TotalMark's Stream of Consciousness

I'll post what I like, have created, or feel like sharing here.
dennys:

welcome to dencon. on your birthday you get an extra hour in the pit.

dennys:

welcome to dencon. on your birthday you get an extra hour in the pit.

Thomas The Tank Engine Crash Compilation

(Source: youtube.com)

How to fix electronics like Thor would! - Imgur

How to fix electronics like Thor would! - Imgur

make’em books - Imgur

make’em books - Imgur

LED Movie Poster Light Box - Imgur

LED Movie Poster Light Box - Imgur

Lego bricks are great for building toy houses, but one company has taken things a step further by modelling a new “smart brick” on the toy. The brainchild of Kite Bricks, Smart Bricks look almost exactly like large-scale Lego bricks, with raised knobs along the top that slot into grooves in the bottom of other bricks which allow them to snap together. The bricks are made from high-strength concrete, held in place by adhesive rather than mortar, and reinforced by steel bars if necessary. Currently in the prototype phase, Kite Bricks is working on launching the product officially, but the group has ambitious plans for the concept.

Lego bricks are great for building toy houses, but one company has taken things a step further by modelling a new “smart brick” on the toy. The brainchild of Kite Bricks, Smart Bricks look almost exactly like large-scale Lego bricks, with raised knobs along the top that slot into grooves in the bottom of other bricks which allow them to snap together. The bricks are made from high-strength concrete, held in place by adhesive rather than mortar, and reinforced by steel bars if necessary. Currently in the prototype phase, Kite Bricks is working on launching the product officially, but the group has ambitious plans for the concept.

maddy-314:

anotherfirebender:

kinderhook-obscure:

shit-justice-warrior:

Why aren’t we doing this in all 50 states??


moving to Iowa


Why not have women take the course also? Not just men commit rape, you know. It may not be as prevalent (woman on male sexual assault), but it does happen. I just don’t understand how this will help stop rape…? It’s not like a man is programmed to rape people, nor is a woman. But when someone makes bad choices and decides to break the law, a whole gender/sex should not be blamed for their actions. This is equivalent to saying all Muslims are terrorists, or all Germans are Nazis, and so on.

Requiring all males? What if the females were required to take a course, tumblr would be outraged.

maddy-314:

anotherfirebender:

kinderhook-obscure:

shit-justice-warrior:

Why aren’t we doing this in all 50 states??

moving to Iowa

Why not have women take the course also? Not just men commit rape, you know. It may not be as prevalent (woman on male sexual assault), but it does happen. I just don’t understand how this will help stop rape…? It’s not like a man is programmed to rape people, nor is a woman. But when someone makes bad choices and decides to break the law, a whole gender/sex should not be blamed for their actions. This is equivalent to saying all Muslims are terrorists, or all Germans are Nazis, and so on.

Requiring all males? What if the females were required to take a course, tumblr would be outraged.

(via saminoacid)

The ‘Factor’ host told an appreciative audience of Manhattan ‘folks’ Wednesday what he really thinks of his coworkers. (Hint: Greta and Shep are liberals.) Whatever will Ailes say?

The ‘Factor’ host told an appreciative audience of Manhattan ‘folks’ Wednesday what he really thinks of his coworkers. (Hint: Greta and Shep are liberals.) Whatever will Ailes say?

mindblowingscience:

pickledpennies:

m00nchaser:

If bees become extinct we will have exactly 4 YEARS to live on this planet. I don’t understand how “not giving a fuck” is more important than your life…

okay, I have a thing to say about this. I’m no expert on bees, but I am a biologist (and entomologist) so I think there is something I can contribute that’ll be of worth.

I agree entirely with the sentiment that we must protect honeybees. Obviously they are massively important for biodiversity, as well as pollinating food crops for humans. There is no doubt that if all the honeybees in the world were to vanish in a day that the consequences would be dire.

However, I disagree that the main cause for concern regarding honeybee death is the use of Genetically Modified (GM) crops. I’d be very interested to read a research paper that says ‘GM crops have killed millions of honeybees’, if indeed such a paper exists because in all honesty I find it highly unlikely that this is a true statement.

Let’s start with some facts about GM crops:

1. The development of GM crops is a highly regulated process, bound by strict country-specific legislature. A great number of trials are carried out long before commercial planting of a GM crop is even considered. It is these trials, and accompanying laboratory studies, that ensure a GM crop is safe to non-target organisms (such as honeybees) by investigating direct and indirect effects (Nap et al. 2003).

2. Crops that are genetically modified to express insecticidal proteins (for crop pest control) have a high level of specificity. This means that the insecticidal proteins being produced by the GM plant will only affect a narrow range of insect groups because of the chemical properties of the protein. For example, GM crops expressing insecticidal proteins sourced from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) will only target some Lepidopteran pests (caterpillars; Romeis et al. 2006). Furthermore, a recent meta-analysis of the literature found that GM Bt crops do not negatively affect the survival of adult honeybees or their larvae (Duan et al. 2008).

3. GM crops can be tailored such that the novel gene is expressed only in particular parts of the plant. For example, GM Bt rice plants express the toxin in the stems but not the grains (Datta et al. 1998). This technique means that gene expression can be excluded from the flowers/pollen of the crop plant, so that bees and other pollinators would not be affected. Neat, huh?

So those are a token few reasons why GM crops are safer than perhaps many people believe (as the result of a lot of questionable, non-scientific articles). To come back to our main point about honeybee death, I would like to briefly mention a few alternative explanations for the recent decline in honeybee populations. These are as follows:

1. Many bees have died as the result of broad-spectrum insecticide use. These are pesticides that lack specificity, and can be harmful to non-target organisms. Neonicotinoids are a well-studied example of this (Decourtye & Devillers, 2010). Not to worry, though, because many broad-spectrum pesticides including neonics are well on their way out. Indeed, the EU recently banned a large cohort of neonic pesticides. This is still a topic of controversy, mind (Goulson, 2013).

2. Many bees have died as the result of Varroa mite infestation. Imagine you’ve been bitten by several ticks, except those ticks are the size of dinner plates. That gives you an idea of the severity of a Varroa mite infestation on a single developing bee. The parasitisation of bees by Varroa mites and other parasites is often accompanied by disease transmission. This can result in colonies dying within two years after infestation (Johnson, 2011).

3. Many bees have died as the result of ‘colony collapse disorder’.  This is a phrase that has popped up a lot recently, and is basically an umbrella term for the various causes of bee death including parasite infestation, disease transmission, environmental stresses, and management stresses such as poor nutrition (Johnson, 2011). Colony collapse has been attributed to broad-spectrum pesticide use in some instances. However, it is has still been observed in countries where broad-spectrum pesticides have been withdrawn (in the EU, like I mentioned earlier; Johnson, 2011).

So those are my main points. Please excuse the bullet-point nature of this; I was trying to keep it fairly short. Not sure I managed that haha. But anyway, my take-home message is that GM crops are not the enemy when it comes to honeybee decline. If anything, bees are at much greater danger from the use of broad-spectrum pesticides and from parasites and diseases. Using GM can even help to alleviate some of the problems associated with broad-spectrum pesticides, as they greatly reduce the need to apply such chemicals (Romeis et al. 2006).

A finishing note: Do your homework. Go on google scholar and read some of the literature, making sure it is recent (within the past 10-15 years). Literature reviews are a great way to find out what the consensus is on any given topic. Don’t use popular media as your main source of information where science is concerned; they tend to favour scandal and exaggeration. You want to know what’s really going on? Check out some research articles and see for yourself.

Thanks for sticking it through to the end of this impromptu mini-essay! —Alice

References:

Datta, K., Vasquez, A., Tu, J., Torrizo, L., Alam, M. F., Oliva, N., Abrigo, E., Khush, G. S., & Datta, S. K. (1998). Constitutive and tissue-specific differential expression of the cryIA (b) gene in transgenic rice plants conferring resistance to rice insect pest. Theoretical and Applied Genetics, 97(1-2), 20-30.

Decourtye, A., & Devillers, J. (2010). Ecotoxicity of neonicotinoid insecticides to bees. In Insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (pp. 85-95). Springer New York.

Duan, J. J., Marvier, M., Huesing, J., Dively, G., & Huang, Z. Y. (2008). A meta-analysis of effects of Bt crops on honey bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae). PLoS One, 3(1), e1415.

Goulson, D. (2013). Neonicotinoids and bees: What’s all the buzz?. Significance, 10(3), 6-11.

Johnson, R. (2011). Honey bee colony collapse disorder. DIANE Publishing.

Nap, J. P., Metz, P. L., Escaler, M., & Conner, A. J. (2003). The release of genetically modified crops into the environment. The Plant Journal, 33(1), 1-18.

Romeis, J., Meissle, M., & Bigler, F. (2006). Transgenic crops expressing Bacillus thuringiensis toxins and biological control. Nature biotechnology, 24(1), 63-71.

This commentary is SO important. Succinct and with proper sourcing; beautiful.

It infuriates me when people blame GMO for everything without actually examining the evidence.

It’s not GMOs that are killing the bees, it’s cell phone towers.

(Source: antinwo, via lovelyardie)

tombstone-actual:

fiorenn:

The washdown feature on a warship has two functions, firefighting and surrounding the ship in a haze of water that prevents radioactive or chemical materials from entering the interior 


That’s awesome

Shields up!

tombstone-actual:

fiorenn:

The washdown feature on a warship has two functions, firefighting and surrounding the ship in a haze of water that prevents radioactive or chemical materials from entering the interior 

That’s awesome

Shields up!

(via 12-gauge-rage)

imminentdeathsyndrome:

In April last year, Kent’s Kirsty Sowden - a former John Lewis shop assistant - was jailed for just 14 months after crying rape over a fully consensual encounter with a man she’d met online. He was arrested at his workplace in front of colleagues and detained in a cell, wasting 376 hours of police time and costing £14,000.
In May 2012, 20 year-old Hanna Byron was spared jail after falsely accusing her ex-boyfriend of rape in revenge for breaking up with her.
In August, Sheffield’s Emma Saxon was jailed for making a second false rape allegation against her boyfriend, Martin Blood. He was held in police custody for 14 hours and subjected to an intrusive medical examination - all because he’d stood her up. 
Meanwhile, Teesside’s Joanne Buckley was jailed for three years in September after stabbing a man because he refused to have sex with her - then threatening to cry rape if he went to hospital for treatment.
These cases - and the many, many more like them - are exactly why men deserve protecting by the law as much as women. 
Tellingly, my opinion is shared by the majority of Britain. In 2010, a poll conducted by MailOnline showed that 67 per cent of readers want pre-conviction anonymity for rape defendants, as opposed to 33 per cent who don’t.
Originally, the law agreed. In 1976, the Labour government introduced rape trial anonymity for both the alleged victim and the accused. It operated this way until 1988, when guidelines were relaxed to help police investigations. 
At the time, the media was far less powerful, less global, less permanent than it is today. There was no internet, no slew of gossip magazines, no mobile phones with cameras, no social networking sites. 
Police techniques and technology were also less refined, so a lack of anonymity helped them.
Now, things are different. Dramatically so. And - once again - the law should change to reflect this. 
Why? Because a not guilty verdict is no longer enough to repair the planet-sized crater of damage caused by weeks of daily headlines across the globe.
Perhaps more importantly, it’s also a human right to be innocent until proven guilty.
Feminists like Julie Bindel disagree. She seems to believes that men deserve the stain of rape stigma, guilty or not, simply because they are male. In fact, she once said being falsely accused wasn’t so bad. ‘A fair number of celebrities have been accused of rape in the past and do not seem to have suffered longer term,’ she incredulously wrote in The Guardian. ‘To say that an accusation ruins lives is perhaps a sweeping generalisation.’
Perhaps she should speak to Peter Bacon. In 2009, he was cleared by a jury in just 40 minutes after being falsely accused of rape by a woman he met through a one-night stand. Although he was totally exonerated, the incident was so traumatic that he changed his name and left the country. His life was utterly destroyed. 
Meanwhile, the accuser kept her anonymity - and, for all we know, went on to accuse others. Where’s the fairness in that?

imminentdeathsyndrome:

In April last year, Kent’s Kirsty Sowden - a former John Lewis shop assistant - was jailed for just 14 months after crying rape over a fully consensual encounter with a man she’d met online. He was arrested at his workplace in front of colleagues and detained in a cell, wasting 376 hours of police time and costing £14,000.

In May 2012, 20 year-old Hanna Byron was spared jail after falsely accusing her ex-boyfriend of rape in revenge for breaking up with her.

In August, Sheffield’s Emma Saxon was jailed for making a second false rape allegation against her boyfriend, Martin Blood. He was held in police custody for 14 hours and subjected to an intrusive medical examination - all because he’d stood her up. 

Meanwhile, Teesside’s Joanne Buckley was jailed for three years in September after stabbing a man because he refused to have sex with her - then threatening to cry rape if he went to hospital for treatment.

These cases - and the many, many more like them - are exactly why men deserve protecting by the law as much as women. 

Tellingly, my opinion is shared by the majority of Britain. In 2010, a poll conducted by MailOnline showed that 67 per cent of readers want pre-conviction anonymity for rape defendants, as opposed to 33 per cent who don’t.

Originally, the law agreed. In 1976, the Labour government introduced rape trial anonymity for both the alleged victim and the accused. It operated this way until 1988, when guidelines were relaxed to help police investigations. 

At the time, the media was far less powerful, less global, less permanent than it is today. There was no internet, no slew of gossip magazines, no mobile phones with cameras, no social networking sites. 

Police techniques and technology were also less refined, so a lack of anonymity helped them.

Now, things are different. Dramatically so. And - once again - the law should change to reflect this. 

Why? Because a not guilty verdict is no longer enough to repair the planet-sized crater of damage caused by weeks of daily headlines across the globe.

Perhaps more importantly, it’s also a human right to be innocent until proven guilty.

Feminists like Julie Bindel disagree. She seems to believes that men deserve the stain of rape stigma, guilty or not, simply because they are male. In fact, she once said being falsely accused wasn’t so bad. ‘A fair number of celebrities have been accused of rape in the past and do not seem to have suffered longer term,’ she incredulously wrote in The Guardian. ‘To say that an accusation ruins lives is perhaps a sweeping generalisation.’

Perhaps she should speak to Peter Bacon. In 2009, he was cleared by a jury in just 40 minutes after being falsely accused of rape by a woman he met through a one-night stand. Although he was totally exonerated, the incident was so traumatic that he changed his name and left the country. His life was utterly destroyed. 

Meanwhile, the accuser kept her anonymity - and, for all we know, went on to accuse others. Where’s the fairness in that?

(via ancap-princess)