Friday, December 14, 2007

Some Links

It's been an intense week - wonderful events, Hmong New Year, grief and a funeral.

Trying to take my mind off it by posting a few links.

I just discovered Uncyclopedia. It had me ga-fawing, in spite of myself.

Article on Astronomy

My favorite lines:
Every school kid knows that you can't create something out of nothing (unless you're an accountant), but creating EVERYTHING out of nothing seems to be OK, presumably as long you don't try and fit it through the eye of a needle. But this is all actually wrong, because mass and energy are interchangeable.

Astronomers currently believe that the universe is made out of space, which itself is made out of nothing.

A few articles on cluster bombs. This past week, 140 civil society groups and countries met in Vienna to discuss the initiative to ban cluster munitions. Already 83 countries support the initiative, with the major exceptions of the US, Russia and China, who are the main producers of these weapons of mass destruction. These mini-bombs are dropped in a canister which opens in mid-air, spreading the cluster bombs over a wide area. They were dropped in Laos and Vietnam, and the explosive is still active after 30 - 40 years in the ground, ready to explode if someone picks them up or even moves them.

Unfortunately, I've seen too many examples here in Laos of kid vs. cluster bomb.

The article from uncyclopedia on Cluster bombs is black humor with a kick; the article is written as a marketing strategy. "They will not explode when dropped, only when picked up by a child or other innocent civilian" the spokesman promises. Strangely enough, it gets to the essence of the thing - children in countries destroyed by war don't have the playthings found in the US. If they see the bright yellow of a cluster bomb, they'll pick it up to play with it.

A more sobering article on cluster bombs is on Wikipedia.

1 comment:

jientje said...

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