RaMbLeS

Welcome to RaMbLeS, a collection of weekly musings on life and Scripture. It all began in 2005 on Google’s blogspot as the aBeLOG (a name now recycled), a semi-autobiographical devotional that attempted to keep well-wishers abreast of my activities as I relocated to Scotland for a few years. Since my return, I’ve continued my RaMbLeS, and here’s its most recent incarnation on HOMILETIX.

Violence!

November 17th, 2018| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0

Violence!

Superheroes wield special powers to protect us from villainous knaves. And these characters idolized by young viewers send a strong message about good and evil.

But there’s a downside to this protection racket.

In “Violence Depicted in Superhero-Based Films Stratified by Protagonist/Antagonist and Gender,” a paper presented at this year’s American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference in Orlando, researchers find that, on average, the “good guys” are engaging…   Read more →

Gait!

November 10th, 2018| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0

Gait!

A new development in China. Another surveillance tool.

Gait recognition!

Yep, now software can identify you by your body shape and how you walk. Even when your face is hidden!

Police in Beijing and Shanghai have already deployed gait recognition as part of a larger drive to develop artificial-intelligence-driven surveillance and superintendence of the population.

Said Huang Yongzhen, the CEO of Watrix, a China-based artificial intelligence company:

Our system can identify people…   Read more →

Trust!

November 3rd, 2018| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0

Trust!

In “Trust and All-Cause Mortality” published in The Journal of Epidemiology and Public Health, researchers from Lund University and Stockholm University think that a decreasing level of trust may be shortening the lifespan of people! Those more trusting of others lived longer than those suspicious of others.

25,000 Americans in a survey conducted between 1978 and 2010 were the source of their findings. This was part of the U.S. General Social Survey which, among other…   Read more →

Candy!

October 27th, 2018| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0

Candy!

Candy season is upon us!

Said one journalist:

We’ve officially entered the long season of candy-centric holidays. After we drench ourselves in sugar this Halloween, we’ll do it again on Christmas and Hanukkah, Valentine’s Day, Passover, Easter, and in the weeks between these special days. The candy industry counts on us to celebrate with sugar for a huge portion of its annual sales.”

Indeed, American consumers aren’t scared to pull out all the stops their credit…   Read more →

Eyes!

October 20th, 2018| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0

Eyes!

The title of a study caught my attention last week: “Evidence That Leonardo da Vinci Had Strabismus,” published in the Journal of the American Medical Association: Ophthalmology, by Christopher Tyler from the City University of London.

…   Read more →

Least?

October 13th, 2018| Topic: RaMbLeS | 2

Least?

Recently a Grand Rapids, MI, man, David Mazurek, saw on the news that meteorite hunters were finding shards and selling them for thousands of dollars after a meteor shower this January in the Detroit area.

That made the guy curious about a nondescript rock that he’d been using as a door stop in his farm.

Said Mr. Mazurek:

Wait a minute. I wonder what this rock is. Maybe it’s worth something.”

It was.

That 22.5-pound rock was recently identified by Department of Earth…   Read more →

Pleasure!

October 6th, 2018| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0

Pleasure!

Scientists from Oxford, Hellenic Pasteur Institute, and the Glasgow Center for Virus Research published “Human Endogenous Retrovirus-K HML-2 Integration Within RASGRF2 Is Associated with Intravenous Drug Abuse” in a recent issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The long and short of it is that a virus may be responsible for the warping of our pleasures, especially addictions.

The human RASGRF2 gene, that one researcher called the “pleasure gene”…   Read more →

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