When I retired in May I took this picture of one of Erika's flower gardens on my first day home. It has been as warm in January as it was back in May. The snow completely surrendered to temperatures over 60 degrees, high winds, and squalls of driving rain. Even if we get tons of snow in the spring it will still be a disaster for New England's winter resorts, clothing sales, and snow equipment sales. I personally hate snow mobiles so the only sweet justice is that all those machines are like atheist in their coffins --- all tuned up with nowhere to go. On January 6 it even reached 43 degrees atop our highest mountain --- Mt. Washington. And wind gusts did not hit 100 mph on the summit that day. New Englanders would curse El Nino if they could pronounce it ---  http://edugreen.teri.res.in/EXPLORE/climate/elnino.htm

In the January 3 edition of Tidbits I provided some details of Erika's upcoming surgery --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/tidbits/2007/tidbits070103.htm
We leave for Boston tomorrow. A team of surgeons will commence early in the morning on January 10. For her these 10 -14 hours on the table will pass in an instant. But she will awaken in pain hell. She's awakened in pain hell on eight previous spine surgeries. Women who recall the pain of childbirth might empathize by multiplying childbirth pain by 10 for intensity and 100 for duration.

After having lived in severe and incessant pain for so many years, it puts faith in God to the test by asking "What did I ever do to deserve this?" or "Why can't I just die?"  Erika's faith is abiding, and she never asks such questions! She never questions God's plan for her. It makes her truly appreciate the few good days in which the pain is less intense. And her expectations for life in Heaven are are much lower than for most. She'd happily scrub toilets and wait tables for eternity in Heaven if she can do so free of pain.

It brings tears to her eyes to know so many of you are praying for her and wishing her well.

For those of you closer friends intending to send flowers, Erika says she will settle for the "The Rose" that is given by the hospital itself to all incoming patients. Erika prefers that you instead send an equivalent amount of money to the New England Baptist Hospital --- a small  orthopedics and neurosurgery hospital (150 beds) that has Rank 15 among U.S. hospitals according the US News --- http://www.usnews.com/usnews/health/best-hospitals/rankings/specihqorth.htm
Among other distinctions NEBH is the official hospital of the Boston Celtecs --- a good thing too since they're in pain most of the time. Jack Nicholas also chose this hospital for his hip replacement surgery. The NEBH is also affiliated with two famous medical schools in Boston.

Please mention that her lead surgeon on this tremendous effort is Dr. Stephen Parazin. He plans to perform the following surgery on Erika Jensen in Boston's New England Baptist Hospital on January 10. Her surgery is called Pedicle Subtraction Osteotomity for Fixed Sagittal Imbalance --- http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=15161046
Ways to Give are summarized at http://nebh.org/display.asp?node_id=3699&leaf_id=6318

In the UC --- Berkeley Medical School, Dr. Parazin conducted some cutting edge spinal surgery research, albeit case-method research. He also received outstanding training from uniquely-specialized surgery professors at the UC Medical School

Jean Heck and I updated our paper on the sad state of case-method research in academic accountancy at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/395wpTAR/Web/TAR395wp.htm

Bob Jensen

Tidbits on January 8, 2007
Bob Jensen

For earlier editions of Tidbits go to http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm
For earlier editions of New Bookmarks go to http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm 

The new December 31 edition of New Bookmarks is linked at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm 

The new December 31 edition of Fraud Updates is linked at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm

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/.

Bob Jensen's past presentations and lectures --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/resume.htm#Presentations   

Bob Jensen's Threads --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/threads.htm

Bob Jensen's Home Page is at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/

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

Online Video, Slide Shows, and Audio
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

A great helper site for HDTV shoppers --- http://www.cnet.com/4520-7874_1-5102926-1.html

Columbia University's Redefined MBA (from Business Week Magazine) --- Click Here

Redneck Comedians --- http://www.metacafe.com/watch/260459/redneck_comedians/

A Year's Worth of Memorable Moments on NPR --- http://www.npr.org/programs/specials/moments_2006/index.html

Top 10 Movies of 2006 -- and the Also-Rans --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6707086

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

Hits From the 1960s (original recordings) --- http://oldfortyfives.com/TakeMeBackToTheSixties.htm

A Soul-Singing Legend, Reborn in 'Nashville' (Country Music) --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6598905

Digital Mozart Museum --- http://dme.mozarteum.at/mambo/index.php

Peking Opera meets Grand Opera Thursday night on the stage of New York's Metropolitan Opera, as The First Emperor has its world premiere --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6660144

'Too Hot to Handel': A Modern 'Messiah' --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6653685

NPR Online Concerts --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5194329

Lieberson's 'Neruda Songs,' Tracing Love's Arc (Classical Music_ --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6696483

A Lounge-Friendly Blend of Beats and Bass --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6620226

Skate Legend Guerrero on Deck with a New CD (Hard Rock) --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6636164

Tom Waits: Rock Classics, with a Gravelly Rasp --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6631200

Violin Instruction:  The American Suzuki Institute at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens
Point: the Suzuki Method in Action --- http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/Arts/subcollections/SuzukiAbout.shtml

Guitar Never Seemed So Hard --- http://www.glumbert.com/media/mckee

Photographs and Art

National Eye Institute: Photos, Images, and Videos --- http://www.nei.nih.gov/photo/

Hummingbirds --- http://www7.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0701/feature4/

Strange Statues Around the World --- http://haha.nu/funny/strange-statues-around-the-world

David Rumsey Map Collection: Antique Atlases --- http://www.davidrumsey.com/atlases.html

Witness Photography by James Nachtwey --- http://www.jamesnachtwey.com/

Maps of the Ancient World --- http://www.fsmitha.com/maps.html  

Mapping History --- http://www.bl.uk/learning/artimages/maphist/mappinghistory.html 

Rutger Vanderbent Photography --- http://www.rutgervanderbent.nl/

The Pacific Northwest Olympic Peninsula Community Museum --- http://content.lib.washington.edu/cmpweb/index.html

Nature Photos --- http://www.alpics.net/

Life Is a Collage for Artist Betye Saar --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6688207

The Accidental Historian of Laporte, Indiana (Photography) --- http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6628242


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

Bibliochaise online library --- http://www.nobodyandco.it/sito/inglese/the bibliochaise.html

Brain Juice Biographies --- http://www.brain-juice.com/main.html

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow --- http://www.hwlongfellow.org/

Margaret Ogilvy by James Matthew Barrie (1860-1937) --- Click Here

The Seven Poor Travellers by Charles Dickens (1812-1870) --- Click Here

Barnaby Rudge by Charles Dickens (1812-1870) --- Click Here

The Stark Munro Letters by Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930) --- Click Here

The Coxon Fund by Henry James (1843-1916) --- Click Here 

The Pupil by Henry James (1843-1916) --- Click Here

Records of a Family of Engineers by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) --- Click Here

Edinburgh Picturesque Notes by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) --- Click Here

E.E. Cummings Poems --- http://www.geocities.com/phaith_99/eecindex.html

Find Quotes --- http://www.findquotes.com/

The Quotations Page --- http://www.quotationspage.com/quotes/

Books in Depth (including downloads of sample chapters) --- http://www.booksindepth.com/
Magazine, Periodical and Website Book Reviews from around the World ---

  • There is not the slightest doubt that sustainable development is one of the most destructive concepts.
    Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen (1906-1994) --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicholas_Georgescu-Roegen

    A man's worst difficulties begin when he is able to do as he likes.
    Thomas Henry Huxley (1825-1895) --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Henry_Huxley

    The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
    Fedor Michailovich Dostoevski (1821-1881) --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fyodor_Dostoevsky

    Marijuana is now the biggest cash crop grown in the US, exceeding traditional harvests such as wheat, corn and soy beans, says a new report. The study shows that 10,000 tonnes of marijuana worth $35.8bn (£18.4bn) is grown each year; the street value would be even higher. This dwarfs the $23bn-worth of corn grown, $17.6bn-worth of soybeans and $12.2bn-worth of hay.
    Dan Glaster, "All-time high for homegrown as pot becomes top cash crop in US ," The Guardian, December 19, 2006 --- http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,,1975161,00.html
    Jensen Comment
    With a bit of street pricing and agricultural investigation, this could be written up as a classic "make-versus-buy" case for our managerial accounting courses. Alternately this could be a chapter in Freakonomics Volume II --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freakonomics
    We should tell University of Chicago economist Steven Levitt and co-author of Freakonomics that abortion is just not doing a sufficient job in reducing drug crime among all those dealers still living with their mothers.

    ExxonMobil Corp. gave $16 million to 43 ideological groups between 1998 and 2005 in a coordinated effort to mislead the public by discrediting the science behind global warming, the Union of Concerned Scientists asserted Wednesday. The report by the science-based nonprofit advocacy group mirrors similar claims by Britain's leading scientific academy. Last September, The Royal Society wrote the oil company asking it to halt support for groups that "misrepresented the science of climate change." ExxonMobil did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the scientific advocacy group's report.
    PhysOrg, January 3, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news87058248.html
    Also see http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewCulture.asp?Page=/Culture/archive/200701/CUL20070104a.html
    Jensen Comment
    The words "mislead" and "misrepresent" are a very loaded conclusions. They imply diversion or obfuscation of truth. If the truth is unknown, then funding research to discover greater accuracy is perfectly legitimate. Funding of challenges of so-called truth is perfectly legitimate. But the funding of research truly intended to obfuscate the truth is totally contrary to academe and dangerous in politics. Global warming is such a complicated phenomenon it seems that there are some undeniable truths such as recent abnormal melting of ice at the poles of the earth. But much is unknown about underlying causes and cures. Frustrations in finding causes have led some scientists to claim more than their data support on both sides of the issue.

    In most societies the priesthood strives to establish a monopoly, often by draconian means, such as torture and death, in order to preserve its status. The brief flourishing of the age of science in the last two or three centuries largely brought that process to a halt but, now that the scientific method and its inherent scepticism have fallen into disrepute among the powers that be of the new establishment, the new theologies are beginning to assert their authority. The journals that were once the great pillars of science and its methods now openly practice a crude censorship of anything that smacks of heresy, while committees of  self-styled scientists brand dissenters and attempt to consign them to oblivion.The peer review system, another fundamental pillar of science, has always been prone to corruption by the formation of dominant interest groups, but the present situation is orders of magnitude more serious than that. Dissenting arguments are not only excluded from peer review publications, but they are dismissed by dint of that very exclusion. Some of the high priests of the new order go to extraordinary lengths to prevent the publication of challenges to their own preachments. Then there is control of funding. Those who produce hard evidence embarrassing to the establishment (such as why 2003 was supposedly a year of record heat) are likely to find themselves bereft of cash.Alas, poor science!
     John Bignell, "The shaman principle," January 15, 2006 --- http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/2006 January.htm

    A scientist in any serious scientific discipline, such as genetics, would be in serious trouble if his fellow scientists were unable to confirm or replicate his claim to have found the gene for fatness. He would gain a reputation as being 'unreliable' and universities would be reluctant to employ him. This self-imposed insistence on rigorous methodology is however missing from contemporary epidemiology; indeed the most striking feature is the insouciance with which epidemiologists announce their findings, as if they do not expect anybody to take them seriously. It would, after all, be a very serious matter if drinking alcohol really did cause breast cancer.
    James Le Fanu --- http://www.open2.net/truthwillout/human_genome/article/genome_fanu.htm
    Bob Jensen's threads on replication are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen//theory/00overview/theory01.htm#Replication

    The great tragedy of science, the slaying of a beautiful theory by an ugly fact.
    Thomas Henry Huxley as quoted by John Bignell at http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/2006 January.htm

    All science is either physics or stamp collecting.
    Ernest Rutherford --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernest_Rutherford

    A former US policeman and undercover drug agent has appalled narcotics officials by introducing a Christmas video for drug users on how to avoid arrest and fool the police. Barry Cooper, who is described by former colleagues as perhaps the best drug- enforcement officer in America, will next week begin marketing Never Get Busted Again, which will show viewers how to “conceal their stash, avoid narcotics profiling and fool canines every time”. Mr Cooper, who supports the legalisation of marijuana, made the video because he believes that the fight against drugs in America is a waste of money. (and precious prison space for nonviolent marijuana dealers)
    Tim Reid, "How to beat the drug busts - by the best narcotics officer in America," London Times, December 23, 2006 --- http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-2516418,00.html
    Also see the MSNBC account on December 22, 2006 --- http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16322314/from/RS.1/

    In yet another assault on childhood fun, the game of tag has come under fire from Addle-minded, er, Attleboro, Massachusetts. Willett Elementary School has banned tag from recess. Principal Gaylene Heppe made the decision because, as she told the Associated Press, recess is "a time when accidents can happen." . . . Citing concerns over safety and liability, the school has put a lock on all unsupervised chasing games at recess -- no tag backs, no free base -- thus ending yet another form of exercise for children. So, instead of having healthy, well-adjusted kids, Attleboro will soon have a bunch of fat kids whose parents have a litigation attorney on speed dial.
    Erik Deckers, "You're Dumb!" The Irascible Professor, December 21, 2006 ---

    Four year old pervert in Texas? The teacher's aid probably speed dialed her lawyers as well!
    The Nov. 13 letter from La Vega Independent School District
    http://www.lavegaisd.org/  stated his son, who was 4 years old at the time, was involved in "inappropriate physical behavior interpreted as sexual contact and/or sexual harassment" after the boy hugged a teacher's aide and "rubbed his face in the chest of (the) female employee" on Nov. 10. The letter also stated Blackwell's son, who Blackwell requested not be named in this story for privacy reasons, spent the day in in-school suspension (ISS) as punishment for the incident.
    Emily Ingram, "Hug lands 4-year-old in suspension," Waco Tribune, December 10, 2006 --- http://www.wacotrib.com/news/content/news/stories/2006/12/10/12102006wacoffensivetouching.html 

    Five year old sexual predator in Maryland? "Sexual harassment" is now on the child's school record!
    Mowen said that definition comes from the Maryland State Department of Education. According to a school document provided by the boy's father, the 5-year-old pinched a girl's buttocks on Dec. 8 in a hallway at the school south of Hagerstown. Charles Vallance, the boy's father, said he was unable to explain to his son what he had done. "He knows nothing about sex," Vallance said. "There's no way to explain what he's been written up for. He knows it as playing around. He doesn't know it as anything sexual at all." The incident was described as "sexual harassment" on the school form.
    Opinion Journal, December 21, 2006

    My son was expelled in the 5th grade for telling another fifth grader that he liked her. I guess saying that to someone who doesn't feel the same way now constitutes sexual harrassment.
    Opinion Journal, December 21, 2006

    "Former ambassador Joseph Wilson asked a federal judge Wednesday not to force him to testify in the CIA leak case and accused former White House aide I. Lewis 'Scooter' Libby of trying to harass him on the witness stand," the Associated Press reports from Washington. Hmm, for a guy who burst onto the scene three years ago as the most garrulous figure since Ted Turner, and who then wrote a book called "The Politics of Truth," Wilson is awfully averse to testifying under oath.
    Opinion Journal, December 21, 2006

    As one of a series of measures to establish a personality cult, Saparmurat Niyazov had a gold statue of himself put on top of a building in the capital, Ashgabat. The statue revolves so it always faces the sun. Niyazov, who was appointed president for life in 1999, changed the names of the months in honour of members of his own family. . . . Niyazov outlawed ballet and opera and banned men from listening to car radios; he also banned the use of recorded music at weddings and other public events.
    "The personality cult of Turkmenbashi," The Guardian, December 21, 2006 --- Click Here
    Jensen Comment
    Saparmurat Niyazov, ruler of Turkmenistan, who dubbed himself "Turkmenbashi," or "father of the Turkmen."  He died unexpectedly on December 21, 2006 (since "December" is not the name of a month in Turkmenistan, he really died on Rukhnama 11, 2006). 

    British writer David Irving wasted no time Friday offending Jews and black people at a news conference, a day after his return from Austria where he was imprisoned for denying the Holocaust. At a news conference in London, Irving endorsed actor Mel Gibson's drunken comments earlier this year that Jews were responsible for all modern wars . . . He said sales from his book on World War II German Gen. Erwin Rommel enabled him to walk into a car showroom with a paper bag stuffed with cash to buy a "(racial slur) brown" Rolls-Royce.
    "David Irving: 'Mel Gibson was right'," The Jerusalem Post, December 22, 2006 --- Click Here

    The international Global Voices summit brings together political refugees, human rights advocates and people just determined to save the world -- or a part of it. What they have in common is a deep certainty that the internet can do more than just sell us stuff. Exciting things happen when dedicated bloggers from around the world meet for the first time. For Briton Rachel Rawlins, being introduced to Tunisian exile Sami Ben Gharbia was the chance to meet a personal hero.Gharbia is the creator of the Tunisian Prison Map -- an idea inspired by a New York Times interactive map charting murder locations in New York City. Gharbia turned the concept on its head: Instead of showing government figures on crime, he'd display where his former government was behaving criminally, imprisoning political dissidents for daring to speak out.
    Quinn Norton, "Bloggers Shrink the Planet," Wired News, December 21, 2006 ---

    In this startling and absorbing new book, which created a considerable storm in Germany when it was published in 2005, Götz Aly advances another explanation. It was, he says, material factors that persuaded the great mass of Germans to support Hitler and the Nazis almost to the very end. The Nazi leadership, he claims in Hitler's Beneficiaries, made the Germans into "well-fed parasites. Vast numbers of Germans fell prey to the euphoria of a gold rush.... As the state was transformed into a gigantic apparatus for plundering others, average Germans became unscrupulous profiteers and passive recipients of bribes." . . . In his new book, he caused an even greater upset in Germany than before by arguing that it was not only the elites whose support for the Nazi regime was based on rational, nonideological grounds but also the vast mass of the people. How does his new claim stand up to critical scrutiny?
    Richard J. Evans, "Parasites of Plunder?" The Nation, December 20, 2006 --- http://www.thenation.com/doc/20070108/evans

    The American military rushed into Iraq with too few troops — “They chose to go into battle with a ground combat capability,” General Barry McCaffrey is approvingly quoted as saying, “that was inadequate, unless their assumptions proved out.” And neocons had no real clue about what would spring up immediately behind us as we raced into Baghdad. So back home we declared “Mission Accomplished” — even as the jihadists and ex-Baathists were filtering through our attenuated lines to begin their insurrection. When we did belatedly react, the U.S. military ended up terrorizing civilians and tried to use clumsy, brute force instead of sophisticated counterinsurgency tactics against an ever more subtle enemy that hid among civilians. General Tommy Franks, as the henchman of an imperious Donald Rumsfeld, was undeniably clever enough to force-feed his flawed plans down the throats of the Pentagon’s top brass but not wise enough to understand the nature of asymmetrical warfare and counterinsurgency — and thus predictably bailed to write his memoirs and hit the lucrative lecture circuit before his victory was mussed up.
    Victor Davis Hanson, "A review of Fiasco: The American Adventure in Iraq by Thomas E. Ricks (Penguin Press, 2006, pp. 496), December 23, 2006 --- http://victorhanson.com/articles/hanson122306.html
    Jensen Comment
    I think the main assumption that failed was that the Iraqi people would be so happy to be freed from Saddam's harsh dictatorship that they would gladly come together and form the jewel of democracy in the Middle East. We should have learned in Bosnia and Afghanistan that freeing Muslins from tyrants does not make them either grateful or give them peace among themselves. We never learn.

    Will Fannie eventually become an even bigger taxpayer loss than the infamous Savings and Loan frauds?
    Fannie Mae's stock price has been on an upswing since late summer, reflecting investor confidence that a Democratic Congress would make strict scrutiny of the mortgage giant less likely (see the nearby chart). And there's no doubt that with Barney Frank wielding the gavel in the House Financial Services Committee, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will have a pal on Capitol Hill. Mr. Frank is already talking about expanding the companies' operations (and thus taxpayer exposure to any financial accident) . . . The well-documented allegation is that Fannie's managers manipulated earnings to ensure that their bonuses and incentive compensation were maximized. If Fannie didn't in fact reach those earnings targets -- and it has since restated its earnings by $6.3 billion -- then that money does not belong to the managers who "earned" it.
    "Ill-Gotten Raines," The Wall Street Journal, December 20, 2006; Page A18 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/SB116658240822955337.html?mod=djemITP

    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's plan to ship thousands of California inmates to prisons in other states to reduce overcrowding is faltering because few prisoners - some intimidated by powerful gangs -- have volunteered to move. . . . Sources familiar with prison operations who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak on behalf of the department say that gang leaders have instructed members not to take the offer of moving out-of-state because it will upset balances of power in prisons and leave gang members left vulnerable due to reduced numbers.
    Mark Martin, "Gang intimidation threatens Schwarzenegger's prison plan:  Few inmates volunteer to move to other states," San Francisco Chronicle, December 22, 2006 --- Click Here

    Canada a haven for pedophiles
    A newly released report says that the age of consent for vaginal sex in Canada – currently set at 14 – has made this country a favorite destination for child-sex “tourism”. The Global Monitoring Report on the Status of Action against the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children, says that Canada’s age of consent has made Canada a haven for pedophiles. The report was issued by the Bangkok-based organization, End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes, or ECPAT International. It gives Canada 17 recommendations, including raising the age of consent from 14 to 16.
    Hilary White, "Age of Consent at 14 Makes Canada Favoured Sex Tourism," Raiders News Network, December 20, 2006 --- http://www.raidersnewsnetwork.com/full.php?news=1381

    Some of the most violent criminals at large today are illegal aliens. Yet in cities where the crime these aliens commit is highest, the police cannot use the most obvious tool to apprehend them: their immigration status. In Los Angeles, for example, dozens of members of a ruthless Salvadoran prison gang have sneaked back into town after having been deported for such crimes as murder, assault with a deadly weapon, and drug trafficking. Police officers know who they are and know that their mere presence in the country is a felony. Yet should a cop arrest an illegal gangbanger for felonious reentry, it is he who will be treated as a criminal, for violating the LAPD’s rule against enforcing immigration law.
    Heather Mac Donald, "The Illegal-Alien Crime Wave," City Journal ---

    A writer is someone who spends years patiently trying to discover the second being inside him, and the world that makes him who he is. When I speak of writing, the image that comes first to my mind is not a novel, a poem, or a literary tradition; it is the person who shuts himself up in a room, sits down at a table, and, alone, turns inward. Amid his shadows, he builds a new world with words. This man—or this woman—may use a typewriter, or profit from the ease of a computer, or write with a pen on paper, as I do. As he writes, he may drink tea or coffee, or smoke cigarettes. From time to time, he may rise from his table to look out the window at the children playing in the street, or, if he is lucky, at trees and a view, or even at a black wall. He may write poems, or plays, or novels, as I do. But all these differences arise only after the crucial task is complete—after he has sat down at the table and patiently turned inward. To write is to transform that inward gaze into words, to study the worlds into which we pass when we retire into ourselves, and to do so with patience, obstinacy, and joy.
    Orhan Pamuk, "MY FATHER’S SUITCASE:  The Nobel Lecture, 2006," The New Yorker, December 25, 2006 --- http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/articles/061225fa_fact1

    One of the things I've learned on the Google is to pull up maps. It's very interesting to see -- I've forgotten the name of the program -- but you get the satellite, and you can -- like, I kinda like to look at the ranch. It reminds me of where I wanna be sometimes.
    George W. Bush on an interview with CNBC. He failed to mention that he could also see where he doesn't wanna be ever."

    The best thing about the future is that it comes only one day at a time.
    Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abraham_Lincoln

    A new report by scientists studying Louisiana's sinking coast says the land here is not just sinking, it's sliding ever so slowly into the Gulf of Mexico. The new findings may add a kink to plans being drawn up to build bigger and better levees to protect this historic city and Cajun bayou culture. If the land is shifting - even slightly - engineers may need to take that into consideration as they build new levees and draw lines across the coast to identify areas that should and shouldn't be protected.
    PhysOrg, January 3, 2007 --- http://physorg.com/news86929148.html

    Nothing good is going to come from political haggling over some hypothetical Social Security crisis decades in the future, when our economy will be vastly different and hugely more productive. From the completion of a worldwide fiber-optic broadband Internet to cornucopian energy and medical advances, the global economy is engaged in a siege of accelerating innovation that will unify it and enrich it increasingly as time passes. But no legislative reshuffling of taxes and spending today will enhance the economy's ability to support medical care, housing and transport for the aged in the future. That will depend not on actuarial trumpery but on the realities of productivity, technology, immigration and global trade and investment. The key is keeping the economy open to outside investors as our population ages and as the productive center of the global economy shifts toward Asia. As Michael Milken points out, the younger workers around the globe will use their increasing savings to buy the assets of American seniors as they grow older, thus offering liquidity to our retirees, sustaining U.S. asset prices, and expanding U.S. opportunities.
    George Gilder, "Economics Is Not For Actuaries," The Wall Street Journal, January 2, 2007 --- Click Here


    Changes in Cisco VPN for tunneling into (updating) your on-campus networked files

    Although my comments below apply to my Trinity University networked files, they may apply to many of you who maintain networked files back on your own campus. My networked files are mainly Drive U (email Personal Folders), Drive W (faculty Web server), and Drive J (LAN drive). In prior years when I had an office on campus, I installed GoToMyPC on my office computer. As long as the computer was turned on I could, thereby, operate that computer from anywhere in the world from virtually any computer. In technical terms GoToMyPC is a very "thin client" alternative and a very ethical company ---
    Click Here

    After I retired from teaching in Texas and moved to New Hampshire, Trinity extended me emeritus services for computing and a secretary. However, I no longer have an office on campus and our Computer Center was not enthusiastic about maintaining a campus computer for my GoToMyPC home base. Techies at Trinity recommended that I install Cisco VPN's free service (at least its free to me) --- Click Here

    Basically I was happy with VPN although there were a few minor frustrations. For example saving a file from MS FrontPage, MS Excel, or MS Word can take the better part of the day. But the work around for this is to update all the files on my local (New Hampshire) computer and then transfer the updated files through VPN to the campus network drives via Windows Explorer. This is reasonably fast and effective. You cannot access VPN from public computers such as those found in Internet cafes and public libraries. This is possible with GoToMyPC.

    Over the recent holidays, techies at Trinity installed a security upgrade to VPN that I find totally frustrating. If I'm connected to VPN, I can access my network drives. However, I cannot go to off-campus Websites on my browsers (Internet Explorer and Foxpro). To access off-campus Websites I must disconnect from VPN.

    All the flip flopping between VPN Connect and VPN Disconnect would be tolerable if it wasn't for a glitch in MS Outlook. If I disconnect from VPN in order to access off-campus Websites, MS Outlook does not work properly when I eventually re-connect to VPN. The only way to get MS Outlook to work properly is to reboot my entire system --- which is a genuine pain.

    So that brings me to a work-around that I'm using. When I start my computer I do not connect to VPN or open MS Outlook. Instead I access my email via the Internet. For Trinity University the Web Link is https://exchange.trinity.edu/ 
    I'm certain most other colleges have an Outlook Web Access site. I can then read my email messages, send out replies, delete the junk, etc. But I cannot save message to my Drive U Personal Folders or update my Drive J and Drive W files. For that I must connect to Cisco VPN. For Drive U Personal Folder access  I must reboot and open MS Outlook.

    I'm still learning about Outlook Web Access. I've not yet discovered how to add a digital signature to my messages sent via OWA. I'm also having troubles converting to HTML formatting.

    There are of course other work-arounds that do not use VPN or GoToMyPC. One is to use the old fashioned and reliable FTP transfers (which to my knowledge will not work for my Drive U email Personal Folders) which work for LAN and Web drives. I keep a large set of files maintained on the Computer Science Department Web server --- http://www.cs.trinity.edu/~rjensen/
    I maintain these files with FTP. You can read more about FTP services at http://www.trinity.edu/its/faqs/

    Stickam up!
    Where are young people (and others) turning for uncensored videos, photos, and other Web site content?

    Popular Web sites like YouTube and MySpace have hired the equivalent of school hallway monitors to police what visitors to their sites can see and do by cracking down on piracy and depictions of nudity and violence. So where do the young thrill-seekers go? Increasingly, to new Web sites like Stickam.com, which is building a business by going where others fear to tread: into the realm of unfiltered live broadcasts from Web cameras.
    Brad Stone, "Young Turn to Web Sites Without Rules," The New York Times, January 2, 2007 --- http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/02/technology/02net.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

    The Stickam (or is that sick am?) site is at http://www.stickam.com/
    Stickam is concerned about the safety and privacy of all of the members of our community, especially minors. However, it is important to keep in mind that Stickam is intended for broad general use and some users may consider some content available on Stickam is offensive, indecent or objectionable. AVC can not be held responsible for any content Posted by Stickam users. While Stickam has established rules keeping children under the age of 14 from becoming a member, it is easy for children to lie about their age and thus gain access to Content which may be inappropriate and unintended for them. It is up to parents to properly supervise their children’s online activities. Certain parental control protections are commercially available which can assist parents in supervising their children’s online activities such as computer hardware, software, and filtering services which can be used to block a child’s access to websites such as Stickam.com. You can find tools that will assist you in supervising your children’s online activities by clicking here --- http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&q=parental+control+software

    Help for the younger generation's planning ahead for their financial futures

    "A Glimpse of the Future: Savings and asset accumulation among Americans 25–34," Journal of Accountancy, January 2007 --- http://www.aicpa.org/pubs/jofa/jan2007/special2.htm

    Bob Jensen's personal finance bookmarks are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob1.htm

    Also see http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/fees.htm

    PDF Now Means Pretty Darn Fearful
    Computer security researchers said Wednesday they have discovered a vulnerability in Adobe Systems Inc.'s ubiquitous Acrobat Reader software that allows cyber-intruders to attack personal computers through trusted Web links. Virtually any Web site hosting Portable Document Format, or PDF, files are vulnerable to attack, according to researchers from Symantec Corp. and VeriSign Inc.'s iDefense Intelligence. The attacks could range from stealing cookies that track a user's Web browsing history to the creation of harmful worms, the researchers said. The flaw, first revealed at a hacker conference in Germany over the holidays, exists in a plug-in that enables Acrobat users to view PDF files within Web browsers. By manipulating the Web links to those documents, hackers and online thieves are able to commandeer the Acrobat software and run malicious code when users attempt to open the files, according to Ken Dunham, director of the rapid response team at VeriSign's iDefense Intelligence.
    "Researchers: Adobe's PDF Software Flawed," PhysOrg, January 4, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news87093505.html

    Bob Jensen's threads on computing and network security are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ecommerce/000start.htm

    Study: Age, sex affect traffic accidents
    Purdue University engineering researchers showed statistical differences in traffic accident injuries depend upon the gender and age of drivers, the university said. Researchers found significant differences in the severity of injuries sustained in accidents involving men and women and drivers within three age groups: young, 16-24; middle-aged, 25-64; and older, 65 and above. Among the findings, foregoing seat belts increased the likelihood of injury by 119 percent for young women, 164 percent for middle-aged women and 187 percent for older women. Fatalities were more likely for middle-aged men who fall asleep at the wheel, speed, had an accident at an intersection or after midnight Friday or Saturday, researchers said. The same factors had no significant effect on the injury levels for middle-aged women.
    "Study: Age, sex affect traffic accidents," PhysOrg, January 3, 3006 --- http://physorg.com/news87050400.html

    Investment Helpers
    From the Journal of Accountancy January 2007 Smart Stops on the Web --- http://www.aicpa.org/pubs/jofa/jan2007/news_web.htm

    Onward and Upward
    Here CPAs and financial advisers can get a free trial membership and explore some of the nonfinancial considerations of retirement, such as how to handle change and revisit past interests as future options. Retirement Resources has links to Web sites on health, recreation and working after retirement. Find books on successful retirement in Suggested Reading, get the free newsletter Next Phase News and download research findings in “Retirement Trends and Truths.”

    Get the Financial Facts
    This blog, created by the founder and president of Kim Snider Financial Communications, has dozens of posts from financial journals and Web sites on topics including annuities, bonds, cash flow investments, financial education and investment principles. Find out how Kim Snider invests her own money and learn her portfolio management strategies with a free informational session.

    A Helping Hand
    Personal financial planners with clients that have kids in school will want to bookmark this Smart Stop for guides on navigating financial aid, loan and scholarship information. Find links to aid programs from the military and federal and state governments, as well as resources on education tax benefits and financial aid applications. Get calculators to project college costs and help with family budgeting. Or go to Beyond Financial Aid for a financial aid checklist and links to college selection and jobs and internship sites.

    Money Matters
    Follow this blogger’s personal finance journey to learn about the 10 best domestic equity fund managers and how to properly close a credit card account. Look up your life expectancy in the Archives or go to the PFBlog Digest to get the scoop on paying off student loans, starting salaries for college grads and how 529 plans affect financial aid eligibility.

    Make a Clean Break
    Financial advisers looking for divorce resources for female clients can go to this site’s Downloadable Documents section for state-specific divorce forms, parenting, separation and property settlement agreements. The Legal Considerations for Women and Financial Information sections offer divorce strategies and advice on choosing an attorney.


    Why was I passed over again this year?
    2006 Foot-in-Mouth Awards ---

    Women Partners in the Big 4 Accounting Firms
    For the tenth consecutive year, Deloitte & Touche USA LLP tops the Big Four accounting firms in percentage of women partners, principals and directors, according to Public Accounting Report's 2006 Survey of Women in Public Accounting. The survey revealed that Deloitte's percentage of women partners, principals and directors is currently 19.3 percent, surpassing that of KPMG (16.8 percent), Pricewaterhouse Coopers (15.8 percent) and Ernst & Young (13.5 percent). Deloitte has held this lead every year since the inception of the survey in 1997, according to Jonathan Hamilton, editor, Public Accounting Report.
    SmartPros, December 26, 2006 --- http://accounting.smartpros.com/x55948.xml

    Women now make up more than 60 percent of all accountants and auditors in the United States, according to the Clarion-Ledger. That is an estimated 843,000 women in the accounting and auditing work force.
    AccountingWeb, "Number of Female Accountants Increasing," June 2, 2006 ---

    Jensen Comment
    About thirteen years ago, Deloitte embarked on a "Women's Initiative" to help female employees break the glass ceiling --- http://www.deloitte.com/dtt/section_node/0,1042,sid=2261,00.html

    Bob Jensen's accounting career helpers are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob1.htm#careers

    A great helper site for HDTV shoppers --- http://www.cnet.com/4520-7874_1-5102926-1.html

    Also see http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1760553/posts#comment?q=1

    "The HDTV Dilemma: Pay for TiVo's Recorder Or Settle for Cable's?" by Walter S. Mossberg, The Wall Street Journal, December 28, 2006; Page B1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/personal_technology.html

    If you just got a high-definition television, one of the best things you can buy to complement it is a digital video recorder, or DVR, the tapeless gadgets that save programs so you can watch them when you choose.

    The trouble is, it's hard to find a DVR that can record in high definition, so most people wind up simply going with the bare-bones high-definition DVR capability built into the set-top box supplied by their cable or satellite service.

    But TiVo, the pioneer in digital video recording, has recently entered the high-definition recorder market with a high-end, high-priced product. It's called the TiVo Series3 HD Digital Media Recorder and it sells for a whopping $800, as much as some HDTVs themselves. And that doesn't include the $12.95 a month it costs to subscribe to TiVo.

    I've been testing the new TiVo and I like it a lot, but it's hard to swallow that huge price, especially since the new Series3 model doesn't include some nice features available on the much cheaper Series2 version, which doesn't record in high definition. It also can't handle certain cable features.

    So, why not just stick with the high-definition DVR supplied by the cable company? After all, while it isn't free, it's cheaper than the TiVo.

    The answer is that, at least in my recent experience with the nation's biggest cable company, Comcast, the high-definition DVR it supplies is just awful. If cable boxes were sold at retail like consumer-electronics devices, the Comcast DVR I tested, built by Motorola, would get creamed by better competitors.

    My Comcast box, a Motorola DCT3412 I, which Comcast rents for about $12 a month, holds a maximum of 15 hours of high-definition programming or 60 hours of standard programming. The TiVo holds up to 35 hours of high-definition programs or up to 300 hours of standard.

    Also, the user interface on the Comcast box is crude and confusing -- nothing like the elegant interfaces people have become used to on their personal computers and devices like iPods. The TiVo interface, by contrast, is effective and attractive.

    The worst problem is that the Comcast box flubs the basic functions of a DVR. It is maddeningly slow at responding to commands sent by the remote control to pause, play, fast-forward and rewind. You press pause and nothing happens. So you press it again. You try to return to normal speed after fast-forwarding through commercials and the unit takes so long to obey your command that you badly overshoot the resumption of the program.

    This latency problem didn't affect just one dud of a Motorola box. In our home, we have four of these units, and three have the problem. All, of course, share the capacity limitations and user-interface problems.

    In the program grid, even on a 50-inch, high-definition screen with acres of room, the Comcast box displays just four rows of stations at a time. Until recently, there was a fifth row, but now that has been replaced by an ad. The ad not only sucks up space, but also is aggravating because it gets selected each time you reach the bottom of the grid screen.

    Advertising is fine, but in this case, sacrificing 20% of an already paltry information screen for an ad just shows contempt for users.

    By contrast, the basic TiVo grid shows eight rows of stations at a time, and offers an alternate view that packs in even more information using two vertical columns: one displaying stations and the other showing a list of shows scheduled in the coming hours.

    And, unlike the Comcast box, the TiVo Series3 can be programmed from a Web site, so if somebody at the office tells you about a great show, you can tell the TiVo to record it long before you get home. The new TiVo can also play music and display photos that are stored on Windows and Macintosh PCs on your home network. The Comcast box can't.

    But the TiVo also has some downsides. Unlike older TiVos, it's intended to replace, not complement, a cable box. So, installing it requires a visit from cable-company technicians to install gadgets called cable cards that plug into the back of the TiVo. In my case, that process took over two hours. Even worse, these cable cards don't support Comcast's on-demand feature, which allows you to see certain programs and movies whenever you choose.

    And the new Series3 lacks the capability of cheaper TiVos to let you transfer recorded shows to computers and portable devices.

    Also, unlike the Comcast box, the TiVo doesn't have a filtered grid display showing only high-definition shows, which is handy once you become addicted to HD.

    Fortunately, it may be possible to get some, but not all, of TiVo's superior features by just waiting. In 2007, Comcast and TiVo expect to roll out an option for downloading TiVo software to Comcast boxes. This would provide the TiVo interface without sacrificing Comcast features such as on demand. The pricing and details haven't been announced. Comcast is also working on other new user interfaces and features using non-TiVo technology.

    But, for now, the choice is tough. The Comcast high-definition DVR is a cheaper, but flawed product and the TiVo Series3 is an excellent, but overpriced one.

    "A New Prescription For Watching iPod Video:  We Test the Myvu Viewer And Like Its Big-Screen Effect; Juicing Up the Dork Factor," by Walter S. Mossberg and Katherine Boehret, The Wall Street Journal, December 27, 2006; Page D1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/the_mossberg_solution.html

    We tested the iPod-specific version and wore the Myvu to watch various types of videos, including music videos, television shows and movies. Overall, it's a pretty cool device, with a good-looking visual illusion that MicroOptical says is comparable to watching a 27-inch screen from six feet away. It would certainly come in handy on a long flight. But you'll scare yourself if you look in the mirror. We can't imagine wearing one while walking down the street, even though it's designed to enable seeing above and below the bar of space where its screen appears.

    MicroOptical isn't the only maker of a new video-viewing device, and competitors have proposed products that juice up the dork factor tenfold. One company proposed a device designed to strap around your head and hover over one eye. Another company, which introduced its Myvu-like technology at a recent conference, used a hefty interface box, partly because this unit is aimed at PCs and game consoles as well as portable players.

    A lot of this technology was developed for the military. Tank drivers, for example, used MicroOptical's technology so as to view information on a projection monitor while driving and remaining aware of their surroundings.

    Myvu comes with accessories to ensure that you're comfortable while using it, which makes sense, as a three-hour movie could really take its toll under the wrong conditions.

    Continued in article

    Walt Mossberg describes how to transfer contacts from Outlook to Outlook Express --- http://online.wsj.com/article/mossberg_mailbox.html

    Q: How can I transfer my contacts from my work computer's Outlook program to my home computer's Outlook Express program -- assuming that I can't directly connect the two computers by USB, wireless or other direct link?

    A: Using Outlook's Import and Export function, from the File menu, you would export the Contacts as a "Comma Separated Values" file, then save that to your hard disk. Next, copy this file to a USB thumb drive, or burn it to a blank CD. Then, take the thumb drive or CD home, insert it in your home PC, and copy the file to its hard disk. Then, fire up Outlook Express, open the address book, and select "Import" from the File menu. Choose "Other Address Book," then choose "Text File (Comma Separated Values)." Locate the file, and you should be able to import it.

    New Gadgets --- http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/15.01/play.html?pg=9

    The Lives They Lived (odd winners from the staff of The New York Times Magazine, December 31, 2006)
    This issue is largely an idiosyncratic selection, chosen by our editors and writers, who are often following their own passions and curiosities (generally not my choices) --- http://www.nytimes.com/pages/magazine/index.html

    How do scholars search for academic references?

    Scholarpedia Launches at the end of 2006

    From the University of Illinois Issues in Scholarly Communication blog on December 28, 2006 --- http://www.library.uiuc.edu/blog/scholcomm/

    Scholarpedia feels and looks like Wikipedia - the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit. Indeed, both are powered by the same program - MediaWiki. Both allow visitors to review and modify articles simply by clicking on the edit this article link.
    However, Scholarpedia differs from Wikipedia in some very important ways:
    • Each article is written by an expert (invited or elected by the public).
    • Each article is anonymously peer reviewed to ensure accurate and reliable information.
    • Each article has a curator - typically its author -- who is responsible for its content.
    • Any modification of the article needs to be approved by the curator before it appears in the final, approved version.

    …Currently, Scholarpedia hosts Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience, Encyclopedia of Dynamical Systems and Encyclopedia of Computational Intelligence. Although all three will eventually be published in a printed form, they will also remain freely available and modifiable online. (Producing a hard copy of each encyclopedia is important for archiving; besides, many academicians have a preconception that the prestige of an online article is not as high as that of a printed one.)

    If there is enough interest and support from the public, Scholarpedia will grow in the following directions:
    • The neuroscience chapter of Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience will be a seed to start Encyclopedia of Cognitive Neuroscience, and then Encyclopedia of Neuroscience
    • Encyclopedia of Dynamical Systems will be a seed to start Encyclopedia of Applied Mathematics, and then Encyclopedia of Mathematics.
    • Encyclopedia of Computational Intelligence will be a seed to start Encyclopedia of Computer Science.

    Read more at Scholarpedia --- http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/Main_Page

    From the University of Illinois Issues in Scholarly Communication blog on December 27, 2006 --- http://www.library.uiuc.edu/blog/scholcomm/

    The launch of the new PLoS ONE scholarly research portal looks like a big win for open access research content from a number of angles. PLoS ONE is posting research and will allow interactive review before and after publication for scientific articles via a very sophisticated publishing environment. The PLoS ONE platform applies many of the best practices of social media, providing ready access to comments posting and awareness of active discussions to draw in more active discussions. PLoS ONE will publish all papers that are judged to be rigorous and technically sound, and had already posted more an 100 papers by its launch - a remarkable number for a just-launched scholarly journal of any kind. By contrast Nature's recently shuttered open-review portal trial, which ran for around four months, attracted only 71 authors willing to post their work online and attracted 92 technical comments.

    As we noted in our latest news analysis article one of the keys to successful social media products is a dedicated core of trusted contributors who will be able to ensure editorial success. PLoS ONE starts with a global editorial board of more than 200 scholars, ensuring a broad array of inputs for reviewing content. Some of the fears about having content rejected after having had it exposed to comments prior to publication may be relieved by the PLoS ONE policy that allows papers that have been already rejected by PLoS Biology and Medicine journals to be re-submitted via PLoS ONE. This is a potentially valuable feature, allowing research that may not have yet reached the highest levels of acceptance to mature through its exposure to comments from a broader audience.

    PLoS ONE is finally opening the doors to the potential for fundamental changes in how scholarly research proves its worth. With an open exchange of ideas and commentary facilitated by technologies long available to the general public and a solid body of research and reviewers PLoS ONE holds out the potential to liberate the highest levels of scholarly innovation from the regimen of the printing press. Changing the way that research is paid for was a good first step for open access, but with the ability to eliminate artificial distribution bottlenecks that choke off natural conversations PLoS ONE may do for scholarly research what Wikipedia has done for reference materials - with much more integrity in the underlying editorial processes.

    John Blossom, Content Blogger 12/22/06

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

    How do scholars search for academic references?

    Scholarpedia --- http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/Main_Page

    PLoS One --- http://www.plosone.org/home.action

    Google Scholar --- http://scholar.google.com/
    Not to be confused with Google Advanced Search which does not cover many scholarly articles --- http://www.google.com/advanced_search?hl=en

    Microsoft's Windows "Live Search" or  "Academic Search" ---

    Amazon's A9 --- http://a9.com/-/search/advSearch 

    Beginning October 23, 2003, Amazon.com offers a text search of entire contents of millions of pages of books, including new books ---

    How It Works --- http://snurl.com/BookSearch 
    A significant extension of our groundbreaking Look Inside the Book feature, Search Inside the Book allows you to search millions of pages to find exactly the book you want to buy. Now instead of just displaying books whose title, author, or publisher-provided keywords that match your search terms, your search results will surface titles based on every word inside the book. Using Search Inside the Book is as simple as running an Amazon.com search. 

    Soon to be the largest scholarly library in the world:
    Google Book Search --- http://books.google.com/advanced_book_search 

    Answers.com --- http://www.answers.com/

    Wikipedia (heavily used by scholars in spite of authenticity risks)--- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%s

    Other Scholarly Search Engines (CrossRef and Scirus.) --- http://privateschool.about.com/b/a/116956.htm
    Also see http://www.library.uq.edu.au/internet/scholsearch.html

    Scholarly search tools

    • CiteBase
      Citebase is a trial service that allows researchers to search across free, full-text research literature ePrint archives, with results ranked according to criteria such as citation impact.


    • Gateway to ePrints
      A listing of ePrint servers and open access repository search tools.


    • Google Scholar
      A search tool for scholarly citations and abstracts, many of which link to full text articles, book chapters, working papers and other forms of scholarly publishing. It includes content from many open access journals and repositories.


    • OAIster
      A search tool for cross-archive searching of more than 540 separate digital collections and archives, including arXiv, CiteBase, ANU ePrints, ePrintsUQ, and others.


    • Scirus
      A search tool for online journals and Web sites in the sciences.

    UCLA Library Scholarly Search Helpers --- http://www2.library.ucla.edu/googlescholar/searchengines.cfm

    University of Kansas Scholarly Search Helpers --- http://www.lib.ku.edu/technology/searchengines/scholar.shtml

    Social scientists and business scholars often use SSRN (not free) --- http://www.ssrn.com/

    If you have access to a college library, most colleges generally have paid subscriptions to enormous scholarly literature databases that are not available freely online. Serious scholars obtain access to these vast literature databases.

    Librarian's Index to the Internet --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/searchh.htm#Librarian'sIndex

    Searching the Deep Web --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/searchh.htm#DeepWeb

    Open Access Shared Scholarship --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/updateee.htm#OKI

    University Channel (video and audio) ---  http://uc.princeton.edu/main/

    Bob Jensen's links to electronic literature, including free online textbooks and other learning materials --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/ElectronicLiterature.htm

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

    December 30, 2006 message from TranslationDirectory.com [onoshko@mail.uar.net]

    Dear Robert,

    We are sorry we are coming back to you so late - please forgive us the delay.

    This is to let you know we have published your glossary at


    Category: www.TranslationDirectory.com/glossaries.htm 

    Please verify if everything is fine for you.

    If you have other glossaries, please don't hesitate to submit them to us.

    Have a prosperous Year of 2007!


    Serhiy Onoshko

    Jensen Comment
    The online version at Bob Jensen's Website is at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/245gloss.htm

    Conduct U.S. Government Searches (including sites for buying goods and services from the Feds) --- http://www.firstgov.gov/

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

    Free Merriam Webster Online Dictionary/Thesaurus --- http://www.m-w.com/

    Employees don't leave their job or company, they leave their boss

    "Study: Poor managers create big problems," Arizona Daily Sun, January 2, 2006 --- http://www.azdailysun.com/articles/2007/01/02/news/20070102_news_17.txt

    For most people, it's back to work Tuesday after a holiday weekend with family and friends. And for many, a new study shows, it will be under a bad boss.

    Nearly two of five bosses don't keep their word and more than a fourth bad mouth those they supervise to co-workers, the Florida State University study shows.

    And those all-too-common poor managers create plenty of problems for companies as well, leading to poor morale, less production and higher turnover.

    "They say that employees don't leave their job or company, they leave their boss," said Wayne Hochwarter, an associate professor of management in the College of Business at Florida State University, who joined with two doctoral students at the school to survey more than 700 people working in a variety of jobs about how their bosses treat them.

    "No abuse should be taken lightly, especially in situations where it becomes a criminal act," said Hochwarter.

    Employees stuck in an abusive relationship experienced more exhaustion, job tension, nervousness, depressed moods and mistrust, the researchers found. They found that a good working environment is often more important than pay, and that it's no coincidence that poor morale leads to lower production.

    "They (employees) were less likely to take on additional tasks, such as working longer or on weekends, and were generally less satisfied with their job," the study found. "Also, employees were more likely to leave if involved in an abusive relationship than if dissatisfied with pay."

    The results of the study are scheduled for publication in the Fall 2007 issue of The Leadership Quarterly, a journal read by consultants, managers and executives.

    The findings include:

    39 percent of workers said their supervisor failed to keep promises.

    37 percent said their supervisor failed to give credit when due.

    31 percent said their supervisor gave them the "silent treatment" in the past year.

    27 percent said their supervisor made negative comments about them to other employees or managers.

    24 percent said their supervisor invaded their privacy.

    23 percent said their supervisor blamed others to cover up mistakes or to minimize embarrassment.

    Workers in bad situations should remain optimistic, Hochwarter said.

    "It is important to stay positive, even when you get irritated or discouraged, because few subordinate-supervisor relationships last forever," he said. "You want the next boss to know what you can do for the company."

    And workers should know where to turn if they feel threatened, harassed or discriminated against, whether it is the company's grievance committee or finding formal representation outside the employer.

    "Others know who the bullies are at work," Hochwarter said. "They likely have a history of mistreating others."

    Hochwarter also recommended some methods to minimize the harm caused by an abusive supervisor.

    "The first is to stay visible at work," he said. "Hiding can be detrimental to your career, especially when it keeps others in the company from noticing your talent and contributions."

    The survey was conducted by mail. Workers surveyed included men and women of various ages and races in the service industry and manufacturing, from companies large and small, Hochwarter said.

    "The Year in Infotech:  Technology Review picks the year's most significant advances in information technology," by Kate Greene, MIT's Technology Review, December 26, 2006 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/InfoTech/17937/

    The way we use technology is changing. A few years ago, static e-commerce sites made up much of the Internet. But now, video is taking over, and people's viewing habits are evolving. More people are searching online for video, creating, sharing, and editing it than ever before, and these activities are driving a slew of new software applications and hardware innovations. Below, we've chosen six of this year's most compelling information-technology stories, many of which relate to our culture's newfound addiction to a novel type of video experience.

    Image and video search. When Google bought YouTube in October, the Internet search giant gave credibility to the burgeoning world of online video. But one fact still remains: finding a particular video clip can be difficult using a traditional search engine. This year, a number of academic and commercial enterprises tried to improve image and video search. Photo-sharing website Riya released face-recognition software that allows people to search through their photo collections by face. Later in the year, the company released Like.com, a site that lets people search for shoes, handbags, and watches by scouring the Web for similar pictures. Researchers at Pennsylvania State University made headway on automatically tagging images, and a group at the University of Leeds used cues from face-recognition software, closed captions, and original programming scripts to identify faces that appear in episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

    Mobile-phone projectors. While mobile devices have lots of storage space for pictures and videos, the small screen still makes viewing media awkward. But that could soon change. Clearly, Nokia understands the importance of implementing projection systems for mobile phones. Researchers at Cornell University are working on tiny microelectromechanical systems to create small, efficient projectors. And Microvision, of Redmond, WA, gave Technology Review a preview of its mobile-phone projector system, slated for display at next year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

    Geotagging. GPS is becoming a more common feature in mobile phones, cameras, and cars. The result is a world of people, pictures, cars, and data trails on maps. A Microsoft research project aggregates disparate sensor data to map the world in real time. Online photo-sharing site Flickr now lets people tag their photos with the name of the location where they were shot, allowing people to search for photos by geography. And Nokia is working on a project to link the physical world to the Internet via mobile phones, and GPS itself is improving its reliability.

    Tools for content creation and sharing. In the past year, podcasts, online photo albums, homemade videos, and blogs have bloomed all over the Internet, and many were made by regular people just looking for their 15 megabytes of fame. A blizzard of new software and content-sharing sites has allowed for this proliferation. Yahoo Answers lets anyone be an expert by answering questions posed by others. More people are blogging from mobile phones. And video-editing software is migrating from the desktop to the Web, allowing people to interact and participate in a medium that has been closed to the average person for decades.

    Continued in article


    The New Internet Sales Tax
    Indiana, New Jersey, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Vermont, West Virginia and more than a dozen other states have been busy laying the groundwork for an Internet sales tax regime that will charge consumers based on where they live, not where they click to when shopping online. And the system is already up and partially running . . . But never underestimate the determination of politicians to impose a new tax. The Supreme Court left open the possibility of dispensing with the brick and mortar test if complying with various sales taxes could be made dramatically easier. So six years ago the National Governor's Association, the National Conference of State Legislatures and other politicians seeking more of your money founded a new organization to oversee the mammoth effort of aligning sales taxes across state lines. And the group--the Streamlined Sales Tax Governing Board--has made a lot of headway. 
    "Attention, Online Shoppers:  State politicians are creating a de facto national sales tax," The Wall Street Journal, December 23, 2006 --- http://www.opinionjournal.com/weekend/hottopic/?id=110009429

    Possible New Internet Tax

    "The Virtual Taxman Cometh," by Clive Thompson, Wired News, December 18, 2006 --- http://www.wired.com/news/columns/0,72317-0.html?tw=wn_index_25

    Every time you go online and kill monsters, you're creating value as surely as if you were working a shift at Starbucks. A few years back, the economist Edward Castronova stunned the game world by deducing that people playing Everquest made more than $3 an hour in real-world value by playing the game -- which gave Everquest a per-capita gross domestic product nearly as big as Russia's. WoW's economy is easily as big as that now, or larger.

    Things are even more intense in a world like Second Life, because publisher Linden Labs explicitly lets you own in-game property and create new in-game objects to sell to others.

    Almost everyone agrees these days that if you "cash out" -- and sell a valuable avatar or big stash of gold on eBay, exchanging virtual goods for real greenbacks -- you owe taxes on the profit. That's not news.

    But what about stuff that stays inside the game? If you played WoW for three years and racked up $4,000 worth of avatars and gold, but never cashed out -- should you still be paying annual taxes on your increased value, as if it were income? This is where the rubber hits the road, because the profits currently locked up inside these worlds are becoming big enough -- hundreds of millions at least, and maybe billions -- that they are a juicy target for the IRS.

    "It'll get to the point where the dollar value becomes so sizeable that the IRS would be almost negligent if it didn't at least look into the potential of taxing these worlds," says Dan Miller, a senior economist for the Joint Economic Committee, a congressional think tank that recommends policy to lawmakers. "It's really just a matter of time before the IRS says, wait a minute."

    Continued in article

    December 20, 2006 message from David Albrecht

    I just finished assigning grades, and am looking for something to do. It seems as if PCWorld has come to the rescue at: http://www.pcworld.com/article/id,128122/article.html?tk=nl_wbxnws 

    Now, if Bob Jensen would just publish his list of the Internet's 15 best time wasters.

    Dave Albrecht
    Bowling Green State University

    December 21, 2006 reply from Bob Jensen

    Hi David,

    Actually David I have 12,637 time wasters for you!

    At my age it's rumored that any mental activity helps the brain forestall senility. I never fool with video and computer games because I don't consider them to be much in the way of mental activity. At best they relieve boredom, but I find them more boring than watching paint dry.

    Medical studies suggest that mental activity is overrated for keeping the brain healthy. Physical activity on the other hand is underrated. For example, given a choice between a five mile walk and two hours with crossword puzzles while waiting for your next flight, the five mile walk up and down the concourse is much better for the brain.

    However, five mile walks generally get boring relative to the many exciting things we can do on a computer. Especially boring is a five mile walk on a treadmill. I have a television set in front of my treadmill, but TV is so boring that a five mile walk in front of the TV is still agonizing boredom.

    I prefer to walk in the mountains, but then I feel great guilt thinking of all the Tidbits that did not get written because I hiked in the hills.

    Given that physical activity is so good for the brain, I force myself to go through this boring activity almost daily. I can't call it a time waster because it is so healthy even though it feels like a time waster. Probably the biggest time waster is that time we spend trying to be creative such as the time I waste trying to write poetry or fiction. This is a labor of love that generally ends up in what Microsoft deceptively calls a "recycle bin." My most creative efforts wind up in the "emptied" recycle bin.

    The beauty of having chosen to be professor is that my university gave me an enormous amount of free time for creativity efforts (better known as time wasters). But Jon Bon Jovi gave me hope when he said: 

    Success is falling nine times and getting up ten.
    Jon Bon Jovi --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jon_Bon_Jovi

    Note that Bon Jovi made no claim that you will succeed the next time you get up even though it's your tenth try or try number 12,637. (Sigh!)

    Even if all our creative efforts end up in the emptied recycle bin, I guess they weren't really time wasters because of what we learned a lot while trying to be creative. Video and computer games generally are true time wasters since they do not inspire creative effort. I realize that I'm overstating here because there are a few edutainment games that inspire creativity --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/000aaa/thetools.htm#Edutainment

    So my advice David is to try to write a serious poem or solve one of the unsolved math problems of which there are 12,637 to date --- http://mathworld.wolfram.com/UnsolvedProblems.html
    When you're not doing this take a hike! Who knows. Maybe the solution to one of those 12,637 math problems may come to mind while you're walking in the park.

    Bob Jensen

    Make that 12,636 unsolved math problems instead of 12,637
    Grigori Perelman, in articles published on the Internet more than three years ago, claimed to have solved Poincare's conjecture, a mathematical puzzle identified in 1904 by the French mathematician Henri Poincare, the Independent said Friday. His proposed solutions to the conjecture were validated by other mathematicians in the field of topology, which is the science of surfaces. "While bringing new results to topology, Perelman's work brought new techniques to geometry," said Science in announcing the award. "It cemented the central role of geometric evolution equations, powerful machinery for transforming hard-to-work-with spaces into more-manageable ones." Earlier this year, Perelman won the highest honor in mathematics, the Fields Medal, but refused to accept it, and a separate $1 million prize offered by the Clay Mathematics Institute in Massachusetts. Perelman lives in St. Petersburg.

    "A Russian mathematician's solution to a 100-year-old math puzzle was voted Breakthrough of the Year by Science, a leading scientific journal," MIT's Technology Review, December 22, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news86022171.html



    Well I can't always be correct: 
    Perhaps video games aren’t such time wasters even though I hate them as much as physical exercise
    Seniors should fold the cards in favor of video games to keep mentally sharp, Canadian researchers suggest. Psychology research McMaster University in Hamilton showed senior gamers who spend at least four hours a week playing action video games display an array of skills, the Toronto Star said Thursday. Doing battle in Medal of Honor drew out skills such as improved reaction times and good spatial reasoning to a awareness of their surroundings and better short-term memory. "Just as an elderly adult may do 15 minutes of weight training to fight osteoporosis, so could he or she play video games to keep the mind sharp," said psychology researcher Jim Karle, a graduate student in the university's department of psychology, neuroscience and behavior.
    "Forget teenagers -- seniors got game," PhysOrg, December 22, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news86014047.html


    A recent article stresses how mental activity may forestall Alzheimer's

    Perhaps not too surprisingly, the study suggests however that the most effective neuroprotective therapy for Alzheimer's disease may well not be a pill, but education and intellectual activity. Mounting evidence accumulated over the last few years supports the notion that intellectual activity increases what neuroscientists call "the cognitive reserve".  According to the model, a mere 5% increase in the cognitive reserve in the general population would prevent one third of Alzheimer's cases. Dr de la Fuente-Fernandez, a neurologist at the Hospital A. Marcide in Ferrol (Spain), points out that public health policies aimed at implementing higher levels of education in the general population are likely the best strategy for preventing Alzheimer's disease.

     "Education -- the best pill of all for preventing Alzheimer's?" PhysOrg, December 20, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news85859731.html
    Jensen Comment
    If you have two hours to burn before your next flight, perhaps it is best to use half of it walking up and down the concourse and the other half working crossword puzzles, especially if there's old man Alzheimer in your family history.

    But for the younger generation electronic toys are rarely educational and often a little terrifying

    Industry analysts expect toy manufacturers to enjoy considerable sales gains this year, much of it fueled by consumers' purchase of expensive electronic toys like Robosapien, as well as "educational" electronic toys from companies like LeapFrog. Whether they're hoping to give their infants and toddlers an academic head start, or just entertain them, parents will have plenty of choices this holiday season. Six of the top ten FamilyFun award winning toys are electronic. But two recent studies suggest that the oft-touted educational benefits of such toys are illusory, and child development experts caution that kiddie electronics, even those bought purely for fun, can have negative side effects such as inhibiting creativity and promoting short attention spans.
    Christine Rosen, "Too Many Batteries Included:  Electronic toys are rarely educational and often a little terrifying," The Wall Street Journal, Friday, December 22, 2006 --- http://opinionjournal.com/taste/?id=110009421



    From The Washington Post on January 2, 2006


  • What is the subject of a database France's space agency said it will publish online?

    A. Comets
    B. Meteorite impacts
    C. Space walkers
    D. UFO sightings


    "What's the Best Q&A Site?" by Wade Roush, MIT's Technology Review, December 22, 2006 --- http://www.technologyreview.com/InfoTech/17932/ 


    Everyone knows a lot about something, whether it's quasars, quilting, or crayons. But the converse is also true: there are a lot of things that most people know nothing about. And unfortunately, that doesn't seem to stop them from sharing their opinions.

    That's one lesson I took away from my recent survey of the growing collection of social question-and-answer websites, where members can post questions, answer other members' questions, and rate other members' answers to their questions--all for free. The Wikipedia-like, quintessentially Web 2.0 premise of these ventures--which include Yahoo Answers, Microsoft's Live QnA, AnswerBag, Yedda, Wondir, and Amazon's new Askville--is that the average citizen is an untapped well of wisdom.

    But it takes a lot of sifting to get truly useful information from these sites. Each boasts a core of devoted members who leave thorough and well-documented answers to the questions they deem worthy. And most of the sites have systems for rating the performance or experience of answerers, which makes it easier to assess their reliability, while also inspiring members to compete with one another to give the best answers. But not all of the Q&A sites do this equally well; after all, the companies that run these sites are selling advertising space, not information.

    In an attempt to flush out the best of the bunch, I've spent the past few days trying to identify what unique advantages each one offers. I also devised a diabolically difficult, two-part test. First, I searched each site's archive for existing answers to the question "Is there any truth to the five-second rule?" (I meant the rule about not eating food after it's been on the floor for more than five seconds, not the basketball rule about holding.)

    Second, I posted the same two original questions at each site: "Why did the Mormons settle in Utah?" and "What is the best way to make a grilled cheese sandwich?" The first question called for factual, historical answers, while the second simply invited people to share their favorite sandwich-making methods and recipes. I awarded each site up to three points for the richness and originality of its features, and up to three points for the quality of the answers to my three questions, for a total of 12 possible points.

    The Results:
    1. AnswerBag --- http://www.answerbag.com/ 
    2. Askville --- http://askville.amazon.com/askville/Index.do#answers
    3. Live QnA --- http://qna.live.com/
    4. Wondir --- http://www.wondir.com/wondir/jsp/index.jsp
    5. Yahoo Answers --- http://answers.yahoo.com/
    6. Yedda --- http://yedda.com/


    Features: Launched in 2003, AnswerBag is one of the oldest Q&A sites. Members get points for asking and answering questions as well as for rating other members' questions and answers. After earning a certain number of points, members "level up" from Beginner to Novice, Contributor, Wiz, Authority, Expert, and ultimately Professor. Bloggers or webmasters can embed customized AnswerBag "widgets" in their own pages, so that visitors to a site about restoring antiques, for example, can ask AnswerBag members questions about restoration. Points: 1

    Is there any truth to the five-second rule? All of AnswerBag's answers about the five-second rule pertained to basketball. Points: 0

    Why did the Mormons settle in Utah? By press time--two and a half days after I posted the question--I had received only one answer at AnswerBag. Here it is, edited for brevity (like all the answers quoted here): "The church believes that God directed Brigham Young, Joseph Smith's successor as President of the Church, to call for the Mormons to organize and migrate west, beyond the western frontier of the United States to start their own community away from traditional American society." That's more or less in line with the best answers to this question at other sites. Points: 1

    What is the best way to make a grilled cheese sandwich? I rated the answers to this question purely according to their mouthwateringness. The best AnswerBag answer, out of six: "Grate cheddar cheese or similiar [sic] and then add about a quarter of the same amount of Lancashire, cheshire or similiar [sic] crumbly white cheese. Mix them together with a couple of spoonfuls of milk until the consistency goes like thick cottage cheese. Add lots of black pepper. Spread on lightly toasted buttered bread and put back under the grill until the cheese melts and is golden brown. Delish." Points: 2

    Continued in article



    Jensen Comment
    None of these free services is very good for accounting questions. For me, Wondir did better with accounting questions than the other alternatives, but none of these sites would be very helpful in answering questions about accounting and tax rules.


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



    Magellan Metasearch --- http://sourceforge.net/projects/magellan2/ 
    Metasearch Tool for the Techie Types 


    Magellan is a perl, CGI-based meta search engine, aimed at being highly evolutive. It provides an extended query language that enables it to perform complex requests and check the results before showing them.

    Bob Jensen's threads on OLAP, XML, and XBRL --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/XBRLandOLAP.htm 




    University Channel (video and audio) ---  http://uc.princeton.edu/main/


    The University Channel makes videos of academic lectures and events from all over the world available to the public. It is a place where academics can air their ideas and present research in a full-length, uncut format. Contributors with greater video production capabilities can submit original productions.

    The University Channel presents ideas in a way commercial news or public affairs programming cannot. Because it is neither constrained by time nor dependent upon commercial feedback, the University Channel's video content can be broad and flexible enough to cover the full gamut of academic investigation.

    While it has unlimited potential, the University Channel begins with a focus on public and international affairs, because this is an area which lends itself most naturally to a many-sided discussion. Perhaps of greatest advantage to universities who seek to expand their dialog with overseas institutions and international affairs, the University Channel can "go global" and become a truly international forum.

    The University Channel aims to become, literally, a "channel" for important thought, to be heard in its entirety. Television has become so much a part of the fabric of our world that it should be more than an academic interest. It should be an academic tool.

    The University Channel project is an initiative of Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, which is leading the effort to build university membership and distribution partners. Technical support, advice and services are provided through the generosity of Princeton University's Office of Information Technology. Digital video solutions courtesy of Princeton Server Group.

    Bob Jensen's threads on podcasting, Apple's iPod U, RSS, RDF are at http://www.trinity.edu/~rjensen/245glosf.htm#ResourceDescriptionFramework
    Also see http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/music.htm#Video

    The Internet as a Resource for News and Information about Science --- 


    Bob Jensen's bookmarks for the sciences are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob2.htm


    Current state of scholarly cyberinfrastructure in the humanities and social sciences


    From the University of Illinois Issues in Scholarly Communication Blog


    "Our Cultural Commonwealth"

    The American Council of Learned Societies has just issued a report, "Our Cultural Commonwealth," assessing the current state of scholarly cyberinfrastructure in the humanities and social sciences and making a series of recommendations on how it can be strengthened, enlarged and maintained in the future.

    John Unsworth, Dean and Professor, Graduate School of Library and Information Science here at Illinois, chaired the Commission that authored the report.

    The report is at http://www.acls.org/cyberinfrastructure/

    Bob Jensen's bookmarks for humanities and social sciences are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob2.htm



    Eurostat --- http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/


    Bob Jensen's threads on statistical data --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/Bookbob1.htm#EconStatistics


    China Leadership Monitor
    --- http://www.hoover.org/publications/clm/



    A Historically Accurate Indicator of Economic Change for the U.S. May Not Apply Anymore
    An index of spot metals prices, compiled by the Commodities Research Bureau and Reuters, has been around for a quarter-century. It concentrates on metals that move the fastest when economic conditions change, and that has made it volatile. . . . For the United States, struggling with sharp downturns in housing and car sales, the lesson may be that it no longer rules the world economy. An American recession used to bring on lower commodity prices, which could help stimulate demand. This time, it might not have such an impact unless the newly important Asian economies also turn down.
    Floyd Norris, "A Historically Accurate Indicator for the U.S. May Not Apply Anymore," The New York Times, December 23, 2006 --- Click Here


    Controversies about tenure in the humanities and books that even libraries will not order

    "The Philadelphia Story," by Scott McLemee, Inside Higher Ed, December 20, 2006 --- http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2006/12/20/mclemee 

    The expression “Internet year” refers to a period of about two or three months — an index of the pace of life online, in what the sociologist Manuel Castells has called the “space without a place” created by new media.

    That means a decade has passed since Inside Higher Ed made its first appearance at the Modern Language Association, during the 2004 convention held in Philadelphia. So next week is a kind of homecoming. I’ll be in Philadelphia starting on Tuesday and will not return home until sometime late on Saturday — and hope to meet as many readers of Intellectual Affairs as possible along the marathon route in between.

    The whole “space without a place” quality of online experience can, at times, prove more anomic than utopian. So here’s a thought: Inside Higher Ed will have a booth (#326) in the exhibit hall. I’ll be there each afternoon between 2 and 4. Please consider this an invitation to stop by and say hello.

    Tell me what you’re reading lately.... What sessions have blown your mind, or left you cursing under your breath.... Whether you think the report on tenure is going to make any difference or not.... What magazines or journals or blogs you read that I have probably never heard of....

    And, by the way, if I ask you if you’ve heard any really interesting papers during the week, please don’t then go, “OK, what’s hot nowadays?” If I want to know what’s hot, I’ll go ask Paris Hilton. This peculiar insistence on mimicking the ethos of Hollywood (talking about “academostars,” “buzz,” hunting for the “hot new trend,” etc.) sometimes makes it seem as if Adorno was an optimist.

    To put it another way: I’d much rather know what you’ve found interesting at MLA (and why) than hear you try to guess at what other people now think is exciting. Please come by the booth. But if you use the word “hot,” I hope it is only in the context of recommending someplace to get a burrito.

    That sort of ersatz fashion-mongering is less a problem than a symptom. Lindsay Waters, the executive editor for the humanities at Harvard University Press, has been complaining for some time about the structural imperative for overproduction in some parts of the humanities — a situation in which people are obliged to publish books, whether they have anything to say or not. And when scholarly substance declines as a definitive criterion for what counts as important, then hipness, hotness, and happeningness take up the slack.

    “Few libraries will buy many of the books published now by university presses with booths at the MLA convention,” wrote Waters in an essay appearing in the May 2000 issue of PMLA. “Why should tenure be connected to the publication of books that most of the profession do not feel are essential holdings for their local libraries?”

    He brooded over that question at somewhat more length in Enemies of Promise: Publishing, Perishing, and the Eclipse of Scholarship, a pamphlet issued by Prickly Paradigm Press a couple of years ago. You hear quite a few echoes of the booklet in the recommendations of the MLA task force on tenure. “Scholarship,” as the final report puts it, “should not be equated with publication, which is, at bottom, a means to make scholarship public, just as teaching, service, and other activities are directed toward different audiences. Publication is not the raison d’être of scholarship; scholarship should be the raison d’etre of publication.”

    Well, yes. But you’ve got the whole problem of the optative, right there — the complex and uncertain relationship between “ought” and “is.” (Sorry, had a neo-Kantian flashback for a second there.) The real problem is: How do you get them to line up?

    The task force makes numerous recommendations – some discussed here. I thought it would be interesting to find out what Waters thought of the report. “It does talk about a lot of the problems honestly,” he told me, “including the shift to part-time labor.” But his reservations seem a lot more emphatic.

    “My fear for the MLA report,” he wrote by e-mail, “ is that it will be shelved like the report of the Iraq Study Group. And there may be another similarity: The ISG made a mistake with Bush. They gave him 79 recommendations, not one. This report runs that risk, too. Like my Enemies book, the report offers up ideas that it will suit many to ignore.... Churchill said it so well — the Americans will do the right thing only after they have exhausted all the other possibilities. The problem is that this relatively frail creature, the university, has survived so well for so long in the US because for the most part it was located in a place where, like poetry (to cite the immortal Auden) executives would never want to tamper. But they are tampering now. And they are using the same management techniques on the university that they used on General Motors, and they may have the same deadly effect.”

    Worrying about the long-term future of the life of the mind is demanding. Still, you’ve still got to pack your luggage eventually, and make plans for how to spend time at the conference. MLA is like a city within a city. No accident that the program always looks a little like a phone directory.

    It contains a great deal of information – and it’s well-organized, in its way. But it can also be kind of bewildering to browse through. It seems like a salutary development that people have, over the past couple of years, started posting online lists of the sessions they want to attend. It’s the next best thing to having a friend or trusted colleague make recommendations. Here is an example.

    If you’ve already posted something about your conference-going itinerary, please consider using the comments section here to link to it. For that matter, if you’ve noticed one or two sessions that you consider not-to-be-missed, why not say so? Consider the space below a kind of bulletin board.

    One tip I hope you’ll consider (despite the beastly hour of it) is the panel called “Meet the Bloggers.” It is scheduled for Saturday, December 30th, at 8:30 in the morning. The list of speakers includes Michael Bérubé, John Holbo, Scott Kaufman, and the professor known as Bitch, Ph.D.

    For abstracts, go here. I will also be on the panel, commenting on the papers afterwards. That is, assuming I can get an intravenous caffeine drip.

    There is a nice bit of synchronicity about the date that the program committee scheduled “Meet the Bloggers.” For it will be the anniversary (second or tenth, depending on how you count it) of “Bloggers in the Flesh” — an article that appeared well before anyone in MLA thought of organizing a panel on the topic.

    A lot has happened in the meantime — including a sort of miniature equivalent (confined entirely to academe) of what sociologists call a “moral panic.” For a while there, blogging became a suspicious activity that threatened to weaken your scholarly reputation, ruin your job prospects, and cause thick, coarse hair to grow upon your palms.

    It all seems kind of silly in retrospect. No doubt the level of discussion will be much higher at the panel. I hope some of you will make it. But even if not, please consider stopping by to say hello at the IHE booth, any afternoon between 2 and 4.


    Bob Jensen's threads about this bold new tenure-change and dissertation requirement change movement in humanities are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/HigherEdControversies.htm#MLA



    "Demystifying Lenses Focal length, zoom, f-numbers--if you've wondered about it, we discuss it," Dave Johnson, PC World via The Washington Post, December 12, 2006 --- Click Here

  • When a good friend of mine recently purchased an inexpensive digital SLR, I knew that something fundamental in the fabric of space and time had changed: This is the guy who always used a point-and-shoot camera and never would have considered a film SLR.

    So what has changed? To be honest, I'm not sure. Perhaps it's that digital SLRs are a lot easier to use and often require less effort to take better pictures than their film cousins. Whatever the explanation, a lot of people are making the switch to digital SLRs these days.

    But no matter how easy-to-use digital SLRs become, some things won't change much. Take lenses, for example: I get tons of questions about how to purchase and use the myriad lenses available for today's digital SLRs. So this week I thought I'd answer the top questions I get about interchangeable lenses.

    The technical answer is that the focal length is the distance from the lens to the point at which light passing through the lens is focused, measured in millimeters. In more practical (and understandable) terms, the focal length tells you the magnifying power of the lens. A small focal length of up to about 35mm is considered wide angle; focal lengths between 35mm and 70mm are considered normal, because this range approximates what the human eye sees; and anything beyond 80mm gets into telephoto territory.

    You might hear the term prime bandied about when discussing camera lenses. A prime lens is simply any lens that only has a single focal length, whereas a zoom lens has range of focal lengths, such as 12-24mm, 70-300mm, or 18-200mm.

    Zoom lenses are obviously more convenient to use, but there are engineering trade-offs involved in a lens that can move through a wide range of focal lengths. Prime lenses perform better--and they are less expensive.

    Serious photographers tend to carry a few prime lenses in common focal ranges, but the rest of us get by with one or two zoom lenses that cover the whole gamut.

    All camera lenses have a maximum aperture setting--in other words, how big an opening the lens can make to admit light during exposure. The smaller the number, the larger the opening will be.

    Engineering compromises mean that many zoom lenses can't open as wide as you might like. My nifty 18-200mm zoom, for example, offers enough wide- and telephoto oomph to cover 90 percent of the photographic situations I usually encounter. But set to wide angle, it has an f-number of f/3.5. When I zoom all the way to 200mm, it degrades to f/5.6. Compare that to some 200mm prime lenses that can open up to f/20, and you can see that there's a lot less light available to shoot pictures with my zoom. That means fast-moving subjects will blur unless I increase the ISO or shoot in the middle of the day when there's plenty of sunlight available.

    All things being equal, the lens that offers a bigger aperture (the smallest f-number) is always the better choice--and it will always be more expensive.

    Not especially.

    Some people are surprised to find that there isn't a standard diameter among interchangeable camera lenses. My 18-200mm lens has a diameter of 72mm, for instance, while my 80-400mm lens has a 77mm diameter. Generally, telephoto lenses need more glass to be able to collect more light. The size of any given lens is the result of many design decisions, however, and not something to consider in your buying criteria.

    Continued in article


    Digital Photography Tutorials --- http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials.htm

    More workers than ever before have observed ethical misconduct in the workplace.
    According to a recent survey, more workers than ever before have observed ethical misconduct in the workplace. However, the same study reports that fewer employees are reporting the bad behavior they witness. David Gebler, President of Working Values, explains why corporate culture is the leading risk factor for compromising integrity and compliance today and how a cultural risk assessment can minimize those dangers. FAST FACT: Ethics guru Gebler acknowledges that there is often a gap or a 'disconnect' between the expectations that are created by the organization's leadership, and the way things are actually done in the trenches. He counsels companies to identify the types of pressures their employees face, in order to help people engage in ethical behavior, including reporting incidents of "bad" behavior.
    "Good People Do Bad Things: Is Your Culture a Risk Factor?" SmartPros, December 18, 2006 --- Click Here

    Bob Jensen's threads on the sad state of whistle blowing are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudConclusion.htm#WhistleBlowing


    Where were the auditors?
    Firms cook the books to set executive pay
    And these same executives are protesting Sarbanes-Oxley



    "Firms cook the books to set executive pay," Editorial, The New York Times, December 19, 23006 --- http://www.sptimes.com/2006/12/19/Opinion/Firms_cook_the_books_.shtml

    Among the corporate deceits that buttress America's obscene executive pay is the one about comparability. But a new federal rule may help expose the reality of so-called "peer groups." Far too often, the list of comparable CEOs is cooked.

    As the New York Times reported in its latest installment on executive pay, former New York Stock Exchange chairman Richard Grasso was a poster child for the abuse. His $140-million compensation package was rationalized, in part, by comparing his job to those at companies with median revenues 25 times the size of the exchange, assets 125 times and employee bases 30 times the size.

    Grasso was hardly alone. Executives have learned that the path to personal riches is paved by "peer groups" that include big and profitable companies. Eli Lilly compared itself to eight companies that had much higher profit margins. Campbell Soup used one set of companies for executive pay and a separate one as a benchmark for stock performance. Ford Motor Co. compared itself to other industries, its proxy statement said, because "the job market for executives goes beyond the auto industry."

    The "job market" argument is particularly disingenuous. As the New York Times noted, ousted Hewlett-Packard chief executive Carly Fiorina was replaced by a data processing executive who was earning less than half her pay. His company, NCR, never appeared on the Hewlett-Packard "peer group."

    The growth in executive pay has been so meteoric in the past quarter-century that it is demeaning the contributions of average workers and undermining public faith in corporate America. Last year, according to the Corporate Library, the average pay for an S&P 500 chief executive was $13.5-million. The average CEO now earns 411 times the average worker, up from 42 times in 1980.

    The new Securities and Exchange Commission disclosure rules went into effect on Friday, and compensation consultants are scrambling to cover their tracks. But stockholders who have been kept mostly in the dark will now at least have a chance to see the playbook. That's the first step toward ending these games of executive greed.

    Bob Jensen's fraud updates are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm


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


    Bob Jensen's threads on fraudulent and incompetent auditing are at http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudConclusion.htm#IncompetentAudits



    United Nations Environment Programme: The Billion Tree Campaign ---




    There is not the slightest doubt that sustainable development is one of the most destructive concepts.
    Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen (1906-1994) --- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicholas_Georgescu-Roegen


    "The Lingering Stench of Malthus:  Debunking Jeremy Rifkin's beef with cities," by Ronald Bailey, Reason Magazine, December 22, 2006 --- http://www.reasonmag.com/news/show/117481.html


    The majority of human beings are living in cities for the first time in history. Hurray! As the Renaissance Germans said, "Stadtluft macht frei," or "City air makes you free." But not everyone is pleased. Jeremy Rifkin, the president of the leftist Foundation on Economic Trends, recently wrote an op/ed entitled "The Risks of Too Much City" in the Washington Post. Mostly it's filled with vacuous platitudes about "sustainability," but he does decry the growth of cities. "In the great era of urbanization we have increasingly shut off the human race from the rest of the natural world in the belief that we could conquer, colonize and utilize the riches of the planet to ensure our autonomy without dire consequences to us and future generations," he declares. Of course that's exactly what we've done and it's a good thing too.

    Rikfin's concern about humanity's alienation from nature has a long pedigree. The foremost philosophical proponent was Jean-Jacques Rousseau who argued that man's natural goodness has been corrupted by civilization, the myth of the "Noble Savage." Romantic poet William Wordsworth penned the lines, "Nature never did betray, The Heart that Loved her." Rifkin himself paints a picture of a prelapsarian idyll. "As long as the human race had to rely on solar flow, the winds and currents, and animal and human power to sustain life, the population remained relatively low to accommodate nature's carrying capacity: the biosphere's ability to recycle waste and replenish resources," he writes.

    But let's look behind Rifkin's rhetoric. Why, until a couple of centuries ago, did human population remain, as Rifkin so delicately puts it, "relatively low?" Mostly because of the "positive checks" on population growth identified by economist Thomas Robert Malthus in his Essay on the Principle of Population, e.g., famine, disease, and war. As a result of these "checks" economic historian Angus Maddison estimates that in 1800 average life expectancy in France was about 30 years and 36 years in Britain. In the 18th century infant mortality was so great in cities that they grew chiefly by means of migration from the countryside. In other words, nature constantly betrayed humanity.

    But that began to change in the 19th century. As Karl Marx noted in The Communist Manifesto, bourgeois capitalism fueled the growth of cities and "thus rescued a considerable part of the population from the idiocy of rural life." History has shown that people prefer the opportunities and excitement of city life to rural idiocy. And the former country idiots are voting with their feet. While some people may be pushed by war or drought, or poverty into cities, most people today are pulled in by the prospect of reinventing themselves, escaping from the narrow strictures of family, class and community, and a shot at really making it.

    As humanity has urbanized, we have become ever less subject to nature's vagaries. For instance, a globally interconnected world made possible by the transportation networks between cities means that a crop failure in one place can be overcome by food imports from areas with bumper crops. Similarly resources of all types can be shifted quickly to ameliorate human emergencies caused by the random acts of a brutal insensate nature. Autonomy is just another word for freedom.

    The further good news is that the movement of humanity's burgeoning population into the thousand of megacities foreseen that Rifkin is part of a process that ultimately will leave more land for nature. Today cities occupy just 2 percent of the earth's surface, but that will likely double to 4 percent over the next half century. In order to avoid this ostensibly terrible fate Rifkin proclaims, "In the next phase of human history, we will need to find a way to reintegrate ourselves into the rest of the living Earth if we are to preserve our own species and conserve the planet for our fellow creatures." Actually, he's got it completely backwards. Humanity must not reintegrate into nature-that way lays disaster for humanity and nature. Instead we must make ourselves even more autonomous than we already are from her.

    Since nothing is more destructive of nature than poverty stricken subsistence farmers, boosting agricultural productivity is the key to the human retreat from wild nature. As Jesse Ausubel, the director for the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University, points out: "If the world farmer reaches the average yield of today's US corn grower during the next 70 years, ten billion people eating as people now on average do will need only half of today's cropland. The land spared exceeds Amazonia." Similarly all of the world's industrial wood could be produced on an area that is less than 10 percent of the world's forested area today leaving 90 percent of the world's forests for Nature.

    Ausubel argues that the wealth produced by human creativity will spark the Great Restoration of the natural world in this century. As the amount of land and sea needed to supply human needs decreases, both cities and wild nature will expand with nature occupying, or reoccupying, the bulk of the land and sea freed up by human ingenuity. Nature will become an arena for human pleasure and instruction-much as Wordsworth desired--not a source of raw materials.

    Ultimately Rifkin is just using vague complaints about urbanization as a stalking horse for "runaway population growth." He thinks that there are just too many people whether they live in cities or not. In other words, Rifkin's just another Malthusian boob with a Gaia-worshiping fetish.

    You can read more about Thomas Malthus at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malthus


    From the Scout Report on December 22, 2006


    OpenOffice 2.1 --- http://www.openoffice.org/

    Some users will already be familiar with the OpenOffice applications, but for those who haven’t run across it yet will be equally pleased to learn that there is a new version of the program available. The application includes a number of features that will allow users to create text documents, presentations, diagrams, and databases. With an interface that is similar to a number of existing commercial products, OpenOffice 2.1 is easy to use and to understand. Finally, users of this program can save their documents in a variety of formats. This version is compatible with computers running Windows 98 and newer or Mac OS X and newer.

    Avant Browser 11 --- http://www.avantbrowser.com/index.html

    Web browsers may come and go, but the Avant Browser seems to have significant staying power. With this latest version, interested parties will find themselves presented with a number of new and compelling features.

    Along with a number of key new pop-up advertisement blockers, visitors can also take advantage of the browsers RSS reader. Additionally, the clean look of the browser’s graphical interface is noteworthy. This version is compatible with all computers running Windows 98 and newer.

    As year draws to a conclusion, the Statistical Abstract of the United States offers plenty of fodder for discussion around the holiday table Who Americans Are and What They Do, In Census Data --- Click Here

    Updates from WebMD --- http://www.webmd.com/



  • Latest Headlines on January 3, 2007

    Latest Headlines on January 4, 2007

    Latest Headlines on January 5, 2007

    Latest Headlines on January 6, 2007


    "YouTube airs medical help videos," PhysOrg, January 3, 2007 --- http://physorg.com/news87055969.html


    Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance
    --- http://www.dbsalliance.org



    "'The Encyclopedia of Everything Nasty' and Other Health Books Worth Owning," by Tara Parker Pope, The Wall Street Journal,  December 19, 2006; Page D1 --- http://online.wsj.com/article/health_journal.html


    "Mayo Clinic Book of Alternative Medicine":
    This book, to be published in January, has quickly become one of my favorites. If you're interested in taking a holistic approach to your health, combining the best of what conventional and alternative medicine have to offer, then this book is for you. It includes an alphabetical guide to various herbal supplements and how alternative remedies can safely be used to help treat 20 common conditions. It also includes an open-minded exploration of mind-body medicine, energy therapies and other so-called alternative approaches to health, as explained by some of the Mayo Clinic's top doctors. The book itself, with fewer than 200 pages, is slim and accessible. But it carries a big message, teaching readers to take an active role in their own health, and reminding us that the best medicine treats the mind and the spirit, as well as the body.


    "Prevention Magazine's Nutrition Advisor," by Mark Bricklin: Billed as "the ultimate guide to the health-boosting and health-harming factors in your diet," this book is easy to use and packed with needed information about the pros, cons and cautions about the foods we eat and drink. Organized by food type -- such as dairy, desserts, fast food and meats -- this book analyzes and rates 1,000 foods ranging from abalone to zwieback. While many nutrition books tell you exactly what to eat, this book gives you the nutritional lowdown on the foods you already are eating and gives you suggestions for more-healthful alternatives.

    "The Johns Hopkins Complete Home Guide to Symptoms & Remedies": Most health encyclopedias are organized by ailment, but that's helpful only if you already know what's wrong with you. This guide is organized more like how a patient thinks, with listings by symptom, such as bad breath, flatulence, ankle pain or eye redness. It isn't a substitute for a doctor's visit, but having a guide organized by symptom is a helpful first step for patients who aren't sure what to make of a new ache or pain. The second half of the book gives detailed information about various disorders. Some of the potential health problems linked with certain symptoms can be alarming (such as eye redness related to toxic shock syndrome), but I think seeing the full range of possible diagnoses is actually reassuring to patients, and helps them distinguish between routine health issues and more serious symptoms that require medical intervention.

    "Human Body: A Visual Guide," by Beverly McMillan: This book is filled with interesting photographs that make its exploration of the human body less daunting than most anatomy books. It's still a weighty read, much like a textbook, and would likely appeal only to someone with a keen interest in science, health and the human body. But I like having it on my bookshelf as a reference guide. Just the other day my daughter asked me how her eyes worked, and the pictures and explanations in this book helped me explain it to her.

    "Good Housekeeping Family First Aid," by Andy Jagoda, M.D.: The Internet gives us ready access to complex medical information, but what most of us really need is information about common family emergencies. This spiral-bound guide includes a section on how to be prepared for emergencies, including a detailed description of a well-stocked first-aid kit. In addition to an A-to-Z guide on how to deal with common health and safety issues, such as burns, tick bites and head injuries, this guide also has sections on important household safety issues, such as carbon monoxide and radon, accidental poisoning, fire-proofing your home and what to do when bad weather strikes.

    "Oh, Yuck! The Encyclopedia of Everything Nasty," by Joy Masoff: If the title doesn't grab you then the cover photo of a boy picking his nose will. Tapping into kids' fascination with body fluids and emissions, this guide to the gross offers insight into acne, body lint, eye gunk, scabs and vomit, among other things. Although it ventures outside the health arena to explore things like maggots and ticks, I think this book is a good starting point for talking to kids about health and taking care of their bodies.


    Hormones and Cancer: Assessing the Risks
    When researchers reported recently that a precipitous drop in breast cancer rates might be explained by a corresponding decrease in the use of hormones for menopause, women reacted with shock, anger and, in some cases, profound relief that they had never taken the drugs . . . A connection between hormone use and breast cancer rates did not surprise scientists like Dr. V. Craig Jordan, vice president and scientific director for the medical science division at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia. Dr. Jordan is a leader in studying the effects of estrogen-blocking drugs on breast cancer. Among his many awards is this year’s American Cancer Society Award from the American Society for Clinical Oncology for his work on estrogen and the prevention and treatment of breast cancer.
    Gina Kolata, "Hormones and Cancer: Assessing the Risks," The New York Times, December 26, 2006 ---


    Risk factors for hypertension start young

    By age 10, some black children already have high nighttime blood pressure, an early signal of impending cardiovascular disease, a new study shows. As they grow up, black children also show greater increases in nighttime blood pressure, according to a study that followed children's blood pressures over 15 years. Blacks experience less of a dip in nighttime blood pressure than whites. The gap between the pressure measurements of whites and blacks also widens as children get older. At night, blood pressure should drop because the body is resting, says Dr. Gregory Harshfield, director of MCG's Georgia Prevention Institute and a co-author on the study published in the Dec. 19 edition of Circulation, the journal of the American Heart Association.
    "Risk factors for hypertension start young," PhysOrg, December 22, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news86017426.html


    Medline Plus: Mammography
    --- http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/mammography.html



    Yale School of Medicine: Diagnostic Radiology --- http://radiology.yale.edu/education/resources.html#dept


    "Neurons targeted by dementing illness may have evolved for complex social cognition," PhysOrg, December 22, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news86001390.html

    Von Economo neurons (VENs) are uniquely shaped brain cells that seem to have evolved in a select group of socially complex species: great apes, humans, and, as reported last month, whales.

    Across species, VENs are localized to frontal brain regions associated with cognition, emotion and social behavior. Frontotemporal dementia (FTD), a common neurodegenerative condition, is characterized by early breakdown in social and emotional awareness and is accompanied by atrophy and dysfunction in the brain areas where VENs are located.

    A new study published in the December 2006 issue of Annals of Neurology, the official journal of the American Neurological Association, examined brain tissue acquired at autopsy and found that VENs were devastated in FTD.

    Led by William W. Seeley, M.D., of the Department of Neurology at the University of California, San Francisco, researchers quantified anterior cingulate cortex VENs in seven patients with FTD, five with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and seven control subjects who were not demented. All FTD patients had prominent changes in social behavior and emotion, sometimes accompanied by deficits in cognitive function.

    In contrast, AD patients had an array of cognitive symptoms, including memory and language impairment, with little change in social behavior. The researchers found early, severe, and selective loss of VENs in FTD, which showed a 69% reduction compared to AD and controls after controlling for overall neuronal loss. "Our findings suggest that selective VEN loss is a defining feature of FTD but does not apply to AD," the researchers state, adding that future research should explore how VEN loss relates to specific social/behavioral deficits in FTD and other disorders where such deficits are a defining feature.

    Continued in article



    Pets and Health Don't Mix for Adults 20 to 54
    Many studies have found that pets can help people cope with various physical and psychological problems . . . "Pet ownership was very lightly associated with poor health in the general working-aged population," Koivusilta and Ojanlatva conclude. Why? One reason is that pet owners -- even though they were more likely to enjoy outdoor activities such as hunting, boating, and fishing -- tended to weigh a little bit more for their height (a measure known as body mass index or BMI)
    Daniel DeNoon, "Pets and Health Don't Mix for Adults 20 to 54; They're More Overweight, Less Healthy," WebMD, December 28, 2006 --- http://www.webmd.com/content/article/131/117919


    Global warming could spell the end of the world's largest remaining tropical rain forest, transforming the Amazon into a grassy savanna before end of the century, researchers said Friday . . . Jose Antonio Marengo, a meteorologist with Brazil's National Space Research Institute, said that global warming, if left unchecked, will reduce rainfall and raise temperatures substantially in the ecologically rich region.
    "Researchers: Warming May Change Amazon," PhysOrg, December 31, 2006 --- http://physorg.com/news86677664.html



    "Why Iraq is a success," by Kevin McCollough, WorldNetDaily, December 22, 2006 --- http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=53472


    The leading cell phone company, Iraqna, is set to take in nearly $520 million in revenues in 2006. That follows a record year in 2005 of $333 million. The leading export of Iraq is producing nearly $41 billion in revenues. In 2004, there were only 8,000 registered companies with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce – today there are over 34,000.

    While we in the U.S. are thrilled to hear about GDP (gross domestic product) growth coming in at around 4 percent (so much so that it begins to bring down our national debt faster than expected), imagine enjoying Iraq's GDP growth of 13 percent in 2006 – which followed a record year in 2005 of 17 percent.

    Since 2003, the salaries of average Iraqis have risen in excess of 100 percent. In addition, the Iraqi government has slashed the income tax rates from 45 percent to just around 15 percent. That has resulted in the average Iraqi family being able to develop long-term nest eggs (we call them IRAs).

    Gasoline is only 56 cents a gallon. It wouldn't be that high except that Iraq decided to pay off some of its debt to the World Bank and is using energy profits to do so.

    In addition, much of the formerly centralized organization of the economy has been turned over to private sector endeavors, and while some government sectors have seen a spike in unemployment, private sector unemployment is hovering around 30 percent. (High to you and me, but still better than in the Saddam era.)

    There will be many who will read this latest round of good news and dismiss it out of hand. But thinking people will understand that this growth did not happen in a vacuum.

    Are there still significant challenges before the Iraqis? Yes, and there will be for decades – but the violence so reported in the daily news grind does not begin to give one even a slight glimpse of the entire picture.

    The militias need to be disbanded. Iran needs to keeps its nose out of the Shia population, and the Saudis out of the Sunnis. But while these debates are occurring, don't miss what's happening behind the scenes. Every single day 25 million Iraqis are going to jobs, coming home, paying bills, putting some into savings, educating their children – and living in freedom.

    Those who still disagree will argue that their freedom was not worth the cost in the numbers of lost American lives. And they do so dishonestly – knowing that we've lost fewer lives in the Global War on Terror than in any other armed conflict America has fought in (based on the numbers of American citizens and the percentage serving during war time).

    But some things are more valuable than life, and freedom is just such a treasure. Honorable people have always recognized this and in turn expressed tremendous gratitude for the sacrifice made. Dishonorable people have always preferred tyranny to freedom, and the most dishonorable believe in freedom only for themselves.

    The Global War on Terror has been and will continue to be a tough, long slog. In Iraq, the news has not been the best in recent months. Yet there is good news, and it deserves to be noted.

    Iraq will succeed. The terrorists will fail. And the longer the arm of freedom can reach, the more both statements will be proven true.

    And in an economic sense – we need no greater proof.



    "Essential books for understanding Christianity," by George Weigel, The Wall Street Journal,  December 23, 2006 --- http://www.opinionjournal.com/weekend/fivebest/?id=110009426


    1. "The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church" Edited by F.L. Cross and E.A. Livingstone (Oxford University, 1997).

    "The Christian Church has been so closely interwoven with the course of Western civilization that her history, life and institutions are matters of deep concern . . . to all who take an intelligent interest in contemporary culture." With that robust prefatory sentence, the late F.L. Cross anticipated the readership of this marvel of erudition, concision, fairness and accuracy--arguably the best one-volume reference work on Christianity ever produced. Cross's ecumenical sense of audience probably excludes the likes of Richard Dawkins and other members of the Guild of Village Atheists. But for anyone interested in how Christian doctrines, heresies, liturgical practices, artistic achievements and personalities (admirable and deplorable) shaped our world, this volume is indispensable.

    2. "Jesus Through the Centuries" by Jaroslav Pelikan (Yale University, 1985).

    Because Christianity is, above all, a personal encounter with Jesus Christ, the New Testament Gospels hold a uniquely privileged position in Christian literature. Yet some find the prospect of reading the Gospels intimidating. Happily, one can begin to understand the pivotal figure in human history in a different way, through Jaroslav Pelikan's lucid and learned explication of how the idea or image of Jesus Christ in any given historical moment shaped a period's culture. An example: Pelikan discusses how Christianity's theological wrestling with, and final acceptance of, representational art helped make possible accomplishments of the magnitude of Chartres' stained glass and Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel frescoes. It's something to consider when pondering what a triumph by jihadist Islam might mean for the greatest artifacts of Western civilization.

    3. "The Divine Comedy" by Dante Alighieri, translated by Dorothy L. Sayers (Penguin Classics, 1949, 1955, 1957).

    Dorothy L. Sayers was far more than the mystery writer who created Lord Peter Wimsey. Her Dante remains among the best, both for the elegance of the translations of the "Inferno," "Purgatorio" and "Paradiso" (this last completed by Barbara Reynolds after Miss Sayers's death in 1957) and for the subtle theological intelligence of her introductory commentaries and notes on this greatest of Christian poems, a complex allegory of the breadth of human experience and yearning. At a time when it is frequently suggested that nature--humanity included--is an accident of galactic biochemistry, Sayers's "Divine Comedy" offers a genuinely humanistic alternative: a glimpse (to cite the last phrase of Dante's masterwork) of "the love that moves the sun and the other stars."

    4. "The Challenge of Jesus" by N.T. Wright (InterVarsity, 1999).

    More than 200 years of "historical criticism" of the Bible have vastly increased our knowledge of biblical times and vastly decreased many Christians' confidence in their sacred text. Wright, now the Anglican bishop of Durham, takes the historical-critical method with utmost seriousness but, by challenging some of its assumptions, offers readers not the desiccated shadow-Christ of the notorious "Jesus Seminar" but a historically reliable portrait of the man, his teaching and his mission--a portrait that is, in its own way, an invitation to faith.

    5. The Sources of Christian Ethics by Servais Pinckaers, O.P. (Catholic University of America, 1995).

    Christianity--classic Christian morality in particular--is frequently pilloried as dour and nay-saying. Father Servais Pinckaers offers a different, more humane and more accurate perspective: the Christian moral life as a process of growing in "freedom for excellence," the freedom to choose the good as a matter of habit. By linking the best of Christian moral theology to the virtue-ethics of Aristotle, Pinckaers shows how human happiness is the goal of moral action. He thus provides a bridge across which Christians and non-Christians can discuss the full meaning of the good life.

    Mr. Weigel, a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, is the author, most recently, of "God's Choice: Pope Benedict XVI and the Future of the Catholic Church" (HarperCollins).


    Best Books on Outer Space
    "The Final Frontier Books on space that soar above the rest," by William Burrows, The Wall Street Journal, December 30, 2006 --- http://www.opinionjournal.com/weekend/fivebest/?id=110009458 

    1. "A Man on the Moon" by Andrew Chaikin (Time-Life Books, 1999).

    This meticulously researched, lavishly illustrated three-volume boxed set is a glorious upgrading of the version of the "A Man on the Moon" published in 1994 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing on July 20, 1969. Tom Hanks--unabashed space junkie and the executive producer of the 1998 HBO miniseries "From the Earth to the Moon" based on the book--wrote the introduction for this edition. "A Man on the Moon" captures the sweep of the successive Mercury, Gemini and Apollo programs. But what sets this history apart from others is that it completes the story by following the astronauts long after they accomplished their monumental feats. Frank Borman, for example, decided to work for Eastern Airlines and got caught in a cat's cradle of politics for which even life coping with NASA's bureaucracy had failed to prepare him.

    2. "Challenge to Apollo" by Asif A. Siddiqi (National Aeronautics and Space Administration, 2000).

    With the advent of glasnost in the 1980s, the Soviet space archives were opened to outsiders, revealing the full extent of Moscow's effort to compete with the U.S.--and providing NASA historian Asif Siddiqi with the material for this clearly written, exhaustively detailed historical narrative. As "Challenge to Apollo" makes clear, the Soviets' program was undermined by ferocious infighting between Sergei Korolev, the storied chief designer of the Soviet space effort, and his archrival, Valentin Glushko. But even if those two had reached their own glasnost, the Soviet effort was doomed to fall behind: The political and economic system under which Korolev and Glushko operated was grossly unequal to the task of beating its capitalist competitors to another world.

    3. "Lost Moon" by Jim Lovell and Jeffrey Kluger (Houghton Mifflin, 1994).

    "Lost Moon" is really two stories. One is familiar: that of the astronauts aboard Apollo 13, the only one of the seven moon-landing missions that did not make it to luna firma. An oxygen tank exploded, forcing the spacecraft to abort the landing, swing around the far side of the moon and limp home. It's a nail-biting saga as told by one of the astronauts who was there, Jim Lovell. But he and science writer Jeffrey Kluger also excel in describing the less well-known--but in some ways just as gripping--tale of the usually anonymous cadre of ground controllers, mission directors, engineers and others who worked to save Apollo 13--and without whom there would be no space missions.

    4. "Sky Walking" by Thomas D. Jones (Smithsonian/HarperCollins, 2006).

    Thomas D. Jones, or "TJ" to his friends and colleagues, has written a thoughtful and engrossing memoir about training to be an astronaut and then flying on four shuttle missions. He displays a joy in his experience that is deeply spiritual, but he is also pragmatic. "Never have I felt so insignificant, part of a scene so obviously set by God," Jones says of looking at the home planet while floating near the International Space Station 200 miles aloft. Yet he also describes in practical terms the wary camaraderie of working with former Cold War rivals from Russia, the challenge of spending 52 days in orbit and the frustration of having a space walk scrubbed for the most mundane of reasons: The handle on the hatch door stuck.

    5. "Bad Astronomy" by Philip Plait (Wiley, 2002).

    Philip Plait is a California astronomer who evidently became so exasperated with the contemporary warping of science by ideology or just plain ignorance that he wrote "Bad Astronomy" as an antidote. This primer on basic astronomy explains, among much else, why the moon sometimes hits your eye like a big pizza pie (it happens when the moon reaches the perigee of its elliptical orbit and is closest to us). But Plait's astronomical discussions also take on creationism. My favorite part of the book: when he goes after the crowd that claims the Apollo moon landings were a hoax. Years ago, Buzz Aldrin showed one way to deal with this bizarre belief when someone shoved a Bible at him and demanded that he swear he actually landed on the moon; Aldrin decked the guy. Plait achieves the equivalent with words.

    Mr. Burrows is the author of "This New Ocean: The Story of the First Space Age." His most recent book is "The Survival Imperative: Using Space to Protect Earth" (Tor/Forge, 2006).



    Crazy stunt wins a top Darwin Award (High on Life) --- http://darwinawards.com/darwin/darwin2006-05.html
    Two students who died after climbing into a huge helium-filled balloon for the 'buzz' of inhaling the gas have been named the winners of the 2006 Darwin Awards. Jason Ackerman and Sara Rydman, both 21, were discovered with their feet sticking out of a deflated balloon used to advertise property in LakeView, South Florida. The two apparently pulled the balloon out of the sky and squeezed themselves inside, where they died of oxygen starvation.
    "Crazy stunt wins Darwin Award" --- http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_2142072.html

    The 2006 Darwin Awards are listed at http://darwinawards.com/darwin/darwin2006.html

    Also see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darwin_Awards

    History Exam forwarded by Auntie Bev

    1. In the 1940's, where were automobile headlight dimmer switches located? a. On the floor shift knob b. On the floor board, to the left of the clutch c. Next to the horn

    2. The bottle top of a Royal Crown Cola bottle had holes in it. For what was it used? a. Capture lightning bugs b. To sprinkle clothes before ironing c. Large salt shaker

    3. Why was having milk delivered a problem in northern winters? a. Cows got cold and wouldn't produce milk b. Ice on highways forced delivery by dog sled c. Milkmen left deliveries outside of front doors and milk would freeze, expanding and pushing up the cardboard bottle top.

    4. What was the popular chewing gum named for a game of chance? a. Blackjack b. Gin c. Craps!

    5. What method did women use to look as if they were wearing stockings when none were available due to rationing during W.W.II a. Suntan b. Leg painting c. Wearing slacks

    6. What postwar car turned automotive design on its ear when you couldn't tell whether it was coming or going? a. Studebaker b. Nash Metro c. Tucker

    7. Which was a popular candy when you were a kid? a. Strips of dried peanut butter b. Chocolate licorice bars c. Wax coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water inside

    8. How was Butch wax used? a. To stiffen a flat-top haircut so it stood up b. To make floors shiny and prevent scuffing c. On the wheels of roller skates to prevent rust

    9. Before in-line skates, how did you keep your roller skates attached to your shoes? a With clamps, tightened by a skate key b. Woven straps that crossed the foot c. Long pieces of twine

    10. As a kid, what was considered the best way to reach a decision? a. Consider all the facts b. Ask Mom c. Eeny-meeny-miney-mo

    11. What was the most dreaded disease in the 1940's-50's?

    a. Smallpox b. AIDS c. Polio

    12. "I'll be down to get you in a ________, Honey" a. SUV b. Taxi c. Streetcar

    13. What was the name of Caroline Kennedy's pet pony? a. Old Blue b. Paint c. Macaroni

    14. What was a Duck-and-Cover Drill? a. Part of the game of hide and seek b What you did when your Mom called you in to do chores c. Hiding under your desk, and covering your head with your arms in an A-bomb drill.

    15. What was the name of the Indian Princess on the Howdy Doody show? a. Princess Summerfallwinterspring b. Princess Sacajawea c. Princess Moonshadow

    16. What did all the really savvy students do when mimeographed tests were handed out in school? a. Immediately sniffed the purple ink, as this was believed to get you high b. Made paper airplanes to see who could sail theirs out the window c. Wrote another pupil's name on the top, to avoid their failure

    17. Why did your Mom shop in stores that gave Green Stamps with purchases? a. To keep you out of mischief by licking the backs, which tasted like bubble gum b. They could be put in special books and redeemed for various household items c. They were given to the kids to be used as stick-on tattoos

    18. Praise the Lord, and pass the _________? a. Meatballs b. Dames c. Ammunition

    19. What was the name of the singing group that made the song "Cabdriver" a hit? a. The Ink Spots b. The Supremes c. The Esquires

    20. Who left his heart in San Francisco ? a. Tony Bennett b. Xavier Cugat c. George Gershwin -------------------------------------------------------------------------


    1. b) On the floor, to the left of the clutch. Hand controls, popular in Europe , took till the late '60's to catch on.

    2. b) To sprinkle clothes before ironing. Who had a steam iron?

    3. c) Cold weather caused the milk to freeze and expand, popping the bottle top.

    4. a) Blackjack Gum.

    5. b) Special makeup was applied, followed by drawing a seam down the back of the leg with eyebrow pencil.

    6. a) 1946 Studebaker.

    7. c) Wax coke bottles containing super-sweet colored water.

    8 a) Wax for your flat top (butch) haircut.

    9. a) With clamps, tightened by a skate key, which you wore on a shoestring around your neck.

    10. c) Eeny-meeny-miney-mo.

    11. c) Polio. In beginning of August, swimming pools were closed, movies and other public gather- ing places were closed to try to prevent spread of the disease.

    12. b) Taxi. Better be ready by half-past eight!

    13. c) Macaroni.

    14. c) Hiding under your desk, and covering your head with your arms in an A-bomb drill.

    15. a) Princess Summerfallwinterspring. She was another puppet.

    16. a) Immediately sniffed the purple ink to get a high.

    17. b) Put in a special stamp book, they could be traded for household items at the Green Stamp store.

    18. c) Ammunition, and we'll all be free.

    19. a) The widely famous 50's group: The Inkspots.

    20. a) Tony Bennett, and he sounds just as good today..


    17 - 20 correct: You are older than dirt, and obviously gifted with mental abilities. Now if you could only find your glasses. Definitely someone who should share your wisdom!

    12 -16 correct: Not quite dirt yet, but you're getting there.

    0 -11 correct: You are not old enough to share the wisdom of your experiences.



    More Tidbits from the Chronicle of Higher Education --- http://www.aldaily.com/

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

    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/.

    Three Finance Blogs

    Jim Mahar's FinanceProfessor Blog --- http://financeprofessorblog.blogspot.com/
    FinancialRounds Blog --- http://financialrounds.blogspot.com/
    Karen Alpert's FinancialMusings (Australia) --- http://financemusings.blogspot.com/

    Some Accounting Blogs

    Paul Pacter's IAS Plus (International Accounting) --- http://www.iasplus.com/index.htm
    International Association of Accountants News --- http://www.aia.org.uk/
    AccountingEducation.com and Double Entries --- http://www.accountingeducation.com/
    Gerald Trite's eBusiness and XBRL Blogs --- http://www.zorba.ca/
    AccountingWeb --- http://www.accountingweb.com/   
    SmartPros --- http://www.smartpros.com/

    Bob Jensen's Sort-of Blogs --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/JensenBlogs.htm
    Current and past editions of my newsletter called New Bookmarks --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/bookurl.htm
    Current and past editions of my newsletter called Tidbits --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/TidbitsDirectory.htm
    Current and past editions of my newsletter called Fraud Updates --- http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen/FraudUpdates.htm

    Richard Torian's Managerial Accounting Information Center --- http://www.informationforaccountants.com/ 

    Professor Robert E. Jensen (Bob) http://www.trinity.edu/rjensen
    190 Sunset Hill Road
    Sugar Hill, NH 03586
    Phone:  603-823-8482 
    Email:  rjensen@trinity.edu