of opportunity.

An example of a narrative from the third section that is both inspiring and heartbreaking is the contribution Living with Jade, a dialogue with Tina and Dave Reale.

This narrative, facilitated by the editor Krause, is a caregiver’s perspective on their daughter Jade. Jade is a relatively non-verbal 21-year-old woman who is actively involved with her family and community. In order to have her story included in the narrative her parents, Tina and Dave Reale, participated in a dialogue with the editor. The dialogue is a fascinating and loving account of life with Jade. Jade’s development and life as a young woman are discussed, as well as the different accommodations and family and system navigations that have had to occur in order to provide Jade with such healthy experiences. However, while it is wonderful to read and learn about Jade and her family’s struggle to create opportunities for independence for her, one cannot help but notice that Tina and Dave have lost their own independence and sense of identity through caring for their daughter, an uncomfortable fact of life for many involved in any caregiving role and one that is rarely acknowledged.

The fourth and final section, living, covers an interesting selection of topics and themes. The first theme, Health, illness and being includes a personal narrative that is again presented in dialogue form, of a brother and sister discussing the ideas in their contribution, Would you cure your disability? In this dialogue between Julia and Mathew Munk the role that disability plays in shaping the life of an individual is explored in a reflective manner. The idea that one might have a desire to cure their disability is juxtaposed with another’s belief that their disability has shaped them into who they are today. Ideas of self-identity are again explored, along with the notion that one’s experience of living with a disability can be isolating for one and life-affirming for another. In the second theme in the final section, suffering and joy, the personal narratives delve into ideas regarding happiness, pain and the abyss of despair, acknowledging the different understandings and identifications that one can have about a disability or disabling condition. These last few narratives, while examining emotions that are dark, also illustrate that hope takes many forms. These personal narratives toy with ideas regarding the intrinsic nature of one’s sense of self and how it is affected by the experience of living with a disability or disabling condition, ultimately recognizing that happiness and fulfillment are on one’s own terms.

Overall, Carol Krause’s anthology Between myself and them: stories of disability and difference is an interesting and thought-provoking read. The personal narratives are frank personal accounts and interpersonal dialogues that explore discourses of isolation, belonging, identity, difference and hope. The stories and dialogues are presented in a manner that is both unusual and welcome. The combination of first person narratives and facilitated dialogue allows the reader to fully engage in each contribution, stimulating conversations and questions regarding the issues raised.

This book will be a great addition to one’s personal or academic library.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Ashok and gsb blogs

I have been saying ashok,gsb,sandeep,ashvin to maintain their own blogs. Though ashok and gsb have started they are not blogging. sad :)

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Up yours Wenger and the Russian Revolution

Claudios face last night was a picture. What a guy. What a game. What a performance. Arsenal must be crapping themselves now. I say Chelsea will win the Champions League and the Premiership! Not too far fetched at all now!! He was mad with Joy!!! Nice one!!!

You Blues!!!