Archive for February 9th, 2011

February 9, 2011

Patricia Piccinini

strength of one arm

Patricia Piccinini (born in 1965 in Freetown, Sierra Leone) is an Australian artist and hyperrealist sculptor. Her art work came to prominence in Australia in the late 1990s.

Her major artworks often reflect her interests in issues such as bioethics, biotechnologies and the environment. Other Australian artists who work in a similar idiom are Martine Corompt, Sam Jinks and Ron Mueck.

February 9, 2011

Casio F91W

The Casio F91W is an inexpensive quartz digital watch, manufactured by the Japanese firm Casio Computer Co., Ltd.. It was introduced in 1991. This watch is widely available throughout the world. It is widely noticeable due to its classic Casio shape. Prices vary, normally in the $7.50 – $15 range. United States intelligence officials have identified the F91W as a watch that terrorists often use when constructing time bombs.

February 9, 2011

Junior Idol


In Japan, a junior idol is a child or early teenager pursuing a career in glamour modeling (called gravure modeling in Japan) or pornography. However, child actors, musicians, and J-pop singers (whose musical genre is often termed idol pop) can also be considered junior idols. The primary divisions are divided by years U-18, U-15, and U-12, but there are also more recent partitions designated as U-10, U-6, and U-3 to reflect changes in the marketplace and idol fan communities.

Japan, which has long been relatively tolerant of the open sale and consumption of sexually oriented material, has developed a brisk trade in works that in many other countries might be considered child pornography. Recently however, public officials are moving to place tighter restrictions on the provocative depictions of young girls that are prevalent in magazines, DVDs and online.

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February 9, 2011

St. Matthew Island

st matthew island

St. Matthew Island is a remote island in the Bering Sea in Alaska. The island has a land area of 138 sq mi, making it the 43rd largest island in the United States. In 1944, 29 reindeer were introduced to the island by the United States Coast Guard to provide an emergency food source. The coast guard abandoned the island a few years later, leaving the reindeer. Subsequently, the reindeer population rose to about 6,000 by 1963 and then died off in the next two years to 43 animals.

A scientific study attributed the population crash to the limited food supply in interaction with climatic factors (the winter of 1963-64 was exceptionally severe in the region). By the 1980s, the reindeer population had completely died out. American ecologist, Garrett Hardin cited the ‘natural experiment’ of St. Matthew Island of the reindeer population explosion and collapse as a paradigmatic example of the consequences of overpopulation.

February 9, 2011

Between Two Ferns

between two ferns

Between Two Ferns With Zach Galifianakis is an interview series on Funny or Die hosted by Zach Galifianakis. Zach conducts interviews with popular celebrities between two potted ferns. The show is filmed to resemble a low-budget amateur production fit for public access television. He maintains an awkward and sometimes antagonistic demeanor with his guests, asking them bizarre and inappropriate questions mixed with off-handed non sequiturs.

February 9, 2011

Nuclear Football

nuke case

The Nuclear Football (also called ‘The Button’) is a black briefcase, the contents of which are to be used by the President of the United States of America to authorize a nuclear attack while away from fixed command centers, such as the White House Situation Room. It functions as a mobile hub in the strategic defense system. Russia and the United Kingdom have similar briefcases. Reputedly, there are four things in the Football: the ‘Black Book’ containing the retaliatory options, a book listing classified site locations, a manila folder with eight or ten pages stapled together giving a description of procedures for the Emergency Broadcast System, and a three-by-five inch card with authentication codes.

The ‘Black Book’ is 9 by 12 inches and has 75 loose-leaf pages printed in black and red. On the ‘vital’ page listing possible responses to a nuclear attack, retaliatory options appear in red and were labeled: ‘Rare, Medium or Well Done.’ The book with classified site locations was about the same size as the Black Book, and was black. It contained information on sites around the country where the president could be taken in an emergency.

February 9, 2011

Bat Phone

bat phone

A bat phone, in business jargon, is a private telephone number that is handled at a higher priority than a public line. The name derives from Commissioner Gordon’s secure line to the ‘Batphone’ in the Batman television show of 1966–68. Bat phones are common in many industries. The phone numbers are typically given to key customers so that they may reach important individuals in case of emergencies or critical situations. Bat phones can also provide direct access to politicians or notable people.

Another example of their use is for Internet service providers offering a selection of Internet services that range from dial-up access to secure web server hosting. Customers using the secure web hosting facility would be given access to a 24-hour bat phone for prompt resolution of technical issues, while dialup customers seeking technical support would be required to wait on hold and/or call only during business hours.