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Gastric bypass surgery performed by remote control

November 9, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 2:42 am

Sunday, August 21, 2005

A robotic system at Stanford Medical Center was used to perform a laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery successfully with a theoretically similar rate of complications to that seen in standard operations. However, as there were only 10 people in the experimental group (and another 10 in the control group), this is not a statistically significant sample.

If this surgical procedure is as successful in large-scale studies, it may lead the way for the use of robotic surgery in even more delicate procedures, such as heart surgery. Note that this is not a fully automated system, as a human doctor controls the operation via remote control. Laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery is a treatment for obesity.

There were concerns that doctors, in the future, might only be trained in the remote control procedure. Ronald G. Latimer, M.D., of Santa Barbara, CA, warned “The fact that surgeons may have to open the patient or might actually need to revert to standard laparoscopic techniques demands that this basic training be a requirement before a robot is purchased. Robots do malfunction, so a backup system is imperative. We should not be seduced to buy this instrument to train surgeons if they are not able to do the primary operations themselves.”

There are precedents for just such a problem occurring. A previous “new technology”, the electrocardiogram (ECG), has lead to a lack of basic education on the older technology, the stethoscope. As a result, many heart conditions now go undiagnosed, especially in children and others who rarely undergo an ECG procedure.

Ayatollah Rafsanjani commemorates Iran-Iraq battle victory

October 31, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 2:03 am

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani commemorated the “the glories of the Islamic Revolution, the Sacred Defense in particular” during Friday prayers. He used the occasion “especially at a point when Iran’s defensive powers might be underestimated.” On 24 of May 1982, Iran drove Iraq out of Khorramshahr near its border with Iraq.

Ayatollah Rafsanjani has been the chairman of the Expediency Council which resolves government disputes arising out of legislations and advises Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Rafsanjani chided the Western countries for equipping Iraq during the war and said the Iraqi army used “hideous chemical weapons of the most destructive kind and that they targeted Iranian cities, ships and planes, taking advantage of the West’s intelligence and ammunition.”

Next, Rafsanjani indicated that Iran was open to compromise and negotiation on the impasse of Iran’s nuclear activities. Nevertheless, he stated the Iran would not brook pre-conditions. He stated, “They set a precondition for negotiations, which is humiliating to us.” He, moreover, said,

If the West is honest in its claim, doors for negotiation in the field of nuclear issue will be open.

Rafsanjani has also accused the West of wanting to bring about discord among Shi’ite and Sunni Muslims. A few days ago, he called King Abdallah bin Abdul-Aziz of Saudi Arabia to exchange view regarding this issue. King Abdullah responded that Iran has strengthened bond among Islamic nations and praised the Islamic Republic. On a similar note, in a meeting with the parliament speaker of Morocco, Rafsanjani said, “Resolving problems requires convergence and assistance from other Islamic countries.”

Cyprus and Malta adopt the euro

October 30, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 2:54 am

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Today at midnight, the Republic of Cyprus and the Republic of Malta, both small island states in the Mediterranean and former British colonies, adopted the euro as their official currency; less than four years after their accession to the European Union. Because Cyprus and Malta are in different time zones, Cyprus adopted the euro one hour before Malta did the same. In both countries the euro was welcomed with outdoor celebrations, including a fireworks display in Malta’s capital Valletta. According to the BBC Cypriot Finance Minister Michalis Sarris has said the euro “will benefit consumers and businesses alike because of the eurozone’s low inflation, low interest rates and large market.”

The BBC reports that Cypriot and Maltese leaders “made symbolic withdrawals of euros from cash machines just minutes into the New Year.” TIME reports that Maltese Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi had to wait a little while before getting his hands on the new currency because “an automated teller machine did not work when Gonzi tried to withdraw euros, and he was obliged to use a different ATM.”

The Cypriot pound (CYP) and the Maltese lira (MTL) will remain in use during a dual circulation period that will last until the end of this month, at which point they will cease to be legal tender. However, it will still be possible to exchange them for Euro free of charge after the end of this period. Commercial banks in Cyprus will exchange Cypriot pounds for Euro until 30 June, but only for amounts up to CYP 1000 per customer and per transaction in banknotes and up to CYP 5O in coins. The Central Bank of Cyprus will exchange coins until the end of 2009 and banknotes until the end of 2017. Maltese commercial banks will exchange Maltese lira for Euro until the end of March, with a limit for non-customers of MTL 250, whereas the Central Bank of Malta will exchange coins until 1 February 2010 and banknotes until 1 February 2018.

We’re sorry to say goodbye to our pound but happy to welcome the euro.

The single currency has replaced the Cypriot pound and the Maltese lira at a rate of one euro to 0.585274 Cypriot pound and 0.4293 to the Maltese lira, or 1.71 euro per Cypriot pound and 2.33 per Maltese lira. This conversion rate had been fixed on 10 July 2007 by Ecofin, the council comprising the finance ministers of the EU Member States.

Today with the adoption of the Euro, Cyprus and Malta have become even more integrated in the heart of the European Union, less than four years after they joined the EU.

Cyprus and Malta are the 14th and the 15th country to join the Eurozone, which already includes Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Portugal, Spain, Greece and Slovenia. All EU Member States are required to join the Eurozone once certain conditions are fulfilled, except Denmark and the United Kingdom which have negotiated a so-called opt-out that allows them not to adopt the single currency.

The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, the de facto independent Turkish-controlled area in the north of Cyprus, will not join the Eurozone. Northern Cyprus is not part of the European Union and is recognised only by Turkey. As a result, the Turkish lira will remain the official currency in the north of the island; however, TIME reports that “many Turkish Cypriot merchants will also accept euros along with Turkish lira.” Cypriot Euro coins are inscribed in both Greek and Turkish.

The euro will also be legal tender in the Sovereign Base Areas, British military bases in Cyprus.

The national sides of the Cypriot Euro coins feature three separate designs for the three series of coins. The 1, 2 and 5-cent coins feature the mouflon, or wild sheep, the 10, 20 and 50-cent coins feature the Kyrenia ship, the wreck of a 4th century BC Greek merchant ship discovered in 1967 and salvaged closed to Kyrenia, and the €1 and €2 coins feature the Idol of Pomos, a prehistoric sculpture from the village of Pomos, three national symbols of Cyprus. The designs were jointly created by Tatiana Soteropoulos and Erik Maell.

The Maltese euro coins’ national sides will also feature national motifs. The 1, 2 and 5-cent coins will feature the altar of the Mnajdra temple grouping, a complex of three Neolithic temples on the southern coast of Malta and one of the oldest free-standing temple groupings in the world, the 10, 20 and 50-cent coins will feature the Coat of Arms of Malta, and the €1 and €2 coins will bear the Maltese cross, a symbol associated with an order of Christian warriors known as the Knights Hospitaller or Knights of Malta, which was based on Malta for more than 250 years after they had been given the islands by Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor. The designs of Maltese engraver Noel Galea Bason were selected after two rounds of public consultations in which people were invited to vote via SMS.

Both Cyprus and Malta have taken a number of steps to address fears of undue price rises. 7,130 Cypriot companies have subscribed to a Fair Pricing Code launched by the authorities and the Cypriot government urged companies to round their prices down. In Malta, the FAIR initiative, a fair pricing scheme, was put in place in January 2007. This scheme, which provides for administrative fines for those failing to respect their commitment, now involves 80% of all retail outlets. Malta, according to the BBC, has also signed 12 price stabilisation agreements with importers, which will last until March 2008.

In both countries, the authorities will monitor retailers to ensure they do not exploit the changeover for unfair gain by rounding up their prices, contributing to inflation.

Sony refreshes VAIO brand for business and entertainment

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in Uncategorized @ 2:52 am

Thursday, July 31, 2008

From the middle of July, Sony Corporation refreshed their senior laptop brand VAIO from “Video Audio Integrated Operation” to “Visual Audio Intelligent Organizer”. According to Sony Taiwan Limited, this refreshment is an attempt to relocate the laptop consuming market for business and entertainment factors.

In the “VAIO Experience 2008” press conference in Europe, Sony promoted their new product series for different populations including BZ for business, FW for home entertainment, Z for ultra-slim, and SR for complex applications.

Different with past series, Sony added “Clear Bright” screening technology for high-definition display, and “full-carbon production” features. BD-burning and Intel Centrino 2 processing technologies will be featured in all the new models. For security issue, Sony also embedded fingerprint system to prevent personal data to be stolen. Continued from TZ series, innovative designs including “Green Power Button”, “Situational Switch” are also added in newly-launched series.

“Due to consuming market differences, Sony only promoted BZ series in Europe and America but not included Asia. Although the TICA Show in Taipei will be different, functionality will be the greatest issue when a consumers choose a notebook [computer] before buying.” addressed by executives from Sony Taiwan Limited, during the “VAIO Experience 2008” press conference in Taiwan.

Category:May 16, 2010

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in Uncategorized @ 2:41 am
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News briefs:July 14, 2010

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in Uncategorized @ 2:28 am
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All About Paragliding And Parasailing}

October 18, 2019 0

in Surveyors @ 2:22 am

All About Paragliding And Parasailing

by

Joy Smit

Many people don’t know the difference between paragliding and parasailing. In fact, many claim that powered paragliding and parasailing are one and the same. This misconception is probably due to the fact that riders are both propelled into the air.

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ParasailingIn parasailing, you need a motorized vehicle and a canopy to make you airborne. You can’t go parasailing alone, you will need an experienced and well-trained team to drive your vehicle and inflate your canopy. It is a common misconception that parasailing can only be done on water. Parasailing can be both done on the sea and on land.The common method of parasailing is aquatic parasailing, which is done in bodies of water. This method has three types: winchboat, platform and beach. The simplest form of parasailing is the beach type, while the most complicated is winchboat, where a special type of boat called a winchboat is needed to aid your landing and liftoff. Platform parasailing, where you will ascend and descend on a platform, has waned in popularity because of some safety issues.Terrestrial parasailing is usually done in deserts or probably in large areas of barren land. It is not safe to parasail on areas that are covered in trees and shrubs because you might get snagged on the branches of a tree during landing or liftoff. Jeeps are the usual vehicles of choice for this parasailing method because they are sturdier.Powered ParaglidingPPG, short for Powered Paragliding, is actually very different from parasailing. In PPG, you don’t need a plane to drop you in the air or a boat or vehicle to hoist you up. An inflatable wing and a portable-backpack motor are just what you need to start powered paragliding. The motor will be the one to propel you into the air, while your inflatable wing will keep you airborne.Major differences of parasailing and powered paraglidingThe most blatant difference is that you can go solo in PPG, while parasailing is a team effort. The manner by which a person is lifted off also differs. You are propelled by a motorized backpack unit in PPG, while in parasailing, you are at the mercy of wind velocity, towrope length and vehicle speed.You only need to listen to a few minutes of water safety lessons before you can go parasailing. The people who must undergo special safety training are the ones that will handle the equipment. However, in PPG, you need to attend at least five days of training to be able to enjoy a worry-free solo flight.

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Jawbone found in Aruba is not Natalee Holloway’s

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in Uncategorized @ 2:13 am

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A jawbone found in Aruba is not that of missing American Natalee Holloway, who was a recent high school-graduate at the time of her disappearance. Officials confirmed the news after Dutch scientists completed tests on the bone. The jawbone, which also had a wisdom tooth with it, was found by an American tourist close to the Phoenix Hotel. A second bone had also been found by another tourist earlier this month.

The bone was sent to the Netherlands Forensic Institute where scientists completed tests. They compared the bone to dental records given to them by Natalee’s father, from which they confirmed the the bone was not that of Natalee, although it was human. It was said to be unlikely that the bone was Holloway’s as there is no physical evidence that she was murdered.

Beth accepts the forensic conclusions, is emotionally exhausted from the inexplicably long wait, and deeply disappointed in the time and manner in which she learned of the results.

Taco Stein, the Aruban Solicitor General, released a statement after the announcement was made. He commented on the speed of the identification; he said that they had quickly ruled out Holloway because her records had shown that she had her wisdom teeth previously removed.

Tim Miller, the Director of the Texas EquuSearch, released a statement after talking to Natalee’s father. He said “Dave [Natalee’s father] has been in contact with Aruban authorities and spoke with FBI this morning, the agent working the case. Dave believes it is Natalee.”

An attorney for Natalee’s mother, Beth Twitty, released a statement saying “Beth accepts the forensic conclusions, is emotionally exhausted from the inexplicably long wait, and deeply disappointed in the time and manner in which she learned of the results.” He commented on the Aruban authorities saying that “Apparently Aruban prosecutors were more sensitive to media concerns than the painful vigil of a mother.”

Natalee Holloway disappeared on the island in 2005 while on a school trip. She was last seen leaving a nightclub with three men, one of which was later identified as Joran van der Sloot. Van der Sloot was detained twice by police but has never been charged with Holloway’s disappearance. He is currently in Peru facing a different murder charge. Aruban authorities have said that they are checking neighboring islands to find a match for other missing persons.

DiCaprio finally wins Oscar for Best Actor

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in Uncategorized @ 2:02 am

Monday, February 29, 2016

Yesterday Leonardo DiCaprio won his first Oscar, for Best Actor, at the 88th Academy Awards. The award ended DiCaprio’s long wait for an Academy Award — he was first nominated in 1993 and won on his sixth nomination, for his role in The Revenant, which also won Best Cinematography and Best Director.

I thank you all for this amazing award tonight. Let us not take this planet for granted. I do not take tonight for granted. Thank you so very much.

In his acceptance speech, DiCaprio described The Revenant as “about man’s relationship to the natural world”, and spoke of underprivileged people affected adversely by human activities on nature. He also said “Our production needed to move to the southern tip of this planet just to be able to find snow”. He concluded saying “I thank you all for this amazing award tonight. Let us not take this planet for granted. I do not take tonight for granted. Thank you so very much.”

DiCaprio was previously nominated for his work in The Wolf of Wall Street, for Best Actor and Best Picture; Blood Diamond, for Best Actor; The Aviator, Best Actor; and What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, for Best Supporting Actor.

Kate Winslet, who co-starred with DiCaprio in Titanic, was nominated for Best Supporting Actress for Steve Jobs, but lost to Swedish actress Alicia Vikander for her role in The Danish Girl. Brie Larson collected Best Actress for her performance in Room.

Mad Max: Fury Road had ten nominations and won six of them: Best Costume Design, Film Editing, Makeup and Hairstyling, Production Design, Sound Editing, and Sound Mixing. Ex Machina won the award for Best Visual Effects. Spotlight won the Best Picture award, and Sam Smith’s song Writing’s on the Wall won Best Original Song for Spectre ahead of the Grammy-winning song Earned It by Canadian singer The Weeknd.

Media round-up: April Fools’ Day 2008

October 13, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 2:01 am

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Many media outlets traditionally deliberately spread hoaxes on April Fools’ Day, including notable quality sources such as National Geographic and Science.

The popular British tabloid The Sun wrote that French President Nicolas Sarkozy is to undergo stretch surgery to make him taller than his wife, Italian artist and model Carla Bruni. The report claimed the 5 foot 5 inch leader would be made 5 inches taller in one year using a method by Israeli professor Ura Schmuck. The Sun noted that during his visit to Britain last week, Sarkozy had high-heel shoes while his wife wore a pair of flat pumps.

The Guardian on the other hand ran an article that suggested that Carla would head an initiative by Prime Minister Gordon Brown to bring more glamour, good taste and sophistication to the U.K. general population. This would involve collaboration with Marks & Spencer for high-street fashion and Jamie Oliver for meals and wine.

BBC News had real-looking footage of flying penguins fronted by documentary host Terry Jones, which were actually an advertisement for its new iPlayer.

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