Friday, December 19, 2008

Foot Found in Newborn Baby's Head

Three day old Sam Esquibel was operated on after a small tumor had been located in his brain. Little did they know, when they went in for surgery the surgeons would find a fully grown foot, another partial foot, a hand, and a thigh. The cause of this is believed to be "foetus in foetu", which is when a twin starts to form inside of the other twin.

Sam is now at home with his parents where he has mostly recovered from the operation that took place back in October. He still has to do monthly blood tests and undergoe therapy on his neck. This unique situation still has doctor's stumped.


xPirate's thoughts: Wow, I find this absolutely fascinating! Apart from when I wanted to compare this child's brain to a bucket of KFC, I'm just so shocked that this kid's brain was actually growing body parts! The twins thing sounds like a reasonable conclusion, but that's so weird that it would happen in the brain. Since the child has mostly recovered, I am left wondering if he suffered any brain damage from either the condition or the operation.

Makes me wonder if I have any spare parts floating around my body. Doubt it.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Webcomic Wednesday: Dubya Bush vs. Evil Shoe

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

New Serious Security Flaw found in Internet Explorer

A new security flaw in Internet Explorer is believed to allow malicious computer users to take control of their victim's computer. Passwords may be stolen as well as other important private information stored on the computer. A security adviser stated, "Microsoft is continuing its investigation of public reports of attacks against a new vulnerability in Internet Explorer."

The vulnerability is said to have existed in all previous versions of Internet Explorer. Other competing browsers such as Firefox, Opera, Chrome, and Safari are not vulnerable to this attack. Microsoft is not encouraging that people switch browsers "due to this one flaw," that has already compromised as many as 10,000 websites.


xPirate's Thoughts: BAH! If you are using Internet Explorer, SWITCH NOW! I highly recommend Firefox, or if you want a prettier browsing experience try Chrome. This isn't the first major security flaw found in IE, and I'm willing to bet big money it won't be the last! Be a smart cookie and switch now!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Bush Dodges Shoes from Angery Reporter

President Bush faced some animosity today as he ducked out of the way of two flying shoes from Iraqi reporter Muntadar al-Zeidi. He was reported as saying, "...this is a goodbye kiss from the Iraqi people, dog," as he threw the first shoe and "...this is for the widows and orphans and all those killed in Iraq," as he threw the second shoe. Bush was able to dodge both shoes and allowed for some humor after the situation.

Unrelated, Bush was able to sign a pact in which all U.S. troops will be removed by the end of 2011. This will move will start in June of 2009 when troops will be withdrawn from all Iraqi cities.


xPirate's Thoughts: First of all, I'm pretty sure I laughed out loud when I read this. I think many of us here in the U.S. would love for the opportunity to throw our shoes at Bush. (Hey, what a great idea for an annoying flash advertisement game!) Was it worth the arrest and criminal charges he will probably face? I'd say it was. Even if he didn't hit the idiot, it was still a great gesture!

On another note, there's FIANLLY a date set for the withdrawl of troops from Iraq!! Yay! This is exciting news. I wish I had more time to write about it! Until next time...

Monday, December 1, 2008

Interview: Jess Ryan from OneInTwenty and Amy Burch from Amnesty International

Introduction: This afternoon I had the pleasure of sitting down with two people leading the fight against AIDS here in the local community of Loveland, Colorado. The first girl, Jessica Ryan, is the founder and director of the OneinTwenty campaign that I wrote about here. The second girl, Amy Burch, is a teacher at Loveland High School and leader of the Amnesty International programme at the school.

About OneinTwenty:

Q: What prompted you to start the OneinTwenty campaign?
Jess - My friend Rachel and I had planned to get a bunch of facts and statistics together to inform people about AIDS during World AIDS Day in 2006. The night before I found a statistic that stated one in every twenty people in Africa are infected with HIV and AIDS. I decided to make a visual representation of that statistic in a necklace (the 19 black beads and single red bead). Throughout the day people asked if I could make them one too, and I agreed. One person offered to pay me money, which is when I decided to start selling them and give the money to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Malaria, and tuberculosis.
Q: What goals did you have in mind when you first started?
Jess - The main goal is to just raise money and awareness. There's no set goal as to how much money I want to raise or how many people I want to reach. Every bit helps.
Q: What accomplishments have you made that you weren't expecting?
Jess - Thanks to ThinkHumanity, it is now being used as a tool in Uganda to help refugees be aware of the situation. It acts as a reminder for them to stay safe.
Q: How many necklaces have you sold and how much money have you raised?
Jess - So far we've raised about $400. We've sold about 500-600 neclaces. The price is lower because when I first started I was selling them at $0.50 each.
On the Global Fund and Amnesty International:

Q: What is Amnesty International at Loveland High School doing to play their part in World AIDS Day?
Burch - We met on Friday and made T-Shirts. We started looking up facts in order to help bring awareness to this global issue. People can't forget about this. Just because it's not directly effecting us doesn't mean we shouldn't care. It has a ripple effect that can and will eventually effect us. I think people want to be active. People want to feel like they can do something.
Q: What does the money in the Global Fund go towards?
Jess - It pays for workers, it pays for medication, and it pays for education.

Burch - It goes toward funding medication. It goes to the poor people in Africa who can't afford these expensive treatments and medications. It is expensive for them to get help.
Q: In response to my recent article on the harmful effects of offering aid to Africa (link), how can we be assured that this money isn't going to the corrupt politicians and these medications that are supposed to be free won't be sold on the black market? How can we know we are helping instead of harming?
Jess - I don't know about any of that. But ThinkHumanity has a lot of sustainability projects going on in Africa. They teach citizens how to farm and take care of livestock so that they can support themselves and sell their food for profit to help jumpstart the economy. Educate! has schools in Uganda where they teach the young students the principles of good leadership so that they can one day lead their country instead of the corrupt officials. These organizations are being innovative and offering help and education so that Africa can solve it's own problems.

Burch - It's a reputable organization. On their website they give statistics as to what they've done so far. You can see progress and you can see results. I do agree though that you have to be aware that you are giving to a reputable cause that will serve the people in a non-harmful way.
Q: Do you believe Starbuck's efforts of donating $0.05 per drink is enough considering their size and daily profits?
Jess - No. I think it's a good gesture but I think it's more of a ploy to get more people to buy their coffee. Instead, I think it would be better for people to donate directly to the Global Fund or another reputable AIDS fund.

Burch - That's pathetic. It's an insult. It makes me want to boycott them. They make millions of dollars a day. $0.05 is just pathetic.