Archive for September 22nd, 2011

September 22, 2011


michelada by Peter Frank Edwards

Michelada [mee-cha-lah-dah] is a cerveza preparada, a Mexican term for beer mixed with tomato juice, hot sauce, or salsa. In English-speaking countries, it would be considered a variety of shandy (a beer mixed with soda, carbonated lemonade, or cider. The Michelada is made with beer, tomato juice (or Clamato), lime juice, and assorted sauces, spices, and peppers. It is served in a chilled, salt-rimmed glass.

In Mexico, Micheladas are considered a good remedy for hangovers.There are different types of variations of Micheladas; for example in Mexico City, the most common form of a Michelada is prepared with beer, lime, salt, and hot sauce/or chili. Some add slices of orange.

read more »

September 22, 2011

Mike Murdock

mike murdock by mark thomas

Michael Murdock (b. 1946) is a televangelist and pastor of the Wisdom Center ministry based in Fort Worth, Texas. His father, J.E. Murdock, is also a pastor. Murdock was educated in LaGrange High School in Lake Charles, and in Southwestern Assemblies of God University in Waxahachie for three semesters. He received an honorary doctorate from International Seminary in Florida which is not accredited. Murdock preaches around the world and is best known for his promotion of prosperity theology, whose claim the Bible teaches that financial blessing is the will of God for Christians.

He often preaches with Benny Hinn and has also preached with Tammy Faye Bakker. Additionally, he hosts the Wisdom Keys with Mike Murdock television program. Mike Murdock preached his first public sermon at the age of eight and began full-time evangelism at the age of 19. Murdock receives hundreds of invitations to speak in churches, colleges, and business corporations. He has a weekly television program, Wisdom Keys with Mike Murdock. Murdock is a Founding Trustee on the Board of International Charismatic Ministries along with the late Dr. Oral Roberts.

read more »

September 22, 2011



Nymwars is the name given to the conflicts over policies mandating that users of internet service identify using real names. They began in the summer of 2011 when nascent social networking site Google+ began enforcing such a policy by suspending the accounts of users it deemed in breach. Pseudonyms, nicknames, and non-standard real names (for example, mononyms or names that include scripts from multiple languages) have all been blocked.

The term was coined from ‘pseudonym’ and appears to have gained prominence as the hashtag ‘#nymwars’ on Twitter. The resulting discussions has raised many issues regarding naming, cultural sensitivity, public and private identity, and the role of social media in modern discourse. At the time of launch, the site’s user content and conduct policy stated, ‘To help fight spam and prevent fake profiles, use the name your friends, family or co-workers usually call you.’

read more »

September 22, 2011



Cleverbot is an artificial intelligence (AI) web application that learns how to mimic human conversations by communicating with humans. It was created by AI scientist Rollo Carpenter, who also created Jabberwacky, a similar web application. In the first decade of its existence after being created in 1988, Cleverbot held several thousand conversations with Carpenter and his associates. Since being launched on the web in 1997, the number of conversations has exceeded 65 million. Cleverbot, a learning Artificial Intelligence conversationalist, took part alongside humans in a formal Turing Test at the Techniche 2011 festival at IIT Guwahati, India. Cleverbot was judged to be 59.3% human, far exceeding expectations. The humans in the event achieved just 63.3%.

Cleverbot differs from traditional chatterbots in that the user is not holding a conversation with a bot that directly responds to entered text. Instead, when the user enters text, the algorithm selects previously entered phrases from its database of prior conversations. It has been claimed that ‘talking to Cleverbot is a little like talking with the collective community of the Internet.’

September 22, 2011

Jolly Roger

hello jolly roger by Nathan Cozzitorto

The Jolly Roger is any of various flags flown to identify a ship’s crew as pirates. The flag most usually identified as the Jolly Roger today is the skull and crossbones, a flag consisting of a human skull above two long bones set in an x-mark arrangement on a black field. This design was used by several pirates, including Captains Edward England and John Taylor. Some Jolly Roger flags also include an hourglass, another common symbol representing death in 17th- and 18th-century Europe. Despite its prominence in popular culture, plain black flags were often employed by most pirates of that era. Historically, the flag was flown to frighten pirates’ victims into surrendering without a fight, since it conveyed the message that the attackers were outlaws who would not consider themselves bound by the usual rules of engagement—and might, therefore, slaughter those they defeated (since captured pirates were usually hanged, they did not have much to gain by asking quarter if defeated). The same message was sometimes conveyed by a red flag.

It is assumed by most that the name Jolly Roger comes from the French words jolie rouge, meaning ‘pretty red’ and referring to a plain red flag which was flown to indicate that the ship would fight to the death, with no quarter given or expected. During the Elizabethan era ‘Roger’ was a slang term for beggars and vagrants who ‘pretended scholarship.’ ‘Sea Beggars’ had been a popular name for Dutch privateers since the 16th century. Another theory states that Jolly Roger is an English corruption of Ali Raja, supposedly a 17th century Tamil pirate. Yet another theory is that it was taken from a nickname for the devil, ‘Old Roger.’ The ‘jolly’ appellation may be derived from the apparent grin of a skull.