Archive for July 11th, 2010

July 11, 2010

Quinoa

Quinoa [keen-wah] is a grain-like crop originating from the Andean region of South America, where it has been an important food for 6,000 years. It is a pseudocereal rather than a true cereal, or grain because it is not a member of the grass family. Quinoa is closely related to species such as beets, spinach, and tumbleweeds, and is grown primarily for its edible seeds, although its leaves are also edible.

Quinoa has become highly appreciated for its nutritional value, as its protein content is very high (12%–18%). Unlike wheat or rice (which are low in lysine), quinoa contains a balanced set of essential amino acids for humans, making it an unusually complete protein source among plant foods.

July 11, 2010

Eternal September

Eternal September is a Usenet slang expression for the period beginning September 1993. The expression encapsulates the belief that an endless influx of new users since that date has continuously degraded standards of discourse and behavior on Usenet and the wider Internet. Usenet originated among universities where every year in September, a large number of new students acquired access to Usenet, and it took some time for them to acclimate themselves to the network’s standards of conduct and ‘netiquette.’ After a month or so, these new users would typically learn to comport themselves according to its conventions. September thus heralded the peak influx of disruptive newcomers to the network.

In 1993, America Online began offering Usenet access to its tens of thousands, and later millions, of users, and the massive inundation of new users was called, ‘…the September that never ended.’

July 11, 2010

Spoof

The word spoof was coined by English comedian Arthur Roberts and popularized by a card game that he invented called Spoof, which involved trickery and nonsense. The first recorded reference to the game is in 1884. Soon the word took on the general meaning of ‘nonsense, trickery,’ first recorded in 1889. The verb spoof is first recorded in 1889 as well, in the sense ‘to deceive.’ These senses are now less widely used than the noun meaning of ‘a light parody or satirical imitation,’ first recorded in 1958, and the verb sense ‘to satirize gently,’ first recorded in 1927.

In the context of network security, a spoofing attack is a situation in which one person or program successfully masquerades as another by falsifying data and thereby gaining an illegitimate advantage. Another kind of spoofing is ‘webpage spoofing,’ also known as phishing. In this attack, a legitimate web page such as a bank’s site is reproduced in ‘look and feel’ on another server under control of the attacker. The main intent is to fool the users into thinking that they are connected to a trusted site, for instance to harvest user names and passwords. Spoof is also the name for an object used to mask the odor of marijuana or tobacco smoke. It is most commonly made of a paper towel roll tube stuffed with dryer sheets through which the smoke is blown.

July 11, 2010

Mark Twain Effect

In some stock markets, the Mark Twain effect is the phenomenon of stock returns in October being lower than in other months. The name comes from the following quotation in Mark Twain’s Pudd’nhead Wilson: ‘October. This is one of the peculiarly dangerous months to speculate in stocks. The others are July, January, September, April, November, May, March, June, December, August, and February.’

The 1929, 1987 and 2008 stock market crashes roughly occurred in October.

July 11, 2010

Succotash

succotash

Succotash is an Algonquin word for a dish of boiled corn and lima beans.  Because of the relatively inexpensive and more readily available ingredients, the dish was popular during the Great Depression in the United States. It was sometimes cooked in a casserole form, often with a light pie crust on top as in a traditional pot pie. Succotash is a traditional dish of many Thanksgiving celebrations in New England as well as in Pennsylvania and other states. In some parts of the American South, any mixture of vegetables prepared with lima beans and topped with lard or butter is called succotash.

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July 11, 2010

Khat

khat

Qat, or khat [kaht] is a flowering plant native to tropical East Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Qat contains an alkaloid called cathinone, an amphetamine-like stimulant stimulates the release of dopamine and can cause excitement, loss of appetite and euphoria.

In 1980 the World Health Organization classified qat as a drug of abuse that can produce mild to moderate psychological dependence. It is a controlled or illegal substance in many countries, but has been grown for use as a stimulant for centuries in the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. There, chewing qat predates the use of coffee and is used in a similar social context.

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July 11, 2010

PF Flyers

pf flyer

PF Flyers are a brand of athletic shoes first produced by BF Goodrich in 1937.

New Balance bought the rights to the brand in 2001 (which had been dormant) and resurrected it in 2003. They are very similar to Chuck Taylor All-Stars, which were first manufactured by Converse in 1917.

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July 11, 2010

Specified Risk Material

srm

Specified risk material is tissues of ruminant animals that cannot be inspected and passed for human food because they contain high concentrations of prions (proteinaceous infectious particle, an infectious agent composed primarily of protein), which cause mad cow and other diseases. These tissues include brains, eyes, spinal cord, and other organs, but the exact definition varies by jurisdiction.

July 11, 2010

Mechanically Separated Meat

wyngz

slim jim

Mechanically separated meat also known as mechanically recovered/reclaimed meat, is a paste-like meat product produced by forcing beef, pork, turkey or chicken bones, with attached edible meat, under high pressure through a sieve or similar device to separate the bone from the edible meat tissue.

Mechanically separated meat has been used in certain meat and meat products since the late 1960s, particularly in hot dogs. This product can be contrasted with meat extracted by advanced meat recovery systems, a newer method that shaves the last traces of meat from bone.

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July 11, 2010

Baijiu

Baijiu is a Chinese liquor made from distilled sorghum, a tropical grass, or other grains. The name baijiu literally means ‘white liquor’ or ‘white spirit,’ and it is generally about 80 to 120 proof, or 40-60% alcohol by volume (ABV).  Because of its clarity, baijiu can appear similar to several other liquors, but generally has a significantly higher ABV than, for example, vodka (35-50%), Japanese shōchū (25%), or Korean soju (20-45%), and its flavour is distinctive and unique. In 2008 baijiu was the world’s most consumed spirit, with annual sales of 520 million 9-liter cases compared to vodka with 497 million 9-liter cases.

Wuliangye is the most popular brand, followed by Maotai.