~e; Electromagnetic News & Views #53

From human being <human@electronetwork.org>
Date Fri, 10 Oct 2003 20:09:23 -0500

Electromagnetic News & Views -- #53

00) Electronetwork.org Commentary (10/10/2003)

01) Top Stories of Electromagnetism
02) Electromagnetic health & safety
03) Electromagnetic trash & treasure
04) Electromagnetic security & surveillance
05) Electromagnetic power & energy
06) Electromagnetic current & human affairs
07) Electromagnetic transport & communication
08) Electromagnetic matter & information
09) Electromagnetic trends & inventions
10) Electromagnetic weaponry & warfare
11) Electromagnetic business & economics
12) Electromagnetic artworks & artifacts

00) --commentary--  Neil Postman.

Once read a great book and found a great teacher who
asked great questions and they were trying to share
why this great book was virtually unknown. They said
it was likely because it was published during a time
of crisis, and thus never received the attention it
deserved, or something to this effect. Likewise, it
is with the passing of Johnny Cash that the special
contributions of unique person's works may be lost
to the rapid presentation of endless history making.
Thus, a minor TV personality who dies gets a long-
media send-off while a poet of the ages is silenced.
So too, at a time where basic media literacy is so
critical to being critical in awareness, in thinking,
in perceiving, it is such work that is strangely in
absence from the leading discourses of the day, and
detached from the fundamental questions related to
media, this from a teacher who wrote a book both on
linguistics and peaceful revolution through education,
who wrote of language, media, education and change.
Yet, not a blip on the screen of today's consciousness
even though the greatest teachings never seem to end...

// Rest in peace Neil Postman... (click-thru 'day pass')

Neil Postman: A civilized man in a century of barbarism
A former student remembers a teacher who never stopped raking
the worlds of Big Media and technology with his savage wit.

	'He was expert in nothing. Therefore nothing was off limits.' ...  
'Postman, world-famous media scholar, was famous among students and  
friends for refusing any technology thought to "improve" something in  
which he had never requested improvements. A simple rule, with  
hilarious consequences.' ... '...[Postman] knew the two secrets of all  
great teachers, things no teachers college can teach: First, you don't  
put knowledge into people, you draw it out. (Which is why personality  
was his one and only classroom "method.") Second, if you can manage to  
conceal, artfully, some crucial part of what you are saying, then young  
people who are listening really, really hard will make it their  
business to find you out...'

[and]  Neil Postman, 72, Mass Media Critic, Dies

	'Dr. Postman's core message was that an immersion in a media  
environment shaped children's lives to their detriment, and society's.'  
... 'If all the secrets of adulthood, including sex, illness and death,  
are opened to children, he wrote, cynicism, apathy or arrogance replace  
curiosity for them, short-circuiting education and moral development.'  
... 'In 1971, he founded the program in media ecology at the Steinhardt  
School of Education of N.Y.U.'

01) --top stories--

German Sources Say Russia Might Price Its Oil in Euros // drudge

	'A switch into euros by Russia, the second-biggest oil exporter behind  
Saudi Arabia and holder of the world's largest natural gas reserves,  
would represent a major shift in the balance of currencies behind the  
world's most traded commodity.'

[and] Putin, Schroeder call for cooperation

	'At present, oil and natural gas are supplied to the Russian domestic  
market at a fraction of their export prices. Foreign producers,  
especially in the European Union, claim that this amounts to a subsidy  
to Russian manufacturers and want the same price for all sales.' ..  
'Putin said Russia was ready to gradually raise its energy prices and  
discuss the process with EU officials, but added that such  
consultations must be separate from WTO accession talks.'


	'The Bush Administration is asking the Supreme Court to
intervene in the continuing dispute over whether the Vice
President must disclose records of his meetings with
non-governmental advisors in the course of the 2001 Energy
Task Force.'

Energy Bill Could Be Stalled Until '04, Senate Aide Says

	'A spokeswoman for the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee  
told reporters that divisions between House and Senate Republicans over  
rules for the electricity industry, gasoline additives and subsidies  
for a gas pipeline in Alaska might not be resolved before Congress  
adjourned for the year.' ... 'That idea stunned lobbyists, who had  
expected the measure with dozens of provisions favorable to American  
power producers to be wrapped up in a few weeks. It also angered House  
officials, who said lawmakers there were ready to proceed.' .. 'It  
arose as Mr. Bush repeated in a speech in New Hampshire his call for  
the negotiators to finish the bill quickly.' .. '"They must come  
together and get a bill to my desk before they go home for Christmas,"  
he said.' ... 'Conservation groups and other critics ... say the  
overall measure is little more than a collection of special provisions  
for the oil, gas and electricity industries.'

NYGPS - using GPS for math, science & social studies education

	'If so, this is an invitation to join the NYGPS mail group, an online  
community of educators and GPS users who are sharing information and  
materials about using GPS use in school.'

STARTING OUT IN BASIC ELECTRONICS // good (minus the hard sell)

He Thinks, Therefore He Sells // conceptual sculptor of neurons

	'Keats registered his brain as a sculpture, the structure of which  
Keats claims to have created thought by thought.' ... 'Keats said his  
plan is not a joke and that the idea of having a holding company look  
after his brain after he is dead comforts him.' .. 'However, he is not  
sure yet who will actually sit on the company's board.'

02-- electromagnetic health & safety

// after taking apart a radio scanner to see if the loose
// connector could be fixed, it was realized that there
// were two double-sided, sandwiched printed circuit boards
// chock full of electronics inside this device that looks
// so simple from the outside, just a small display, buttons.
// this to say: the complexity for a radio scanner to do what
// it does, and in comparison, a cellphone, does not surprise
// if there are weird and dangerous events even with quality-
// control. plus reading of 'capacitors' being able to hold a
// surprising amount of energy, and a dangerous discharge, to
// relating this to reports of electrolytic capacitor issues...

Cell Phone Explodes- Manufacturer is investigating // drudge

Is The Pentagon Giving Our Soldiers Cancer? // DU. cursor.org
by Hillary Johnson Rolling Stone ; October 2, 2003
U.S. military might relies on depleted uranium, which incinerates tanks  
on impact.  But soldiers and civilians alike say the radioactive ammo  
is making them sick.

	'Chris Busby, a British specialist in low-level radiation, conducted  
his own field assessments in Iraq before the second Gulf War and  
measured radiation more than 100 times normal near target sites. He  
concluded that oxide particles are blown far afield by the wind. Such  
super-fine particles cannot be dislodged from the lungs by coughing;  
some will make their way into internal organs and bone, where they can  
irradiate nearby cells and eventually cause genetic mutations that lead  
to cancer.'

03-- electromagnetic trash & treasure

// the plan is to ship nuke waste from all over the .US via truck
// and railroads, to store at Yucca mountain. one broken axle...

Yucca critics cite foul-up with reactor shipment // drudgereport.com

	'The nuclear reaction that boils water to generate steam for  
electricity took place in the vessel before the plant closed in 1997.  
Although still hazardous, it is not as radioactive as the spent fuel  
rods set to go to the Yucca site, 90 miles northwest of Las Vegas.' ..  
'The truck carrying the vessel broke an axle en route between  
Charlevoix and Gaylord, Mich., and it pulled over to the side of a  
road, where it was fixed.' .. 'The company then parked the truck  
Tuesday night near a gas station -- that also serves as a bus stop for  
13 elementary and high school students -- until the waste can be  
transferred to a train that stops in Gaylord. The truck was still there  
this morning. Company officials expected the transfer to take two to  
four days.'

Doctor Makes Rare Protest Over Nobel Prize // via drudgereport.com

	'"When the announcement came out, my reaction was that I had been  
robbed of 33 years of my identity," Damadian, 67, told Reuters in a  
telephone interview. "The Nobel committee is rewriting history and is  
engaged in a revision of history."' .. 'Damadian discovered in 1970  
that differences between cancerous tissue and normal tissue could be  
seen using nuclear magnetic resonance, a precursor to MRI technology.  
His Melville, New York-based company makes and designs MRI scanners  
that allow patients to stand up during the procedure.'

04-- electromagnetic security & surveillance

// it's said that some 'sweepers' can also, at times, install bugs.

Mayor Street's office bugged // via TSCM-L
	'What was found was described by one top investigator as an "extremely  
sophisticated" battery-powered device designed to broadcast to a remote  
location, such as another building or a van parked outside.' ..  
'"Whoever did it was professional," an official said.' .. 'The bug was  
not a recording device. The base unit for the device was in the ceiling  
above the mayor's desk. Several remote microphones were placed in the  
ceiling throughout the spacious office.' .. 'The unit had enough  
battery power to operate for several months.' ... 'The discovery  
yesterday came at a time of heightened worry in the Street camp about  
surveillance. About two weeks ago, the Street campaign hired a private  
security firm to conduct a sweep of the campaign office on Cherry  
Street, near 16th Street. No bugs were found.'

// paper checks to paperless electrons, refers to 9-11+transport

House OKs electronic clearing of checks // .US

05-- electromagnetic power & energy

// anti-gravity has been in the news this year a few times
// and so it may be acclimatizing such new information for
// its eventual debut, if the scientific knowledge exists.
// curious if it is related to the hall effect, something of
// interest in learning about various electronic sensors,
// such as thermisters which can tell the temperature by
// relating its resistence to current in a circuit, or the
// photovoltaic or piezo-electric sensors that can do many
// things, as with lasers, IR LEDs, there is a lot of these
// technologies that are immediately available to experiment
// with as a hobbyist, in basic ways, to learn some basics.

QUOTE: New technology from 'black world'

	'Nowadays, phased-array antennae allow you to park your new car in  
small parking spaces with audio queues.  This was once black  

Solar's Seen in Shades of Green // 'net zero' e-bills

	'Several homes on the tour boasted $50 to $100 annual electricity  
bills, which represent just the cost of the meter itself. The price of  
installation, however, is steep -- often between $20,000 and $80,000,  
depending on the home's expected electricity needs. At those prices,  
many solar-power systems on the tour extended far beyond the size and  
lifestyle of the average American home.'

'Too little' oil for global warming // 'reassuring'

The Great Energy Scam -- How a plan to cut oil imports turned
into a corporate giveaway. a TIME investigation // syn-fuel.

	'... in the case of a strange kind of  American alchemy involving  
coal, don't expect to be welcome on a  plant tour. The reason isn't  
that secrecy is necessary to protect a  technological marvel but just  
the opposite. What you would see behind the curtain is a scheme that  
would make the Wizard of Oz envious.' ... 'What happens inside them? To  
alter coal's chemistry so it qualifies  as a synthetic fuel even though  
it looks and burns like regular coal,  some plants merely spray newly  
mined coal with diesel fuel, pine-tar  resin, limestone, acid or other  
substances. Others mix coal waste  with chemicals, coat it with latex  
and blend it with untreated coal  to form briquettes. And plant  
operators in some extreme cases do  nothing at all. Whatever the  
process, it's still coal.'

// some oil/energy-related Americana, interesting WSJ backstory...

Unsolved Mystery: Is Brewster Jennings Linked to the CIA?

AAA Battery Gets a Mini-Me

	'The team at Quallion , which developed the battery in conjunction  
with Argonne National Laboratory , says the key to the lifespan of the  
battery is its chemistry.' .. 'The researchers isolated a phase of a  
polysiloxane polymer, a material that has the highest conductivity ever  
reported for an electrical conductor.' .. 'Recharging is done  
wirelessly by an external electrical field, meaning implants no longer  
have to be surgically removed and replaced when the battery runs out of  

NASA Selects Two Magnetospheric Mission Proposals For Feasibility
Studies // Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission (MMS). IMG. thanks *

'Mud wall' house scoops award: An ecologically-friendly house
featuring mud walls and solar panels has won a design award.

06-- electromagnetic current & human affairs

// k-street... of reality-tv with politicians and lobbyists...

Clooney's blend of fact and fiction has Capitol Hill abuzz

[and] SPECIAL SECTION -- Murray Associates visits "K Street"
HBO television this Sunday (10/12) at 10PM

	'This week Murray Associates swept James Carville's "K Street"  
offices. Our inspection process will be briefly highlighted on this  
week's episode along with the special detection instrumentation we  
developed  - Thermal Emissions Spectrum Analysis (TESA (R)), and Radio  
Reconnaissance Spectrum Analysis (RRSA (R)).'

Welcome to the IEEE // thanks *
< http://www.ieee.org/portal/>

07-- electromagnetic transport & communication

NASA Successfully Flies First Laser-powered Aircraft // drudgereport
	'The  team has developed and demonstrated a small-scale aircraft that  
flies solely  by means of propulsive power delivered by an invisible,  
ground-based  laser. The laser tracks the aircraft in flight, directing  
its energy beam at  specially designed photovoltaic cells carried  
onboard to power the plane's  propeller.'

Clever motor leads to talking vacuum cleaners // via NewsScan...

	'Unlike an AC motor, a switched reluctance motor has a series of  
electric coil windings mounted around an iron rotor attached to a  
central drive shaft. There is no need for electricity to be applied to  
the rotor itself.' .. 'By sequentially switching the coil currents on  
and off using the control electronics, the magnetic poles on the rotor  
can be made to continually "chase" the field. The rotor continually  
seeks the point of least magnetic resistance - reluctance - between two  
opposing coils. And the lack of contacting elements means the motor can  
turn much faster than an AC motor.'

// will there be a North American automobile market in 2010?

GM: Fuel-Cell Cars Trump Hybrids // 1970s all over again...


	'The Glowbugs e-mailing list covers the hands-on use of vacuum tube  
technology in amateur radio equipment of the bygone era. Home-built  
equipment from the early 1920's through the 1970's is within its scope.'

08-- electromagnetic matter & information

The Next Big Chill-- Physicists close in on a new state of matter

	'It occurs in objects as diverse as superconductors, atomic nuclei and  
neutron stars. Several research groups are in a race to re-create it in  
the laboratory in microscopic specks of ultracold gas. If they succeed,  
it will enable experimental studies of processes that have heretofore  
been the domain of theorists. "It" is a superfluid state of matter  
predicted to occur when quantum particles that normally shun one  
another pair up and behave en masse as a single body of fluid.'

Charles Arthur on Technology
'Treemap offers a new way of visualising complex data. Nothing beats it  
for simplicity and the "wow!" effect when you first use it'

Strain Changes Semiconductors, Researchers Claim
Growing atomic layers of certain materials on a semiconductor surface  
creates a strain that induces a large energy conversion and emits light  
in the entire range of the visible spectrum -- a finding that could  
lead to the design of new multifunctional materials.

Test Equipment: Meters, Meter Shunts, Spectrum Analyzer

The Spectrum Analyzer Project

09-- electromagnetic trends & inventions

// this e-clothing article makes it curious if any of the risks
// of having electronics close to the body, and like the cell-
// phone events where they blow up or start on fire, may be a
// sideffect, instead of car tires and rollovers, it may be a
// high-static electricity atmosphere (lightning storm) and the
// electronic t-shirt with temperature sensor built-in, unknown
// if this will be considered in the realm of fashion design...
// also, after finding out that there are these thermistors for
// sensing temperature, it seems incredible that such sensors
// are already not in every watch and clock, in addition to
// other readings, such as UV, with solar cells, all doable...

Tech out the latest in fashion // electromagnetic clothing...

	'Scientists, retailers and fashion designers around the world are  
racing to deliver their future vision of haute couture. So just how far  
are we from wearing "smart" clothes?' ... [an aside--] 'Several  
internet companies sell dresses, shirts, caps, bras and boxer shorts  
impregnated with metals that reportedly keep out the high-frequency  
electromagnetic radiation some people believe causes cancer.'

10-- electromagnetic weaponry & warfare

US State Department protests televangelist's nuclear threat // drudge

	'Robertson, who has been a frequent critic of the State Department,  
made the offending comments during an interview with a like-minded  
critic of US diplomacy, columnist Joel Mowbray, who has written a book  
entitled "Dangerous Diplomacy: How the State Department Threatens  
American Security."  ..  "I read your book," Robertson said, according  
to a transcript of the interview posted on his Christian Broadcasting  
Network's website (www.cbn.com).' .. '"When you get through, you say,  
'If I could just get a nuclear device inside Foggy Bottom, I think  
that's the answer'," he said.' .. '"I mean, you get through this, and  
you say, 'We've got to blow that thing up.' I mean, is it as bad as you  
say?" Robertson asked.' .. 'Mowbray responded: "It is."'


	'~It's not impossible to win; once in a while you may get lucky with  
your Nerf ball... (But) unlike Nerf balls, intercontinental ballistic  
missiles travel at thousands of miles per hour.  Try the game by  
hurling golf balls or steel ball bearings, instead of Nerf balls, and  
you'll get the idea.  And maybe a few broken windows. too.'

11-- electromagnetic business & economics

Mexican Tycoon Urges Better Infrastructure // living standards, cells

Chip output nears full capacity: Manufacturers use 90% of
capacity in September, and analysts see expansion on the way.

Intel Chairman Says U.S. Is Losing Edge

	'One of the founding fathers of the nation's high-technology industry  
warned in dire terms yesterday that U.S. dominance in key tech sectors  
is in jeopardy, threatening the country's economic recovery and  
growth.' ... '... ominously, Grove said, the software and services  
industries -- strong drivers of U.S. economic growth for nearly two  
decades -- show signs of emulating the struggles of the U.S. steel and  
semiconductor industries.'

12-- electromagnetic artworks & artifacts

Vintage PCs Evoke Sweet Memories // Vintage Computer Festival

// electromagnetic engines, chassis, detailing, etc. after
// dissecting a PC for the first time, it was realized that
// it is very much like early classes in taking apart frogs
// (maybe a preserved pig or shark, something like that) and
// pulling these pieces of the creature out, to learn about
// how they work together (CPU, drives, wiring - heart, senses,
// nerve system). pulling apart a computer as an exercise in
// learning about electromagnetism could be a good way to
// relate diverse subjects in diverse ways, such as basics
// and history of electronics (vacuum tubes/transistors, etc)
// to the process for computation, to how circuit boards work
// together and separately, for instance, what seem to be
// controller boards attached to harddrives (circuit boards)
// in turn, then attached by cable to the main computer...

Extreme machines: Don't like your PC's beige box? Think the chip's just  
too darned slow? Join the DIY enthusiasts who have turned customisation  
into an art form. Michael Pollitt reports

Museums of Tomorrow: An Internet Conference


DATABASE OF VIRTUAL ART at Humboldt University of Berlin
presents VIRTUAL ART : new video documentation // INSEA-L

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