A. Carnival of Space #46
1. Ten Things You Don't know about the Milky Way
on the Bad Astronomy blog.
2. The site Invitation to ETI site is interesting I can't decide if it's for real or tongue in check. The well known science fiction writer, David Brin, wrote a letter of invitation for alien lurkers who may just be following humanity via the web, acknowledging some of the reasons that they might not want to contact us. Just in case they are out there in the US or in northern Laos (huh, maybe not here, sometimes the internet connection isn't too good).
3. Actually I got the above link from Centaur's Dreams contribution - If the phone doesn't ring, it's me, admittedly a line from a Jimmy Buffet song. He links to several sites about why we haven't been contacted yet. Is it because space-faring civilizations have a non-interference policy (have they been watching Star Trek)?
The discussion reminds me of the wonderful Terry Bisson story They're Made out of Meat, where two aliens discuss the future of humanity. (Terry Bisson's official site) Check out the award-winning film based on the story
4. New resources to follow up, such as the Lunar and Planetary Institute, and Invitation to ETI site.
5. The space elevator was one of the technological ideas that Arthur C. Clarke thought up and developed in his fiction. The post on the New Frontiers blog, discusses the current work.
6. Astroengine has a mind-blowing piece on Cosmogenesis. Sit down before reading.
B. On the more physical plain, Polite Dissent hosted the Internet Grand Rounds, Volume 4, #26 on 18 March. His theme is Western - the Grand Round-up and includes posts:
1. Only Two Prayers on the blog Rickety Contrivances of Doing Good Susan Palwick is a science fiction/ fantasy writer who is a volunteer chaplain in a busy hospital. I visit her blog often because she has insights on many issues about health, illness, faith (and the questioning of it), life and death. All of her posts show the real grit, the dirt in the corners of the emergency room, and the true heights that people can rise to.
2. Diabetes Mine is one of the best blogs on all aspects of Diabetes. In this weeks contribution, she ponders Car Insurance vs. Health Insurance
3. I have lots of problems with back pain, so this post on Spotting Back Pain was interesting, after all the abdominal exercises I've done. It says that maintaining consciousness on the position of the spine and maintaining a neutral spine during daily activities is more important than doing badly done abdominal exercises, particularly crunches, the Gold Standard of abdominal exercises ( Good Life better than Bad Ab Exercises ) I clicked on another link and it promotes a book - but I do know that when I change my position when walking, I do feel better so maybe there's something there.
4. Another blog entry on promoting healthy brains is The Brain Virtues of Physical Exercise. Again it reminds me that I really have to exercise every day, no matter how hectic work can get. In the long and short run, it helps mental attitude, sharpness and new ways to look at problems. And it can prolong both longevity and quality of life.
5. In very well-written post, Chronic Dose , a young woman with a long list of chronic illnesses, writes about Writing Well - how writing helps people with chronic diseases. She point to an article in the New York Times, The Power of Words for Cancer Patients.
6. The blog, Canadian Medicine, writes about several literary internet-based discussion groups for health professionals. Several years ago, a doctor at Bellevue Medical Center in New York, Ruth Charon, had started to encourage her students to write. It developed empathy for their patients and allowed them to view their work in perspective. And the field of Narrative Medicine has developed.
7. The Health Concerns of Prostitutes points to an Australian study - prostitutes have 80x the number of STDs in illegal settings than in legal brothels. The author notes that there are prostitutes who are working in this profession because they want to, and those who are forced. In the legal settings, there are periodic health checks and condoms are manditory - with good results. However, the author of Health Line Connects questions - One aspect of the health care needs of prostitutes I would like to see addressed, though, is the psychological effect - long term and short term. Is it a high stress occupation? Are workers at risk for PTSD? Clearly, further study is needed.
8. Pain Management in nontraditional settings concerns managing pain in developing countries. Answer: make due with what you have. Ice packs for broken bones, whatever pain medicine is available and try to keep a positive face for the patient. Feeling frustrated in a situation of poor infrastructure and poverty is a normal feeling but medical staff still have to act professionally and try to do what they can to help patients.