Recent Posts

Jan 26, 2010

Boy, 14 killed parents over chores

Chores are never a teenager's favorite way to spend a fall afternoon, but for 14-year-old John Caudle chores were the motive for murder, Colorado police say.

In an arrest affidavit, Caudle told investigators that on Oct. 26, 2009 he argued with his mother because he didn’t want to do household chores like taking out the trash or cleaning his room. Then he said he went to a gun safe, removed two .22 caliber pistols and shot his mother dead.

Caudle said he then hid in a laundry room and shot his stepfather when he
walked past a short time later.

Family members found the bodies. After allegedly killing his parents, he spent the evening watching movies and playing on a computer. The next morning, Caudle even drove his stepfather's truck to school, according to KUSA-TV.

His friends and teachers said that Caudle seemed "happy" the day after the murder, investigators said. Authorities have charged Caudle as an adult in the slayings. He faces two counts of first-degree murder.

How English was created?

The history of the English language really started with the arrival of three Germanic tribes who invaded Britain during the 5th century AD. These tribes, the Angles, the Saxons and the Jutes, crossed the North Sea from what today is Denmark and northern Germany. At that time the inhabitants of Britain spoke a Celtic language. But most of the Celtic speakers were pushed west and north by the invaders mainly into what is now Wales, Scotland and Ireland. The Angles came from "Englaland" (Land of the Angles) and their language was called "Englisc" from which the words England and English are derived.

The invading Germanic tribes spoke similar languages, which in Britain developed into what we now call Old English or "Anglo-Saxon". Old English did not sound or look like English today. Native English speakers now would have great difficulty understanding Old English. Nevertheless, about half of the most commonly used words in Modern English have Old English roots. The words be, strong and water, for example, derive from Old English. Old English was spoken until around 1100.

The most famous surviving work from the Old English period is the epic poem "Beowulf" composed by an unknown poet.

Jan 24, 2010

Saudi girl, 13, sentenced to 90 lashes after she took a mobile phone to school

A 13-year-old Saudi schoolgirl is to be given 90 lashes in front of her classmates after she was caught with a mobile camera phone.

The girl, who has not been named, was also sentenced to two months in jail by a court in the eastern city of Jubail.

She had assaulted her headmistress after being caught with the gadget which is banned in girl schools, said Al-Watan, a Saudi newspaper. The kingdom's use of such punishments has been widely condemned by human rights organisations.

Three years ago 16 schoolchildren, aged between 12 and 18, were each sentenced to between 300 and 500 lashes for being aggressive to a teacher.

Jan 22, 2010

Man Buried in Haiti Rubble uses iPhone to treat wounds, survive

U.S. filmmaker Dan Woolley was shooting a documentary about the impact of poverty in Haiti when the earthquake struck. He could have died, but he ultimately survived with the help of an iPhone first-aid app that taught him to treat his wounds.

After being crushed by a pile of rubble, Woolley used his digital SLR to illuminate his surroundings and snap photos of the wreckage in search of a safe place to dwell. He took refuge in an elevator shaft, where he followed instructions from an iPhone first-aid app to fashion a bandage and tourniquet for his leg and to stop the bleeding from his head wound, according to an MSNBC story.

The app even warned Woolley not to fall asleep if he felt he was going into shock, so he set his cellphone’s alarm clock to go off every 20 minutes. Sixty-five hours later, a French rescue team saved him.

Woolley’s incident highlights a large social implication of the iPhone and other similar smartphones. A constant internet connection, coupled with a device supporting a wealth of apps, can potentially transform a person into an all-knowing, always-on being. In Woolley’s case, an iPhone app turned him into an amateur medic to help him survive natural disaster.


Jan 21, 2010

Why Secondhand Smoke is Dangerous?

Secondhand smoke has a variety of names, including environmental tobacco smoke (ETS), passive smoking, and involuntary smoking. By definition, secondhand smoke is "sidestream smoke" (smoke from the burning end of a lit cigarette) or "mainstream smoke" (smoke that is exhaled from the lungs of a smoker).

When doctors refer to secondhand smoke, they are mostly describing sidestream, or ambient, smoke. Put another way, when a smoker lights up a cigarette, roughly 80 percent of the smoke burns off into the room and only 20 percent is inhaled. Sidestream smoke, then, is more dangerous than mainstream smoke.

While both types of smoke share most of the same compounds (including more than 200 substances known to be harmful) sidestream smoke has much higher concentrations of ammonia and chemical carcinogens such as benzene (an additive formerly found in gasoline before it was deemed to be too dangerous). A primary reason for this is that when a smoker inhales, he or she is drawing oxygen through the lit end of the cigarette, thereby nearly doubling the heat at which the smoke is produced. This increase in temperature results in the formulation of smaller, less harmful compounds.

Secondhand smoke is not solely derived from cigarettes; pipes and cigars produce many of the same harmful substances. In fact, a cigar produces much more sidestream smoke than a cigarette because of its larger size. Recent studies have shown that even hookahs carry a significant secondhand smoke risk

You may be surprised about the contents of secondhand smoke. From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, here is a list of some chemicals in secondhand smoke and the other places you can find them:
  • Carbon monoxide (also found in car exhaust)
  • Arsenic (rat poison)
  • Ammonia (window cleaner)
  • Acetone (nail polish remover)
  • Hydrogen cyanide (gas chamber poison)
  • Napthalene (mothballs)
  • Sulphur compounds (match tips)
  • Formaldehyde (embalming fluid)
  • Butane (lighter fluid)

Jan 20, 2010

Why cats have 9 lives?

The belief that a cat has nine lives is probably based on the fact that a cat is more tenacious of life than most other animals. Those who have undertaken to kill cats appreciate that fact.

Attempts have been made to trace the origin of the common expression back to ancient Egypt. It is often said that Pasht, or Bastet, the cat-headed goddess of Egypt, had nine lives and that this circumstance gave rise to the old saying about a cat having nine lives. Egyptologists, however, say that they have found no evidence for the statement. In fact Bastet, being a goddess, would be regarded as immortal. Nine, however, was a favorite number in Egypt, as well as with other ancient orientals, and it may have somehow been associated with the cat-headed goddess.


Jan 17, 2010

I can't go to work today because I murdered someone

A Belgian woman who is employed in an old peoples' home has come up with an original excuse for not turning up for work. 'I won't be at work tomorrow because I've murdered somebody,' 32 year-old Valerie

Pilloni wrote in an SMS which she sent to her boss at Herve, near Liege. And she was telling the truth. Police were alerted by her employers, after a man was found lying dead in a pool of blood at the nurse's home.

Ivan Brasseur, 58, had been stabbed several times. The couple had been living together for several weeks, but the reason for the killing is unknown.

Pilloni is now in custody.

Jan 16, 2010

The World's Oldest Lightbulb still burns

If Adolphe Chailet had his way some 110 years ago, buying light bulbs would be a rarity. This competitor of Thomas Edison is the engineering mind behind the world’s oldest light bulb, a 109-year-old light at Fire Station 6 in Livermore, California. Not only has Chailet’s design survived several moves and a multitude of earthquakes, it’s also survived going up in voltage from 110 to 120 volts. It’s indestructible!

Even when it was built back in 1900, the Shelby-style light bulb was remarkable. During a series of challenges, Chailet’s bulb proved to have the strongest filament, surviving increasing voltage levels while competitor bulbs burned out. The so-called Centennial Light just kept getting brighter. The light stays on all day, and has only been off for a grand total of one week, during station renovations in 1937. It’s not very creatively made or exceptionally bright these days, but it’s definitely stood the test of time.

When they say that things were better made in the old days, they’re not taking into account this light. Even in the old days, they didn’t make a bulb this good! Chailet didn’t build his inventions to fail.

Jan 14, 2010

World's loudest insect

The sound of the cicada love song can be deafening. In fact, it's the loudest song known in the insect world. Some species of cicadas register over 100 decibels when singing. Only males sing, trying to attract females for mating. Cicada calls are species-specific, helping individuals locate their own kind when different kinds of cicadas share the same habitat.

The Mating Call of the Male Cicada
The adult male cicada possesses two ribbed membranes called tymbals, one on each side of its first abdominal segment. By contracting the tymbal muscle, the cicada buckles the membrane inward, producing a loud click. As the membrane snaps back, it clicks again. The two tymbals click alternately.

Air sacs in the hollow abdominal cavity amplify the clicking sounds. The vibration travels through the body to the tympani, which amplify the sound further.

The Cicada Chorus
If a single male cicada can make a noise over 100 decibels, imagine the noise produced when thousands of cicadas sing together. Males aggregate as they sing, creating a cicada chorus. Together, the males sing and fly, landing on sunny branches near the tops of trees.

The Female Response – Wing Flicking
A female cicada that finds a male attractive will respond to his call by doing a maneuver descriptively called the "wing flick." As you might imagine, this involves a brisk movement of the wings. The male can both see and hear the wing flick, and will reply with more clicking of his tymbals. As the duet continues, the male makes his way toward her and begins a new song, called the courtship call.

The Alarm Call
In addition to its mating and courtship calls, the male cicada makes noise when startled. Pick up a male cicada, and you'll probably hear a good example of the cicada shriek. Similar to the mating call, the alarm call adds to the noise of the cicada population.

Jan 9, 2010

Why Porn Actors don't use Condoms?

The porn industry doesn't fall under the watchful eye of any government agency; it is self-regulating and has created certain rules that performers are required to follow. The Adult Industry Medical Health Care Foundation, known as AIM (, is a nonprofit organization that does all the STD testing for the porn industry. It was founded in 1997 as the centralized place for HIV testing, and today it provides full STD testing and treatment as well as other medical services.

The industry now requires that all performers arrive on a set with an AIM test no older than 30 days with negative results for HIV, chlamydia, and gonorrhea. While AIM tests for other STDs, performers are not required to disclose those results; Belladonna's post broke the silence about herpes and other risks.

So why doesn't everyone use condoms to protect themselves? The gay-male-porn industry adopted a widespread policy of mandatory condom use, but the straight-porn world has not followed suit. At the height of an HIV outbreak in 2004, which infected four performers, there was a quarantine period, followed by announcements from some companies that they'd be condom-only. By 2006, the policies were abandoned, and nearly all straight porn shot today is condom-free.

The rationale is that consumers don't want to see condoms in what's supposed to be a fantasy. Some producers claim that movies with condoms sell drastically fewer copies than movies without them. Performers themselves have mixed opinions.

Many would love to use them for every scene, but don't out of fear of losing work. Others, including women, say that it makes sex less comfortable or more difficult. Some male performers find that condoms hamper their ability to maintain an erection—thus the scenes take longer to shoot.

Jan 8, 2010

Why do you feel sleepy after eating?

Eating sugary foods or those made from flour, such as bakery products or pastas, causes blood sugar to rise higher than normal. This causes your pancreas to release large amounts of insulin, which drives one of the protein building blocks called tryptophan from your bloodstream into your brain, where it is converted to serotonin that makes people fall asleep naturally at night.

Many meals contain the L-tryptophan. This essential (cannot be made in the body) amino acid needs to be taken on an empty stomach and without any other amino acids or protein in order to make you drowsy.

Some people think, however, that feeling drowsy is not necessarily due to this tryptophan. Tracy Gensler, a registered dietitian in Chevy Chase, U.S.A, says tryptophan does not deserve nearly the blame it gets for making us sleepy. "The body wants to focus its efforts on digestion," Ms. Gensler says. "Drowsiness occurs after any big meal, regardless of the meal components. Digestion of any large meal, whether it's a high-protein, a high-fat or a high-carbohydrate meal, causes the familiar after-meal drowsiness."

Jan 6, 2010

How do you clean the world's tallest skyscraper, Dubai's Burj Khalifa?

Cleaning the windows of skyscrapers can be a daunting process. But never more so than for the company who landed the epic task of cleaning the windows of the world's tallest skyscraper in Dubai, the Burj Khalifa.

Towering at 2,717ft and with 1,292,500 sq ft of glass, the £1billion Burj is an imposing building, and one designers were determined would be sparkling clean in time for yesterday's extravagant opening ceremony.

Dale Harding, the general manager of cleaning company Cox Gomyl, said the firm installed £5 million of hi-tech equipment, including unique window-cleaning carousels which they designed, to ensure the Burj was constantly clean.

Twelve machines weighing 13 tons carry up to 36 cleaners, who use ordinary soapy water to wash down the Burj's 24,830 reflective windows in a process that takes three months from top to bottom.

The cleaners stand on the specially designed machines, which emerge from cavities in the skyscraper and track along rails skirting its curved towers.

Jan 5, 2010

Man Sleeps with Dead Wife for Five Years

Le Van, a 55-year-old man from a small town in Vietnam's central province Quand Nam, has been sleeping next to the body of his dead wife for the past 5 years. Wanting to be close to his deceased wife, Le Van began sleeping over her grave following her death.

After 20 months, the harsh weather conditions at night lead him to find another way of remaining close to her. Le Van reportedly dug a tunnel-like access point to her grave in order to sleep close to her.

Once his seven children became aware of what he was doing, they expressed deep concern for Le Van's actions and forced him to come home at night.

It was in November of 2004 that Le Van actually dug up the remains of his wife and took them back to his home. It seems he tried to immortalize his wife's remains by encasing them in clay and then subsequently clothing her. He then placed her in his bed in order to continue sleeping next to her,

Neighbors remain concerned for Le Van and are hesitant to visit his home. He opened up to the press about his actions but it remains unknown what will become of his dead wife's remains.

Jan 4, 2010

Worst Serial Killer of all time

Pedro Alonso Lopez is by far the most dangerous serial killers of all time with a victim count of over 300. Better known as the Monster of Andes, Lopez killed nearly 100 tribal women in Peru by 1978. Caught by tribal authorities who were ready to sentence him to death, an American missionary who was passing by convinced the tribe to let her take him to the police, the police - who let him go - were not convinced that the killings were of importance to them. Lopez than went to Ecuador where he would kill between three and four girls a week. Once caught in 1980, Lopez confessed to over 300 murders, police only believed him when an unexpected flash flood uncovered a mass grave with most of Lopez's victims. He then was released by the Ecaudor government and deported back to Columbia in 1998.

Jan 1, 2010

10 Reasons You Should Drink Beer

1. Reduces General Heart Disease
Vitamin B6, found in beer, prevents the build-up of homocysteine, an amino acid which has been linked to heart disease. Higher levels of homocysteine in our bodies can make us more susceptible to vascular and heart diseases.

2. Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)
Case studies have shown that 30-35% of men who drink beer in moderation are less likely to have heart attacks. Polyphenol, an antioxidant, is just as much present in beer as it is in red wines.

3. Reduces Risk of Coronary Thrombosis
Coronary thrombosis occurs when the opening of an artery becomes so small, the flow of blood is blocked. Beer acts as a blood thinner, reducing the risk of a heart attack.

4. Reduces Risk of Atherosclerosis
Beer boosts levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), the good cholesterol, lowers insulin levels, which is good for non-diabetics because it reduces the chance of developing atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries.

5. Reduces Risk of Kidney Stones
It is not 100% certain why kidney stones form. Genetics and diet have played a major role with those individuals who develop them. Kidney stones may be reduced in middle-aged men by 40%. Scientists are unsure if these results were due to the water, alcohol, or hops.

6. Insomnia
A common disorder that affects 1 out of every 10 adults. A good night sleep is beneficial for you energy level and mood. The general affect of beer has a tendency to make one drowsy.

7. Cancer
The hops in beer contain xanthohumol, a powerful antioxidant. Concentrations of xanthohumol occur naturally in dark beer and can assist your body in stopping the early stages of tumor growth.

8. Reduces Osteoporosis
Hops in beer contain phyto-estrogens, a compound that will help reduce hot flashes and fight osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. Beer should not be used as a replacement for estrogen therapy.

9. Lowers Cholesterol
Moderate consumption of beer has been shown to increase the HDL cholesterol and lowers the low-density lipoprotein (LDL), also know as the “bad cholesterol” in postmenopausal women. Analyzed data suggests more than one or two servings per day is not productive and considered detrimental.

10. Hypertension
Studies have shown a 14% lowered risk in high blood pressure by women consuming two or three beers a week. Hypertension is a disease where the blood pressure is chronically elevated.

An average 12oz beer contains 150 calories, no fat, no cholesterol, no caffeine, and is 92% water.