Tidbits on January 20, 2006
Bob Jensen
at Trinity University 

Winds shift west and the temperature drops 15 degrees. Rain changes to snow and the wind, as it is want to do, cranks. We peak at 120mph on the fourth straight day with winds exceeding 100mph. Wednesday night: Icing is extremely thick and requires constant attention. One of the wind instruments has been overwhelmed and needs to be lashed in place so that it doesn't spin itself to death under the heavy ice load. Trying to work with a rope on the top of the tower in 100 mph winds is tough; the lose ends tear across my face like a whip. The knots aren't pretty to look at but the ice will hold them in place for the time being.
Neil Lareau - Observer on the summit of Mt Washington, January 19, 2006 --- http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/index.php
Erika says the winds 4,500 feet lower where we live were nearly half that strong.  The entire White Mountain Region lost power for parts of the day.  Cannon Mountain in front of our cottage was closed to skiers due to dangerous winds.  Often the winds on Mt. Washington exceed 150 mph, but they are usually not more than about 35 mph where we live.  It's been a crazy year for weather with driving blizzards one day and driving rain the next --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/NHcottage/NHcottage.htm
Meanwhile for me here in Texas its a balmy 72 degrees and no serious rain in months.  I'm no dummy!

Actually, in comparison with Denali, Mt. Washington temperatures are balmy.  Check out Nova's new PBS show entitled "Deadly Ascent" at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/
You will never find me on North America's highest mountain.


Fraud Updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm
For earlier editions of New Bookmarks go to http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm 
Archives of Tidbits: Tidbits Directory --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm

Bob Jensen's various threads --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/threads.htm
       (Also scroll down to the table at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ )

Click here to search Bob Jensen's web site if you have key words to enter --- Search Site.
For example if you want to know what Jensen documents have the term "Enron" enter the phrase Jensen AND Enron. Another search engine that covers Trinity and other universities is at http://www.searchedu.com/.

I really like the Digital Duo show that appears weekly once again on PBS.  I found that you can bring up prior shows (video) on your computer by going to http://www.pcworld.com/digitalduo/index/0,00.asp

Bob Jensen's home page is at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/

Security threats and hoaxes --- http://www.trinity.edu/its/virus/

25 Hottest Urban Legends (hoaxes) --- http://www.snopes.com/info/top25uls.asp 

Stay up on the latest and the oldest hoaxes --- http://www.snopes.com/


Online Video
In the past I've provided links to various types of music and video available free on the Web. 
I created a page that summarizes those various links --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/music.htm

History: Public Information Films --- http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/films/

Flying Fish of Rio Guapore --- http://www.fazed.org/video/view/?id=138

Latest Jon Stewart Videos --- http://www.comedycentral.com/shows/the_daily_show/videos/most_recent/index.jhtml

Latest David Letterman Videos --- http://www.cbs.com/latenight/lateshow/


Free music downloads --- --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/music.htm

In the past I've provided links to various types of music and video available free on the Web. 
I created a page that summarizes those various links --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/music.htm

From The British Library --- http://www.bl.uk/onlinegallery/ttp/ttpbooks.html
Read "And Now for a Little Mozart" --- http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,70007-0.html?tw=wn_tophead_6
(75 Musical Excerpts)

The Mozart Project (has some nice downloads) --- http://www.mozartproject.org/compositions/k_626__.html

Virginia's Heritage Music Trail
Going Down the Crooked Road
--- http://www.roanoke.com/multimedia/crooked/franklin.html

From NPR
Cherryholmes: A Bluegrass Family Affair --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5156852
(Scroll down for the samples.)

From NPR
Billy Childs and the Lush Jazz of 'Lyric'
--- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5156713
(Scroll down for the samples.)

From NPR
Samples from a new Burt Bacharach Collection --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5056125
(Scroll down for the samples.)

From NPR
Duranguense: Mexico Meets the Midwest --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5156569
(Scroll down for the samples.)

From NPR
Suphala, Savoring the Beat of a Different Drum --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5133803
(Scroll down for the samples.)

From NPR
Techno Fusion from Balkan Beat Box
--- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5156870
(Scroll down for the samples.)

IMPORTANT (jazz and folk) FIRSTS, GROUPS AND THEIR LEADERS --- http://www.jazzinamerica.org/l_important.asp
 


Photographs and Art

Impressionist Dance Lesson --- http://www.nga.gov/feature/artnation/degas/

Terry Button Wildlife Photography --- http://www.terrybutton.com/

Petra:  Lost City of Stone --- http://www.amnh.org/exhibitions/petra/

Portraits by Carl Van Vechten http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/collections/vanvechten/

Infrared Dream Photography --- http://www.shutterdream.com/

Ballpoint Pen Art --- http://www.davearchambault.com/portfolio.shtml

OCAIW Centaro's Art Images on the Web --- http://www.ocaiw.com/

Child Labor in America (Photographs) --- http://www.historyplace.com/unitedstates/childlabor/
 


Online Books, Poems, References, and Other Literature
In the past I've provided links to various types electronic literature available free on the Web. 
I created a page that summarizes those various links --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm

Poetry Archive (with audio readings) ---  http://www.poetryarchive.org/poetryarchive/home.do

History of Costume
Fashion in Color --- 
http://ndm.si.edu/EXHIBITIONS/fashion_in_colors/

The History Channel (on cable TV) --- http://www.historychannel.com/thisday/

A Collection of WWII Letters To and From The Home Front --- http://www.private-art.com/

The Heritage of the Great War --- http://www.greatwar.nl/

Iraq's History Page --- http://www.angelfire.com/nt/Gilgamesh/history.html




Still Morning in America
Twenty-five years ago today, Ronald Reagan was inaugurated as the 40th President of the United States promising less intrusive government, lower tax rates and victory over communism. On that same day, the American hostages in Iran were freed after 444 days of captivity. If the story of history is one long and arduous march toward freedom, this was a momentous day well worth commemorating.

"Still Morning in America," The Wall Street Journal, January 20, 2005 --- http://www.opinionjournal.com/editorial/feature.html?id=110007843 
Also see http://www.humaneventsonline.com/article.php?id=11746

Still Morning at Apple Corporation
The dumbest words ever spoken by Michael Dell

"What would I do?" Mr. Dell said to an audience of several thousand information technology managers. "I'd shut it
(Apple Corporation) down and give the money back to the shareholders."
John Markoff, "Michael Dell Should Eat His Words, Apple Chief Suggests," The New York Times, January 16, 2006 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2006/01/16/technology/16apple.html
Jensen Comment
Dell spoke those words in 1997 when Steve Jobs returned to Apple Corporation to help revive the company.  The rest is iPod history.


At last it's revealed why it was a tough hurricane season in the United States
In his speech, Nagin
(Mayor of New Orleans) also said "God is mad at America," in part because he does not approve "of us being in Iraq under false pretenses. He is sending hurricane after hurricane after hurricane, and it is destroying and putting stress on this country," Nagin said.
"Nagin calls for rebuilding 'chocolate' New Orleans Black majority city 'the way God wants it to be'," CNN, January 17, 2006 --- http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/01/17/nagin.city/index.html
Jensen Question
But why was God kill so many more people, mostly Muslins, in Pakistan, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka?

Reasoning suggests that Willy Wonka might make a better mayor of New Orleans
"How do you make chocolate? You take dark chocolate, you mix it with white milk, and it becomes a delicious drink. That is the chocolate I am talking about," he said.

"Nagin calls for rebuilding 'chocolate' New Orleans Black majority city 'the way God wants it to be'," CNN, January 17, 2006 --- http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/01/17/nagin.city/index.html

Jon Stewart's "Donkey Show"
Normally I'm not a big fan of Jon Stewart, but I left The Daily Show on tonight while I worked on a couple of other tasks. Stewart reviewed the pandering done by Hillary Clinton and Ray Nagin yesterday, as well as the shoutdown Nancy Pelosi received on Saturday when she (rationally) suggested to her constituency that their concerns on the war would best be addressed electorally in 2006 during a visit to San Francisco. At the end of the segment, titled "Donkey Show", Stewart noted this: So the Democratic platform appears to be ... Democrats are our government's slaves [Hillary added to graphic] ... New Orleans can't be rebuilt without Willy Wonka [Nagin added to graphic] ... and voting
(to surrender in Iraq) is for pussies [Pelosi added to graphic]. Good luck in 2006, everybody!
Captain Ed, Captain's Quarters, January 16, 2006 --- http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/archives/006173.php 
Jensen Comment
Latest Jon Stewart Videos --- http://www.comedycentral.com/shows/the_daily_show/videos/most_recent/index.jhtml
Jon Stewart Comedy Central Homepage --- http://www.comedycentral.com/shows/the_daily_show/index.jhtml
Jon Stewart Intelligence Page --- http://www.jonstewart.net/


Why can't we be thrown into jail?  Where are our rights?
Lately, they've found something new and surprising to protest. They're objecting to a new city ordinance that lessens the charge they normally face when arrested: trespassing. Now, it's a petty misdemeanor. "It's impossible to get into jail," fumed protester David Harris, a 71-year-old surgeon from Red Wing, who fulfilled his court-ordered penalty from a previous trespassing conviction by publicly holding a sign that said simply, "Community Service."
Kevin Gilles, "Edina: Weapons protesters get a break they don't want," Star Tribune, January 17, 2006 --- http://www.startribune.com/462/story/186967.html


The real science and its literature
Science from the frontiers of knowledge, on the other hand, is wild, untamed and often either wrong or irrelevant to future research. A few years after they are published, most scientific papers are never cited again. Scientific journals try to impose order on the turbulent flow of new claims by having expert reviewers assess their merit. But even at the best journals, reviewers provide only a rough screen. Many papers slip through that later turn out to be innocently wrong. A few, like Dr. Hwang's, are found to be fraudulent.

Nicholas Wade, "Lowering Expectations at Science's Frontier," The New York Times, January 15, 2006 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2006/01/15/weekinreview/15wade.html


"Starving, Bandaged bin Laden Offers U.S. One Last Chance to Surrender"--headline, Onion http://www.theonion.com/content/node/27999 , Dec. 12, 2001

"Bin Laden Warns of Attacks, Offers Truce"--headline, Associated Press http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060119/ap_on_re_mi_ea/al_qaida_bin_laden , Jan. 19, 2006


There is nothing patriotic about hating your country, or pretending that you can love your country but despise your government. There is nothing heroic about turning your back on America, or ignoring your own responsibilities.
Bill Clinton --- http://www.clintonfoundation.org/legacy/050595-speech-by-president-at-michigan-state.htm 


The senators put on a media show, but they ended up showing more than they intended
Few of the senators, if any, sat in the hearing room as long as Alito did. The senators were sitting in judgment of the judge. How would you feel if the judge hearing your case left the room every so often, popping in and out of the courtroom, while you and the witnesses were testifying in your case?
Chuck Green, "Kennedy antics bring discredit to Alito hearings," Pueblo Chieftain, January 15, 2006 --- http://www.chieftain.com/editorial/1137337207/7
Also see http://www.townhall.com/opinion/columns/BurtPrelutsky/2006/01/16/182455.html

Forwarded by Dick Haar

Is it the NFL or is it the NBA? It Must Be The NBA?? ?

36 have been accused of spousal abuse

7 have been arrested for fraud

19 have been accused of writing bad checks

117 have directly or indirectly bankrupted at least 2 businesses

3 have done time for assault

71, repeat, 71, cannot get a credit card due to bad credit

14 have been arrested on drug-related charges

8 have been arrested for shoplifting

21 currently are defendants in lawsuits. and

84 have been arrested for drunk driving in the last year

Can you guess which organization this is?

Give up yet? . . .

Actually it's neither the NFL or the NBA.

It's the 535 members of the United States Congress.

This is the group of thieves that cranks out hundreds of new laws each year designed to keep the rest of us in line. It will be a side show to watch them squirm out of serious lobbying and campaign reform.  They will put on a grand show of reform for the media, but in the end they will cleverly design in new ways to keep the graft among the "only true criminal class in America."

Locate Members of Congress --- http://members.aol.com/BCLEGIS/contact.htm




Teaching evaluations may soon become pubic information at a leading private university
A proposal at Northwestern University to make all evaluations available may go before the Faculty Senate soon, and it is attracting both praise and criticism. The debate comes amid the growing popularity of professorial reviews on Web sites that have no ties to universities — and, critics charge, no quality control.
David Epstein, "For All to See," Inside Higher Ed, January 20, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/01/20/evals
Jensen Comment
I'm opposed to this because empirical studies shows that letting deans and key committees (e.g., Promotion and Tenure Committees) see teaching evaluations in the past is a major cause of grade inflation --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/assess.htm#GradeInflation

Colleges should resist the movement to quantify everything they do.
Edward F. Palm, "No Professor Left Behind," Inside Higher Ed, January 20, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2006/01/20/palm


Two Takes on Teaching
Paula M. Krebs has been a professor of English at Wheaton College, a selective New England liberal arts college, for 15 years, since earning her Ph.D. at Indiana University. Her sister Mary Krebs Flaherty has been an administrative assistant at Rutgers University’s Camden campus for a year longer than Paula has been at Wheaton. Last fall Mary taught her first course, Basic Writing Skills III, on the inner-city, campus of a two-year college, Camden County College. She teaches on her lunch break from her job at Rutgers. Mary has been taking evening classes toward her M.A. for three years, ever since she finished her B.A. at Rutgers via the same part-time route. This article is the first in a series in which Paula and Mary will discuss what it’s like to teach English at their respective institutions.
 
Paula M. Krebs and Mary Krebs Flaherty, "Two Takes on Teaching," Inside Higher Ed, January 13, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2006/01/13/krebs


Question
Why do colleges give scholarships to students who can afford the tuition?

Answer
It often boils down to money. If they are top students they might still go to a college that honors them with a scholarship.  By not awarding a partial scholarship, the college loses the difference that will be paid in cash by the student.

Colleges, especially private institutions, are giving more aid to wealthy students, according to an analysis published on the Education Sector Web site. The trend, noted with concern by aid experts for several years, generally reflects a strategy for recruiting students who — even with the aid they pay — bring substantial tuition revenue to colleges.
Inside Higher Ed, January 20, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/01/20/qt


How to find a good scientist or other expert of "human knowledge"
"A Universe of Good Intentions: A World of Practical Hurdles, by Leslie Walker, The Washington Post, January 18, 2006 --- http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/18/AR2006011802251.html?referrer=email

A group of scientists, academics and nonprofit groups is making its attempt with a new Internet directory it calls the Digital Universe. The group's goal is to provide information vetted by experts on all major topics of human knowledge in a new format allowing people to browse it in a more visual way.

"We hope to create the world's largest repository of credible information over the next several years, if not decades,'' says Bernard Haisch, the astrophysicist and former NASA researcher who is president of the nonprofit Digital Universe Foundation.

Rarely do I write about projects that I think are likely to fail -- and this one seems to have the odds stacked against it, judging by my initial tests of its software. But the project is worth spotlighting because it shows how smart people keep trying to make the Web a friendlier place, in part by devising alternatives to search engines.

Released in pilot form Monday, this new directory ( http://www.digitaluniverse.net  ) aims to collect the best of the Web in one spot. It differs from other search engines and directories in two key ways -- by rejecting advertising and by putting its content under the editorial control of a self-organizing network of experts.

Digital Universe also differs from text-based directories such as Yahoo by putting a visual overlay on top of its Web links. The solar-system home page, for example, starts with a 3-D picture of space as seen from inside a spaceship, then lets people click on a console to fly through a virtual solar system and explore the planets. Think of it as a visual Wikipedia (the open Web encyclopedia allowing anyone to add or change an entry) with tighter editorial controls and a special browser relying on graphics for navigation.

For now, anyone wanting to visit the Digital Universe must download and install a modified version of the open-source Mozilla browser (which also powers the Firefox browser). But the creators say they are retooling the directory so people will be able to access it from any Web browser.

The project's mastermind is Joseph Firmage, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur who made millions founding two successful software companies (Serius Corp. and USWeb Corp.) during the dot-com boom era but drew public ridicule after he publicly professed his belief that extraterrestrials had visited Earth.

While he still believes in visitors from outer space, Firmage says those ideas are not a focus of his life today -- and have nothing to do with the Digital Universe project he's been working on for five years. He recruited a large team of reputable scientists and academics to flesh out what is basically a multimedia encyclopedia. He also devised a structure that requires him to be hands-off regarding its content.

"I am building the infrastructure for the Digital Universe, but the contributors of it are the scientists,'' Firmage said.

Continued in article

Once again, the Digital Universe is at  http://www.digitaluniverse.net  


People and Business Finders (including yellow pages)

How to find people, places, and databases --- http://www.melissadata.com/Lookups/

Yahoo People Locator --- http://people.yahoo.com/ 

Amazon Elbows Into Online Yellow Pages Hiking the stakes in this hot field, the new service from its A9 unit features photo-rich listings that let you wander around near a destination
January 28, 2005 message from BusinessWeek Online's Insider [BW_Insider@newsletters.businessweek.com
The A9.com home page is at http://a9.com/?c=1&src=a9 

People Search Engine
Amazon.com Inc.'s A9.com search engine has incorporated Zoom Information Inc.'s index of businesspeople as the default source for people information, the companies said Tuesday. The ZoomInfo service can be accessed by selecting the "people" box on the A9.com homepage. ZoomInfo provides summaries describing the person's work history, education and accomplishments. ZoomInfo also allows registered users to monitor and manage their own summaries. "ZoomInfo has collected and organized hundreds of millions of random bits of information about people from across the Web," Florian Brody, director of marketing for A9.com, said in a statement. "This information is useful in lots of different ways, which we are excited to make it available for our users on A9.com." Zoom's search technology scans millions of Web sites, press releases, electronic news services, Securities and Exchange Commission filings and other online sources; and then summarizes the information, the Waltham, Mass., company said.
Antone Gonsalves, "Through a new deal with Zoom Information, Amazon.com's A9 search engine provides free summaries describing a person's work history, education, and accomplishments," Information Week, January 17, 2006 --- http://www.informationweek.com/news/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=177101278

The A9 search engine is at http://a9.com/-/home.jsp?nc=1

How to find lawyers and accountants --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/fees.htm

Yellow Pages
Enter "Yellow Pages" at http://www.google.com/advanced_search?hl=en

Excite Home

Digital Duo Review --- http://www.digitalduo.com/407_dig.html 

Yahoo! People Search

Classmates.com

Lycos' WhoWhere

KnowX.com

USSEARCH.com

411.com

 
Database Searching For People
Searching For E-Mail Addresses
Searching For Government Offices & Officials
Searching For Home Pages
Searching For People, Addresses, & Phone Numbers
Reverse LookUp Searching

Search for People and Missing Persons

Child Search Start Page
FamilySearch - from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:  http://www.familysearch.org/
Locate Members of Congress --- http://members.aol.com/BCLEGIS/contact.htm
P.D.I. Investigations
Yahoo Links to Missing Persons --- http://people.yahoo.com/ 

Public Records and Missing Persons Search  --- http://searchenginez.com/public_records.html  

Bob Jensen's search helpers are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/searchh.htm


"Is Your Computer Killing You? Ten ways that the computer can hurt your body, mind, and the environment, and what you can do to minimize the damage," by Lee Hamrick InformationWeek, January 19, 2006 --- http://www.informationweek.com/story/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=177101554 


How does the Vatican stand on this new device for birth control?
A study by an Italian sexologist has found that couples who have a TV set in their bedroom have sex half as often as those who don't. "If there's no television in the bedroom, the frequency (of sexual intercourse) doubles," said Serenella Salomoni whose team of psychologists questioned 523 Italian couples to see what effect television had on their sex lives. On average, Italians who live without TV in the bedroom have sex twice a week, or eight times a month. This drops to an average of four times a month for those with a TV, the study found.
"TV in the bedroom halves your sex life - study," Yahoo News, January 16, 2006 --- http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060116/od_nm/sex_tv_dc
Jensen Comment
If couples cannot agree on what shows to watch, it really helps birth control to have separate bedrooms with separate TV sets.

Correlation is not causation
But correlation does not necessarily imply causation. It may be that people with humdrum sex lives need something to do in the bedroom, so they get a TV set. Or perhaps there is a complex web of cause and effect: As people get older, their sex drives diminish, while at the same time their wealth expands, so they can afford more consumer electronics.

Carol Muller, Opinion Journal, January 17, 2006
Jensen Comment
The kid hides Playboy under the mattress while his poppa hides an iPod under the pillow in the next room.  All this while momma is watching the Italian equivalent of the Leno and Letterman shows.

Here's what happened (in Ireland) long before television and pubs were invented
The scientists, from Trinity College Dublin, have discovered that as many as one in twelve Irish men could be descended from Niall of the Nine Hostages, a 5th-century warlord who was head of the most powerful dynasty in ancient Ireland. His genetic legacy is almost as impressive as Genghis Khan, the Mongol emperor who conquered most of Asia in the 13th century and has nearly 16 million descendants, said Dan Bradley, who supervised the research. "It's another link between profligacy and power," Bradley said. "We're the first generation on the planet where if you're successful you don't (always) have more children."
"Scientists discover most fertile Irish male," Sify News, January 18, 2006 --- http://snipurl.com/FertileMale
Jensen Comment
It is also rumored that a lot of Texas Aggies can be traced back to a black sheep in the family.


The Playboy Bunny --- Literally
British scientists are seeking permission to create hybrid embryos in the lab by fusing human cells with rabbit eggs. If granted consent, the team will use the embryos to produce stem cells that carry genetic defects, in the hope that studying them will help understand the complex mechanisms behind incurable human diseases.
"Stem cell experts seek rabbit-human embryo," PhysOrg, January 13, 2006 --- http://weblog.physorg.com/news4436.html


"Protests Put Netflix Settlement On Hold," by Caroline E. Mayer, The Washington Post, January 18, 2006; Page D01--- http://snipurl.com/NetFlixSettlement

A proposed class-action settlement involving Netflix customers may be rewritten in response to complaints that the agreement does little for consumers while rewarding the company and the lawyers who filed the suit.

A hearing over the $4 million settlement had been scheduled in California Superior Court today but was postponed for a month.

Plaintiff attorneys, who were slated to receive $2.5 million in the proposed settlement, said the delay enables both sides to review more than 50 objections, including one by the Federal Trade Commission and another by the Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, a national public-interest law firm. Netflix Inc. declined to comment on the delay.

In the past few years, both the FTC and the trial lawyers group have been actively protesting class-action settlements that bring little value to consumers, usually coupons with little monetary value, but pay off handsomely for lawyers.

The settlement stems from a September 2004 lawsuit on behalf of more than 6 million former and current customers. The lawsuit accused Netflix of misleading consumers by promising DVD delivery within one business day after an order was processed. In reality, the lawsuit said, it would often take as long as four to six business days for customers to receive requested DVDs. That meant customers could watch fewer videos than promised under Netflix's monthly membership plans, which allow customers to have only a certain number of DVDs checked out at one time. The most popular plan, at $17.99 a month, allows customers to check out three DVDs at a time. Once a DVD is returned by post-paid mail, Netflix sends out a new one.

The lawsuit also alleged that customers who were heavy users, those who viewed and returned their movies quickly, received lower delivery priority.

Continued in article


Big Student is Watching Your Every Move

"The New Class Monitors," by Scott Jaschik, Inside Higher Ed, January 18, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/01/18/ucla

In a move that some professors see as a new low in efforts to monitor their classroom activities, a conservative group is offering students at the University of California at Los Angeles money to tape lectures and turn over materials distributed by professors.

While several conservative groups invite students at various colleges to file reports about professors, these students have not been paid. Faculty members at UCLA said that the pay may violate the intellectual property rights of professors — and that the tactic is an attempt to intimidate scholars.

“Paying students to inform on professors is right out of the Stalinist playbook,” said John McCumber, a professor of Germanic languages at UCLA who is among the faculty members who have already been criticized on UCLAprofs.com, the Web site offering to pay for reports on faculty members.

The Web site is a project of the Bruin Alumni Association, which is working to encourage alumni of UCLA to hold back their donations to protest the actions of liberal professors. The association has been working for several months — sending thousands of booklets to UCLA alumni and compiling a list of the “Dirty Thirty,” those professors it finds most objectionable. Scholars at the top of the list earn five power fists in the group’s ranking system.

While there are similar groups of conservative alumni at other campuses, the offers to pay students — which started less than a week ago — sets this effort apart and worries experts on academic freedom.

“Asking students to spy is utterly repugnant,” said Jonathan Knight, director of the Department of Academic Freedom and Governance at the American Association of University Professors. “It’s hard to conceive of a practice more unlikely to obtain accurate, useful, reliable information about what happens in a classroom than having to pay students for the information.”

Andrew Jones, founder and president of the Bruin Alumni Association, said that his approach to paying students would protect professors from false information. “I felt we needed to professionalize the process” of gathering information about classroom presentations, he said. Too many reports about professors who focus on political issues rather than their course subjects “end up in a lot of he said, she said,” but having “solid evidence” will prevent that, Jones said.

“If we are going to be making accusations of professional malfeasance, then I wanted to have real solid independent proof,” he said.

Continued in article


Stem cell research:  spinal cord injury patients could see potential treatments by the year's end.
A scathing report on stem-cell researcher Hwang Woo-suk is depressing indeed, particularly for patients he promised to treat. But as badly as 2006 began, spinal cord injury patients could see potential treatments by the year's end.
Steven Edwards, "The State of Stem Cells, 2006," Wired News, January 2006 --- http://www.wired.com/news/technology/medtech/0,70004-0.html?tw=wn_tophead_13


"New Anti-Blindness Drug:  A new drug heading for approval dramatically improves sight in macular degeneration patients,"  by Kevin Bullis, MIT's Technology Review, January 13, 2006 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/NanoTech/wtr_16145,319,p1.html


"Software to Help You Download From iPods, Share iTunes on 1 PC," by Walter Mossberg, The Wall Street Journal, January 12, 2006; Page B1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/personal_technology.html

This week, Apple Computer announced that it sold a staggering 14 million iPod music players over the recently ended holiday quarter -- more than 100 every minute. But as popular and well-designed as the iPod is, it's not perfect. There are a couple of aspects of the way it works, or doesn't work, that are becoming increasingly annoying as people acquire both more iPods and more computers.

First, you cannot use an iPod, out of the box, to copy your music collection to multiple computers you may own. Millions of iPod owners have more than one computer, and it's perfectly legal to copy the music you own to more than one computer. But the iPod won't help you do this.

Second, in families with multiple iPods sharing a single computer, the iPod's companion software, iTunes, doesn't allow you to have multiple music libraries. With multiple libraries, each user could see only his or her own music, and could synchronize his or her iPod with that personal music library.

Apple is aware of these shortcomings, and I wouldn't be surprised to see it solve the second one, multiple libraries, this year. But the first, the inability to use the iPod to copy music to multiple computers, is tougher. Apple was forced to cripple the iPod in this manner at the insistence of the record labels, which feared that it might be used to copy music too widely. So a fix probably requires negotiations with the labels, whose obsession with piracy has caused them to treat their own customers like criminals.

Luckily, there are solutions to both problems available today, through third-party software or workarounds. Here's a guide to those solutions.

First, here's how to use an iPod to copy music to multiple computers. You just have to download and install one of a number of small utility programs designed specifically to let you copy the music on the iPod to a computer. There are lots of these, for both Windows and Macintosh computers.

For Windows users, I suggest CopyPod, available for $20 with a two-week free trial, at www.copypod.net. For Mac users, I like PodWorks, available for $8 with a limited-function 30-day free trial at www.scifihifi.com/podworks. Another, similar program, which comes in versions for both Windows and Mac, is PodUtil, available for £10 ($17.66), with an unlimited free trial, at www.kennettnet.co.uk.

Once you have installed one of these utilities on your second computer, just plug in your iPod, filled with the music from the first computer. When iTunes pops up, be sure to decline when the program asks if you want to synchronize your iPod to the second computer. If you don't decline, iTunes will wipe out your iPod's contents and replace it with any music on the second computer.

Next, quit iTunes and launch the music-copying utility, if it didn't launch automatically when you plugged in your iPod. It will scan your iPod, displaying all the music stored there, and allow you to copy some or all of the music onto the second computer. If you have a lot of music on the iPod, this could take awhile.

When you're done, just quit the utility program, disconnect the iPod, and relaunch iTunes. In some cases, the utility will already have populated iTunes with the copied music. In other cases, you'll have to use the "Add to Library" command in the iTunes File menu to bring in the music you have just copied.

How about the multiple-libraries problem? This one can be solved with some workarounds, as well as third-party software.

Continued in article



"Protecting Your Computer," The Wall Street Journal, January 12, 2006; Page B3 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/mossberg_mailbox.html

Q: An IT director for a local bank told me I didn't need ZoneAlarm since I was using a router which acted as a hardware firewall. What is your opinion?

A: Some routers -- the boxes that direct Internet traffic on a network -- do include hardware-based firewalls that can help protect computers from hackers and other intruders. But I believe that everyone should also use a software firewall like ZoneAlarm, because you can't be too careful where security is concerned. You should at least turn on the free, built-in firewall that comes with Windows or with the Macintosh.


Cool sunglasses that bring music to the ears
But there's another approach to getting rid of the wires: make the music player wearable. This week, we tested just such a product -- the Thump 2 from Oakley Inc., the same company known for its stylish and expensive sunglasses with the signature "O" imprinted near your temple. The Thump 2 is a pair of Oakley sunglasses with an MP3 player and earbuds built into its foldable arms, eliminating the messiness of dangling cords.
Walter S. Mossberg and Katherine Boehret, "Sunglasses That Bring Music to Your Ears: A Built-In MP3 Player Does Away With Wires But Is Costly, Impractical," by The Wall Street Journal, January 11, 2006; Page D4 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/the_mossberg_solution.html


The following article from Inside Higher Ed about role models in education is definitely not politically correct

"Martin Luther King vs. Role Model Nonsense," by Roger Clegg, Inside Higher Ed, January 19, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2006/01/19/clegg

One more example, that came across my desk as this piece was being edited: The Boston Globe ran an article about Randolph, Mass. headlined, “To reflect students, town woos minority teachers.” The school committee chairwoman was quoted: “It’s providing role models for the kids.”

It is understood that, in order to achieve this greater diversity, skin color and ethnicity will be considered in the recruitment and hiring process. And so, inevitably, some candidates will be given preferences, and others disfavored, because of these external characteristics. It cannot be denied: If race is given weight in the search, then you are no longer looking for the best candidate, regardless of race.

I’m amazed at the news stories because the role model justification for hiring preferences is so clearly (a) illegal and (b) bad policy.

The Supreme Court flatly rejected the role model rationale nearly 20 years ago, in Wygant v. Jackson Board of Education. A decade before that, in Hazelwood School District v. United States, the Court had similarly noted that a school district could not point to the racial makeup of its student body as a justification for the racial makeup of its faculty.

Don’t these schools have lawyers?

And, really, they shouldn’t even need a lawyer to tell them that the role model approach is wrong.

For starters, universities, colleges, and schools should ignore skin color and national origin and simply hire the best professors and teachers they can. Period. It’s hard enough to get competent teachers at any level without disqualifying some and preferring others because of irrelevant physical characteristics.

Show me a parent who would say, “I’m willing for my child to be taught by a less qualified teacher so long as he or she shares my child’s color.” As for research and writing, hiring anything less than the best qualified minds will inevitably compromise the school’s or college’s academic mission.

Second, it is ugly indeed to presuppose that one can admire — one can adopt as a role model — only someone who shares your skin color and, conversely, that a white child could never look up to a black person, or a black child to a white person, or either one to an Asian or Latino or American Indian. Does this also mean that men cannot admire women, or a Christians admire a Jew, or the able-bodied admire someone in a wheelchair?

When President Bush was asked who he wanted to grow up to be when he was a boy, he replied without hesitation, “Willie Mays.” And why not?

Third, the notion that our schoolteachers and professors must look like our students leads into some very undesirable corners.

As Justice Powell wrote in Wygant, “Carried to its logical extreme, the idea that black students are better off with black teachers could lead to the very system the Court rejected in Brown v. Board of Education.”

Just so.

And if you have a school district that is all-white, does that mean that it is all right to refuse to hire blacks? If you have a school district that has no Latino children, does that mean you should avoid hiring Hispanic teachers? And if your school district’s students are only 5 percent Asian, should that be your ceiling for Asian teachers?

Likewise, are Idaho universities entitled to avoid hiring African Americans, Maine colleges Latinos, and Nebraska schools Asians — to ensure that those states’ natives are not taught by someone who may not look like they do? Should Ruth Simmons have been disqualified as president of Brown University, on the grounds that she is an unsuitable role model for the white male students there?

Yes, sex will rear its ugly head, too.

Schoolteachers remain a disproportionately female profession, but students include as many boys as girls. Does that mean that schools ought to be granting a preference to men when they hire faculty?

The truth of the matter is that the “role model” claim is just another made-up excuse to engage in the politically correct discrimination that is so fashionable among so many of our so-called educators.

This discrimination is illegal, unfair, silly, and harmful. Whenever a school is distracted from looking for anyone other than the best possible teacher, it is in the end the students who will pay the price. Hire by content of character, not color of skin.


Question
What were the biggest flops in Hollywood?

Answer:  At "Last"
"The Disaster Was a Movie," Jonathan V. Last, The Wall Street Journal, January 13, 2006; Page W3 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113710671579345328.html?mod=todays_us_weekend_journal

The business of moviemaking follows an Inverse Anna Karenina Principle: Every successful movie is successful in its own way, but box-office failures are all alike. Which is to say that, if you look at the list of the biggest box-office winners of all time, you find movies that could not be more different: "Gone With the Wind," "Jaws," "The Graduate," "The Exorcist." But if you look at the list of Hollywood's biggest flops, painful commonalities abound.

James Robert Parish identifies them neatly in "Fiasco: A History of Hollywood's Iconic Flops." He gives a high-minded rationale for his project, saying that he hopes to explain why moviemakers "so often fail to recognize that their big-budgeted pictures are doomed from the start" and why they never seem able to learn "from the egregious mistakes of their predecessors." What Mr. Parish leaves unsaid, for propriety's sake, is that performing autopsies on disasters such as "Cleopatra" (1963), "Ishtar" (1987) and "Waterworld" (1995) is not only instructive but intensely pleasurable. Shameful joy aside, "Fiasco" promulgates a few simple rules on how not to make a movie.

Continued in article


Where's Albert Einstein when you need him?  (He once worked in a patent office.)
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is in a pretty tight spot. The entire office is buckling under the weight of more than 600,000 backlogged applications. Within the software office, the time from application to resolution is typically four years -- with the first replies from an examiner taking almost two years. For the technology industry, where product cycles routinely last only a few months, that's stultifying. Faced with this overload, the USPTO announced this week that it's exploring forward-looking partnerships with technology companies, such as IBM, Red Hat, Novell, and Google, to create three evaluation systems, being worked on concurrently, to both increase the quality of software patents and shorten the time it takes the office to either issue or decline a patent.
 Eric Hellweg, "The Patent Office's Fix Metatagging and social networks -- ideas that originated in personal online media -- may save the U.S. Patent Office," MIT's Technology Review, January 13, 2006 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/InfoTech/wtr_16146,300,p1.html

 


Apple finally wants to take on the PC
And while high-powered hardware is crucial, equally high-powered software is as well. Jobs also announced the company's upgraded software bundles for its do-it-yourself movie/music studio, iLife, and Apple's counterpart to Microsoft Office, iWork. The presentation itself was created using Keynote software in iWork, and Jobs displayed three-dimensional pie charts in this new version. For the most part, though, Jobs focused on iLife, spending more than a quarter of his presentation time demonstrating new features, such as "photocasting," a trick that allows friends and family to automatically receive updates of certain photos as soon as they're filed in iPhoto. Another addition is the podcasting studio within the application Garage Band, and iWeb, an application that easily publishes blogs, photos, videos, and podcasts to the Internet.
Kate Greene, "Mac's Faith-Based Initiative," MIT's Technology Review, January 13, 2006 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/InfoTech/wtr_16147,294,p1.html
 



 
Never tell your alumni or your current students that you want to raise the admission standards
The many critics of William E. Cooper are getting their wish, but not the timing they sought. He announced Thursday that he would leave the presidency of the University of Richmond in June 2007. Cooper has been on the defensive since October, when a comment he made in a campus speech struck many students and alumni as insulting. But beyond that comment, his agenda has struck many as elitist and unrealistic — and the controversy over the comment galvanized the opposition. The official announcement of Cooper’s departure made no mention of the recent controversies and quoted board leaders praising his goals, and Cooper noting how many of his plans had been accomplished.
Scott Jaschik, "Mush Ends a Presidency," Inside Higher Ed, January 13, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/01/13/richmond
 


"Military Women Can Hack It," Randy Dotinga, Wired News, January 13, 2006 --- http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,70006-0.html?tw=wn_tophead_1
Female soldiers have long fought off perceptions that their bodies just aren't equipped to handle the rigors of training and warfare. But a decade's worth of research suggests that women are hardly as fragile as critics once thought.

A new study by military researchers found that many assumptions about female bodies are "astoundingly wrong." Women are just as good as men -- in some cases, perhaps even better -- at handling intense exercise and decompression sickness.

The findings, reported in the Journal of Women's Health, don't change the fact that women -- on the whole -- are smaller and less powerful than men. Still, they suggest "that human physiology is more consistent than would be suggested by the social embellishments and exaggerations" that come about when there isn't any actual research, said Col. Karl Friedl, commander of the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine and co-author of the report (.pdf).


Navy Tests Look-to-Talk Device
The U.S. Navy is field-testing a new short-range communications device called LightSpeed that could soon let sailors talk securely up to two miles away -- just by looking at each other. The device uses infrared, similar to that of a television remote control, to transmit audio and visual information. To overcome range limits, LightSpeed connects to ordinary binoculars and uses the optical lenses to amplify the signals. Then soldiers on either end can simply plug headphones and a microphone into their binoculars to talk to one another.
Cyrus Farivar, "Navy Tests Look-to-Talk Device," Wired News, January 2006 --- http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,69996-0.html?tw=wn_tophead_17


What They Don’t Teach You in Graduate School — Part IV
In our first three lists of tips for an academic career, we covered finishing the dissertation and finding the first job, offered an overview of various academic responsibilities, and described career paths. In our final installment, we turn to life an academic.
"What They Don’t Teach You in Graduate School — Part IV," by David E. Drew and Paul Gray, Inside Higher Ed, January 13, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/workplace/2006/01/13/tips


Congratulations to Anton Armstrong
Anton Armstrong, director of the St. Olaf College Choir, has been named the 2006 recipient of the Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching — considered the most lucrative prize for college teaching. Armstrong will receive $200,000 and St. Olaf’s music department will receive $25,000. The award is sponsored by Baylor University.
Inside Higher Ed, January 13, 2006 ---
http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2006/01/13/qt

 


Europe:  The land of environmental protection hypocrites
Let's go to the latest numbers from the European Environment Agency in Copenhagen. Most European countries have seen an increase in greenhouse gas emissions since signing Kyoto with great fanfare in 1997. No fewer than 13 out of the 15 original EU signatories are on track to miss their 2010 emissions targets -- by as much as 33 percentage points, in the case of Spain. Or consider Denmark, home of the EU's environmental watchdog. Rather than reduce levels by 21% as the accord stipulates, Denmark has so far notched a 6.3% increase in emissions since 1990, the base year used in Kyoto. The likely gap between its Kyoto commitment and its emissions levels projected for 2010 is 25.2 percentage points.
"Kyoto's Big Con," The Wall Street Journal, January 19, 2006; Page A14 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113763495540950421.html?mod=opinion&ojcontent=otep


A failed effort to restrain urban sprawl in Portland, Oregon
Perhaps the best-known case of anti-sprawl legislation has been the "urban growth boundary," adopted in the late '70s to restrict development to areas closer to established urban areas. To slow the spread of suburban, single-family-home growth, the Portland region adopted a "grow up, not out" planning regime, which stressed dense, multistory development. Mass transit was given priority over road construction, which was deemed to be sprawl-inducing. Experts differ on the impact of these regulations, but it certainly has not created the new urbanist nirvana widely promoted by Portland's boosters. Strict growth limits have driven population and job growth further out, in part by raising the price of land within the growth boundary, to communities across the Columbia River in Washington state and to distant places in Oregon. Suburbia has not been crushed, but simply pushed farther away. Portland's dispersing trend appears to have intensified since 2000: The city's population growth has slowed considerably, and 95% of regional population increase has taken place outside the city limits.
Joel Kotkin, "The War Against Suburbia," The Wall Street Journal, January 14, 2006; Page A8 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113720150260446647.html?mod=opinion&ojcontent=otep


The Scribler will complete your drawings --- http://www.zefrank.com/scribbler/

Adding detail and color to a drawing --- http://img.lj.com.ua/denis7/drawgirl.gif

Constructing the Human Head --- http://www.gfxartist.com/features/tutorials


Flashback

The Wall Street Journal, January 16, 1998
Where do Jesse Jackson and Wall Street go from here? The civil rights leader's three-day Wall Street diversity conference has galvanized the securities industry as never before around the sensitive issue of minority hiring. No major Wall Street brokerage firm is run by an African-American.

History Question
Who first broke the story about Monica and what has happened to his fame and fortunes since then?

Answer
His name is Matt Drudge --- http://encyclopedia.thefreedictionary.com/Matt+Drudge


Question
What is Warren Buffett warning about most these days in terms of U.S. economic health?

Answer
The U.S. trade deficit is a bigger threat to the domestic economy than either the federal budget deficit or consumer debt and could lead to "political turmoil," billionaire investor Warren Buffett warned. ADVERTISEMENT "Right now, the rest of the world owns $3 trillion more of us than we own of them," Buffett told business students and faculty Tuesday at the University of Nevada, Reno. "In my view, it will create political turmoil at some point. ... Pretty soon, I think there will be a big adjustment," he said without elaborating. Buffett, head of Omaha, Neb.-based Berkshire Hathaway...
Scott Sonner, "Buffett Issues Warning Over Trade Deficit," Free Republic, January 18, 2006 --- http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1560201/posts
 


Google Inc. added two beefier Minis to its line of business search appliances.
The Mountain View, Calif.company said Minis are now available with capacities of 200,000 documents and 300,000 documents for $5,995 and $8,995, respectively. The new versions were in addition to the current 100,000-document appliance that sells for $2,995. Google als
 sells an enterprise-level appliance that can search up to 15 million documents. The device starts at $30,000 for searching up to 500,000 documents.

Antone Gonsalves, "Google Unveils Two Search Appliances," InternetWeek, January 12, 2006 --- http://www.internetweek.cmp.com/showArticle.jhtml?sssdmh=dm4.163237&articleId=175804113

Bob Jensen's search helpers are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/searchh.htm

Specialized search helpers are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/searchh.htm#SpecializedSearchEngines


If you aren’t (cynical) now, you will by the time you finish the new Bebchuk and Fried paper on executive compensation.  They paint a fairly gloomy picture of managers exerting their power to “extract rents and to camouflage the extent of their rent extraction.”  Rather than designed to solve agency cost problems, the paper makes the case that executive pay can by an agency cost in and of itself.  Let’s hope things aren’t this bad. 
http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=364220

They say that patriotism is the last refuge
To which a scoundrel clings.
Steal a little and they throw you in jail,
Steal a lot and they make you king.
There's only one step down from here, baby,
It's called the land of permanent bliss.
What's a sweetheart like you doin' in a dump like this?

Lyrics of a Bob Dylan song forwarded by Damian Gadal [DGADAL@CI.SANTA-BARBARA.CA.US

From The Wall Street Journal Accounting Weekly Review on January 13, 2006

TITLE: SEC to propose overhaul of Rules on Executive Pay
REPORTER: Kara Scannell
DATE: Jan 10, 2006
PAGE: A1
LINK: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113686357913042428.html 
TOPICS: Accounting, Disclosure, Disclosure Requirements, Executive compensation, Securities and Exchange Commission

SUMMARY: "The Securities and Exchange Commission, responding to rising criticism of soaring--and partially hidden--executive pay, is poised to propose the most sweeping overhaul of pay disclosure rules in 14 years, seeking to push companies to divulge much more about their top executives' perquisites, retirement benefits and total compensation.'

QUESTIONS:
1.) According to the description in the article, what are the problems and issues associated with current disclosure requirements for executive compensation? Where are those disclosures made? What entity establishes the requirements for those disclosures?

2.) What benefit will come from placing "the monetary value of stock-option grants...side by side with salary and bonus information"? How are those "monetary values" of stock option grants determined?

3.) The article refers to a new FASB accounting standard related to stock options. Summarize the requirements of that new standard. Will the changes described in this article impact those requirements? Explain.

4.) Is the SEC hoping to curb executive compensation with this new proposal? Explain your answer: if yes, indicate how disclosure might play a role in this process; if no, indicate how this disclosure change is independent of any desire to curb compensation.

5.) Shering-Plough's chief executive, Fred Hassan, stated that his company's managements believes that "transparency is good for shareholders...particularly if additional disclosures allow shareholders to look at the compensation in the context of management's performance..." Describe one way in which you might undertake an analysis from an investor's point of view to use disclosures about executive compensation in this way.

SMALL GROUP ASSIGNMENT: Assign group members to access corporate financial statements and proxy filings by industry, by student choice of company of interest, or any other method of choosing. Access the SEC's web site to obtain electronic access to both the most recent quarterly filing and the proxy statement. Ask students to describe the information found in these corporate filings and explain where they find the information. Make comparisons by company or across industry lines in amounts and types of executive compensation.

Access filings on the SEC web using the following steps described for Google, Inc.:

Access www.sec.gov 
Click on Search for Company Filings Under General-Purpose Searches, click on Companies & Other Filers In the box for Company name, type Google and click "Find companies" Click on the third CIK, 0001288776 In the box for Form Type, type DEF 14A (for proxy statements) and 10-Q (for quarterly reports)

Reviewed By: Judy Beckman, University of Rhode Island

Bob Jensen's threads on executive compensation are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudConclusion.htm#OutrageousCompensation


Here we don't go again on United Airlines
When all we really want to do is get there on schedule with our luggage
Now United is gambling on a flight plan that takes it in the opposite direction of the rest of the U.S. industry. Determined not to be another clone of low-cost, low-fare juggernaut Southwest Airlines, United is making an all-out effort to raise revenue by pampering its best business travelers -- and keeping them on United whether they are flying to a meeting on the coast, or taking the family to Orlando. That means accepting higher costs, the very problem that drove it into bankruptcy in the first place.
Susan Carey, "As Airlines Pull Out of Dive, United Charts Its Own Course," The Wall Street Journal, January 13, 2006; Page A1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113711845331145633.html?mod=todays_us_page_one


Memoirs:  Does truth really matter or is it better to fudge in order to sell millions of copies?
On Jan. 8, however, the Smoking Gun ( www.thesmokinggun.com  ) a website specializing in digging up public records, posted a lengthy report that challenges some of the facts in Frey's book. Among other things, the website's staff found a lack of evidence that Frey had a relationship with a girl who died in a train accident when he was in high school--Frey even wrote that he was blamed for the accident, which did much to stoke his dark-star mojo. The Smoking Gun found Frey's claim that he engaged in a melee with police officers in 1992 to have been fabricated. What is most disturbing, in a way (since a major plot point hangs thereon), is that the report questions the book's claim that Frey spent three months in an Ohio jail after rehab. The site even quotes Frey as having said in an interview, "I was in for a significantly shorter period of time than three months."
"The Trouble With Memoirs: An author is accused of making up key parts of his best-selling life story," Time Magazine, January 15, 2006 --- http://snipurl.com/MemoirTruth


"Tailor-Made Cartography with Google Maps," by Robert Siegel, NPR, January 13, 2006 ---
 http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5151938

Google's popular mapping service has inspired people to add their own information to maps. The resulting "mashups" are maps overlaid with clickable icons that provide a unique look at fast-food restaurant locations, crime statistics and other data sets.

Robert Siegel talks to Mike Pegg, whose Google Maps Mania Web log tracks the latest mashups, by category.

Topics include transit (Boston subway stations), current events (BBC world news), and weather and Earth (meteor impact sites).

Some are clearly designed to be useful for everyday life: New York pizza places, Washington, D.C., home prices, and Chicago crime locations. Others are more for fun: find the nearest pub or brewery, peek in on Webcams, or look for a convenient jogging route.

"One of my favorites is a mashup in Dublin, Ireland, which takes the real-time locations of a commuter train and plots it onto the map, and it actually shows that train moving," Pegg says.

Another popular mashup lets users see where they would end up if they drilled through the Earth to the other side. For example, click on Wichita, Kan., and you come out in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

"I think we're destined to see big things from this, both as the maps improve and as people's imaginations just continue to go wild with this," Pegg says.


Can Wikipedia Survive Its Own Success?
It's not easy being Wikipedia, a free web encyclopedia created and edited by anonymous contributors. Just ask founder Jimmy Wales, who has seen his creation come under fire in just a few short months as the site fends off vandalism and charges of inaccurate entries. But Wikipedia, founded in 2001 as a non-profit organization, has become a big enough presence that it raises a number of interesting questions, including: Just how accurate is free content, given recent events at Wikipedia? Does the aggregate 'wisdom of the crowd' trump the expertise of knowledgeable individuals? Does Wikipedia's policing mechanism work? And does the controversy over Wikipedia merely reflect further tension between old and new media? Wharton experts, along with Wales, offer some answers.
"Can Wikipedia Survive Its Own Success?," Knowledge@Wharton,  University of Pennsylvania, January 2006 --- http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/index.cfm?fa=viewArticle&id=1361

You can read about Wiki advantages and limitations at http://www.trinity.edu/~rjensen/245glosf.htm#Wiki
 


Meet the Mayor of Brussels: She's a Muslim (without a head cover)
Faouzia Hariche (38) is the acting mayor (or “bourgmestre” – burgomaster, from the Dutch burgemeester) of Brussels, the capital of Belgium and of the European Union. Ms Hariche was born in Algeria in 1967. She moved to Belgium when she was seven years old. Though Brussels was historically a Dutch-speaking city and is also considered to be the capital of Flanders, the Dutch-speaking northern half of Belgium, the city was forcibly “frenchified” after the establishment of Belgium in 1830 by French radicals who used French-speaking Wallonia, Belgium’s southern half, as a power base to conquer Flanders.
"Meet the Mayor of Brussels: She's a Muslim," Brussels Journal, January 16, 2006 --- http://www.brusselsjournal.com/node/671


Museum of Yo-Yo History --- http://www.theyoyomuseum.com/


AIG Expected to Pay $1 Billion-Plus to Settle Probes
AIG is expected to pay more than $1 billion to settle state and federal civil-fraud charges alleging the giant insurer used improper accounting to polish its earnings. Former CEO Hank Greenberg is not included in the accord.
Ian McDonald and Monica Langley, "AIG Expected to Pay $1 Billion-Plus to Settle Probes:  Huge Penalty Would Resolve Fraud Case Against Insurer But Wouldn't Cover Ex-CEO," The Wall Street Journal, January 13, 2006; Page A1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113712355453045791.html?mod=todays_us_page_one

Bob Jensen's threads on insurance company frauds are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudRotten.htm#MutualFunds


NEW E&Y REPORT ON SHARE-BASED PAYMENT – FASB STATEMENT NO. 123 --- Accounting Education News, January 12, 2006 --- http://accountingeducation.com/index.cfm?page=newsdetails&id=142123

On December 16, 2004, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued FASB Statement No. 123 (revised 2004), Share-Based Payment, which is a revision of FASB Statement No. 123, Accounting for Stock-Based Compensation. Statement 123(R) supersedes APB Opinion No. 25, Accounting for Stock Issued to Employees and its interpretations, and amends FASB Statement No. 95, Statement of Cash Flows.

While the Statement builds on many of the concepts in Statement 123, there are significant differences between the requirements of Statement 123(R) and Statement 123. Further, because of the short time between issuance of the Statement and its required implementation (annual periods beginning after June 15, 2005 for most public companies), it is critical that issuers of options and other share-based payments to employees quickly gain a thorough understanding of those requirements and be prepared to implement them within an effective internal control framework. Because of the length and complexity of Statement 123(R), efforts to understand and implement the Statement should have already begun.

Ernst & Young have designed a publication as a resource to help you become familiar with Statement 123(R) and assess the impact that Statement 123(R) will have on your company’s financial statements. Chapter 1 provides a high-level overview of Statement 123(R) and describes considerations for compensation plan design and implementation of the new Statement. The implementation discussion includes a description of certain requirements of Statement 123(R) that are catching many preparers by surprise. The remainder of this publication describes the requirements of Statement 123(R) in considerable detail. Throughout this publication they have included the actual text from Statement 123(R) and other standards (presented in shaded boxes) followed by their interpretations of that guidance (EY comments made within the guidance are included in bracketed text).

Bob Jensen's threads on FAS 123 are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/theory/sfas123/jensen01.htm




The Worst Jobs in History --- http://www.channel4.com/history/microsites/W/worstjobs/


The worst name in America's history
Fuk King Kwok was waiting for his driver's license to be printed when his name was called and a chuckling Illinois secretary of state employee offered some advice. "She [said] this is a dangerous name," the Chinese immigrant recalled. "She [said] the name translated is not so good, maybe I should change [it]. The word I hear is not so good."
Steve Patterson, "Name change should stop the snickers," Chicago Sun-Times, January 16, 2006 --- http://www.suntimes.com/output/news/cst-nws-namechange16.html
Jensen Comment
The Cantonese word for happiness is fuk (pronounced fook).  As Johnnie Cash once said:  "Bill or George! Anything but Fuk! I still hate that name!" --- http://www.toptown.com/hp/66/sue.htm


Forwarded by Paula

[1] Sometimes, when I look at my children, I say to myself, "Lillian, you should have remained a virgin." - Lillian Carter (mother of Jimmy Carter)

[2] I had a rose named after me and I was very flattered. But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalog: "No good in a bed, but fine against a wall." - Eleanor Roosevelt

[3] Last week, I stated this woman was the ugliest woman I had ever seen. I have since been visited by her sister, and now wish to withdraw that statement. - Mark Twain

[4] The secret of a good sermon is to have a good beginning and a good ending; and to have the two as close together as possible. - George Burns

[5] Santa Claus has the right idea. Visit people only once a year. - Victor Borge

[6] Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint. - Mark Twain

[7] What would men be without women? Scarce, sir...Mighty scarce. - Mark Twain

[8] By all means, marry. If you get a good wife, you'll become happy; if you get a bad one, you'll become a philosopher. - Socrates

[9] I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury. - Groucho Marx

[10] My wife has a slight impediment in her speech. Every now and then she stops to breathe. - Jimmy Durante

[11] The male is a domestic animal which, if treated with firmness and kindness, can be trained to do most things. - Jilly Cooper

[12] I have never hated a man enough to give his diamonds back. - Zsa Zs! a Gabor< BR> [13] Only Irish coffee provides in a single glass all four essential food groups: alcohol, caffeine, sugar and fat. - Alex Levine

[14] Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first. - Mark Twain

[15] My luck is so bad that if I bought a cemetery, people would stop dying. Ed Furgol

[16] Money can't buy you happiness... but it does bring you a more pleasant form of misery. - Spike Milligan

[17] What's the use of happiness? It can' t buy you money. - Henny Youngman

[18] I am opposed to millionaires... but it would be dangerous to offer me the position. - Mark Twain

[19] Until I was thirteen, I thought my name was shut up. - Joe Namath

[20] Youth would be an ideal state if it came a little later in life. - Herbert Henry Asquith

[21] I don't feel old. I don't feel anything until noon. Then it's time for my nap. - Bob Hope

[22] I never drink water because of the disgusting things that fish do in it. WC Fields

[23] We could certainly slow the aging process down if it had to work its way through Congress. - Will Rogers

[24] Don't worry about avoiding temptation... as you grow older, it will avoid you. - Winston Churchill

[25] Maybe it's true that life begins at fifty, but everything else starts to wear out, fall out, or spread out. - Phyllis Diller

[26] By the time a man is wise enough to watch his step, he's too old to go anywhere. - Billy Crystal 


Forwarded by Auntie Bev

HOW TO STAY YOUNG

01. Try everything twice. On Madam's tombstone (of Whelan and Madam), she said she wanted this epitaph: "Tried everything twice...loved it both times!"

02. Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down. (Keep this In mind if you are one of those grouches).

03. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain get idle. "An idle mind is the devil's workshop." And the devil's name is Alzheimer's!

04. Enjoy the simple things.

05. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath.

And if you have a friend who makes you laugh, spend lots and Lots of time with HIM/HER.

06. The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person who is with us our entire life is ourself. LIVE while you are alive.

07. Surround yourself with what you love, whether it's family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever. Your home is your refuge.

08. Cherish your health: If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.

09. Don't take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, even to the next county or to a foreign country, but NOT a guilt trip.

10. Tell the people you love that you love them at every opportunity.


 




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Professor Robert E. Jensen (Bob) http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen
Jesse H. Jones Distinguished Professor of Business Administration
Trinity University, San Antonio, TX 78212-7200
Voice: 210-999-7347 Fax: 210-999-8134  Email:  rjensen@trinity.edu