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Unstrange Phenomena

27 September 2010

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 27 Sept 2010

*** Check out news, political opinion, political humor and funny cartoons, recipes, poetry, funny posts, photography, science news, spiritual thoughts and great quotes.





The Social Poets:

White House Staff Shakeup: Who Stays, Who Goes - Choices narrowing down as who leaves or who stays on the White House staff.

America and World Politics Cartoons - 25 Sept 2010 - Check out cartoonist opinion on American and world politics this week.

Is BP Fund Czar Feinberg in BPs Pocket? - The lies and promises unfulfilled keep coming from BP and Feinberg, the BP Fund Claims Czar.

King Abdullah II Talks Huge Middle East Gamble for Sept 30 - King Abdullah II talks strategy for successful Middle East Peace with Jon Stewart.

Wars Overseas, Wars in Congress, Wars in White House, New Book: Obamas Wars - Wars overseas, wars in Congress and wars in the White House are why our government is not working.

Presidential Memoirs: Who Bombed, Who Soared and Why - Check out some fun facts about presidential memoirs, how well they were paid and who really wrote some of them.

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 19 Sept 2010




The Soul Calendar:


Rare: Super Harvest Moon Occurs On Fall Solstice - Check out rare summer-autumn twilight glow that only happens about every 20 years.




Dennys Funny Quotes:


Funny Hunh?! Cartoons - 25 Sept 2010 - Check out this week's amusing observations about Life: relationships, pets and the tech world cartoons.

22 Funny Situational Hunh?! Cartoons - 18 Sept 2010 - Check out the funny twisted minds of cartoonists as they envision various life situations.

25 Ridiculously Funny Celebrity Duck Face Photos - Laugh at celebrities posing for the camera, mocking sexy.


Republican Tea Party of the Devil: Meet Satanist Christine ODonnell - Tea Party Delaware Senate nominee admits to practicing witchcraft and Satanism.




Visual Insights:


Cartoons About Our American Economy - 25 Sept 2010 - Check out cartoonist opinions this week on the state of the American economy.

Dennys Photo Gallery: Our Mysterious Moon - The moon continues to fascinate humanity - and creative photographers.

Dennys Photo Gallery: Swinging Good Fun!

Arts: Fun Incredible Beach Art Photos

Raucous Tea Party Republicans Cartoons - 21 Aug 2010 - Check out what the cartoonists are lampooning about the Tea Party and the Republican idea of politics this time!

Dennys Photo Gallery: Beautiful Yummy Artichokes and 11 Recipes

Arts: Whimsical Fiber Artist Ed Bing Lee - This fiber artist has a sense of the whimsy while he explores new ways to use simple knotting techniques to develop his art.

Funny Photos: How Your Brain Can Be Fooled

Dennys Photo Gallery: Summer Heat Wave

Dennys Photo Gallery: Beautiful Yummy Artichokes and 11 Recipes





Dennys People Watching:


Education Reformer Michelle Rhee Takes Hits For Bold Action - Take a look at town hall debate after viewing the education documentary film "Waiting For Superman" as NBC kicks off their reports on education in America.

Funny Outrageous Tea Party Politics - Check out cartoonist opinion this week as they draw the funny happenings from the Tea Party.

American Education Sec. Arne Duncan Talks Reform in Education





Beautiful Illustrated Quotations:


President Theodore Roosevelt Quote About Courage

Do You Promote Others As Well As Yourself?

Meditative Moon Photos - The moon continues to fascinate humanity - and creative photographers.

7 Thoughtful Quotes About The Future - Enjoy these reflections upon how we think about our future.

A Healing Spiritual Poem: Waking The Day - Spiritual symbolism is all around us in our daily life, ready to help heal and balance.






Dennys Food and Recipes:

Sesame-Ginger Truffles From Culinary Institute of America - A simple tasty recipe worth of gift giving during the holidays.

Red Lobster Restaurant: Cheddar Bay Biscuits

4 Casseroles 4 School Night Dinners: Chicken, Tex Mex, Tamale, Shepherds Pie - Check out some family favorites, easy and quick to cook - and nutritious.

Muffin Monday: 5 Yummy Breakfast Muffins - Skip the coffee shop muffin, make your own, save some money and save a whole lot of calories too.



*** Coffee photo by Quoquo @ flickr



*** THANKS for visiting, feel welcome to drop a comment or opinion, enjoy bookmarking this post on your favorite social site, a big shout out to awesome current subscribers – and if you are new to this blog, please subscribe in a reader or by email updates!

*** Come by for a visit and check out my other blogs:

The Social Poets - news, politics
The Soul Calendar - science, astronomy, psychology
Visual Insights - photos, art, music
Beautiful Illustrated Quotations - spiritual quotes, philosophy
Best Spiritual Posts - my own best as well as links to other spiritual posts from all viewpoints
Poems From A Spiritual Heart - poetry
The Healing Waters - health news
Dennys People Watching - people in the news
Dennys Food and Recipes
Dennys Funny Quotes - humor

22 September 2010

Rare: Super Harvest Moon Occurs On Fall Solstice

Check out rare summer-autumn twilight glow that only happens about every 20 years.




From Denny: Check out tonight's Super Harvest Moon! It happens to occur on the Fall Solstice with the setting sun that bringing this summer season to a close. Someone tell that to our Louisiana weather guy still predicting 90-degree heat through the week, well above average temperature for this area.

What's so special about this Super Harvest Moon that has people all gaga-faced is that it will produce a wonderful glow. The glowing light is from the rising moon and setting sun that create this 360-degree summer-autumn twilight glow which only happens rarely.

Make sure to observe the moon during its rise as you will find it appears to be inflated. Astronomers and physicists have yet to figure out why this happens. The low-hanging moon appears to be much wider than it actually is, creating an illusion. We all have heard the old songs about moon magic. Hmmmm... maybe there is something there after all. :)

Keep looking up as the view only gets better. The precise time of the autumnal equinox is 11:09 PM EDT, where summer changes over to fall. The Harvest Moon will be high overhead by this time along with its very visible partner, the planet Jupiter. They will be easy to find as they will be the two brightest in the sky.

Where did the name of Harvest Moon originate? As you can guess it had to do with farmers and agriculture. Before the days of electricity farmers used the full moon to extend their working days beyond the sunset. In fact, this Harvest Moon shone so bright it helped them finish up harvesting so they could get their crops to the market in time.

Usually, the Harvest Moon falls a few days or weeks before or after the fall equinox. It's called the Super Harvest Moon because it falls exactly on the fall equinox. The last time it happened was back in 23 Sept 1991. It won't come this way again until the year 2029. So enjoy it while it lasts!








And check out Jupiter:






*** For more Moon Magic check out these great photos:

Dennys Photo Gallery: Our Mysterious Moon - The moon continues to fascinate humanity - and creative photographers.


Check out how they celebrate the Autumn Festival across Asia for the Harvest Moon:


Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy




*** THANKS for visiting, feel welcome to drop a comment or opinion, enjoy bookmarking this post on your favorite social site, a big shout out to awesome current subscribers – and if you are new to this blog, please subscribe in a reader or by email updates!

*** Come by for a visit and check out my other blogs:

The Social Poets - news, politics
The Soul Calendar - science, astronomy, psychology
Visual Insights - photos, art, music
Beautiful Illustrated Quotations - spiritual quotes, philosophy
Poems From A Spiritual Heart - poetry
The Healing Waters - health news
Dennys People Watching - people in the news
Dennys Food and Recipes
Dennys Funny Quotes - humor

19 September 2010

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 19 Sept 2010

*** Check out news, political opinion, political humor and funny cartoons, recipes, poetry, funny posts, photography, science news, spiritual thoughts and great quotes.





From Denny: Am I'm busy playing "catch up" with all these posts in draft form - after 10 days off line, changing internet providers. :) Hope everyone had a great weekend!


The Social Poets:

Economy, World Politics, BP Oil Spill Cartoons - 18 Sept 2010 - Check out what the cartoonists think this week about the American economy, world and American politics and villainous BP's oil spill aftermath.

Waking The Day poem - Libations Friday 17 Sept 2010 - When the day - and I - awaken, present in the moment.

Obamas Popularity, Polls Roundup of American Opinion - 16 Sept 2010 - Check out this week's polling of Americans from the President's approval rating, tax cuts, anti-Muslim feelings to frustration with our politicians.

Good Move, Mr. Prez: Safeguarding The Gulf on Oil Production - Today the President took new measures to watch dog the oil and gas industry, increasing the safety of our environment.

Roundup of Late Night Funnies - 14 Sept 2010 - Catch up on the latest comedic musings and amusements from Colbert, Stewart and late night show jokes, funny video clips and newest cartoons before they post for the week at other sites.

Funny Video: Stewart Mocks Gov. Jan Brewer Fiasco, Wonders Why Dems Are Lame - One of the best political critics around, Jon Stewart wonders why the Democrats just can't seem to win against inept lying Republicans.

Funny Video: Colbert Mocks Beck On His Restore Honor Rally - Only Colbert has the truthful tongue to whiplash Glenn Beck's bizarre arrogance with just the right touch of comedic art and campy irreverence.

Funny Video: Letterman and Olbermann Laugh at Republican 2012 Contenders - and Beck - Letterman and Olbermann suggest unlikely crazy Republican possibilities for the 2012 Presidential season.

Funny Video: Letterman Teases Obama For Frequent Vacations - Irreverent comic Letterman chides both Tiger Woods and Prez Obama for their ideas of relaxation.

Funny Video: Jon Stewart Mocks Florida Pastor Behind Planned Koran Bonfire - Comic Jon Stewart wasted no time in analyzing the Burn a Koran Day incident that had the entire world in an uproar from every religious corner.

Who Will Be Prez Obamas Next Chief of Staff? - Check out the leading contenders who can make or break the Democratic agenda.

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 12 Sept 2010 - Check out news, political opinion, political humor and funny cartoons, recipes, poetry, funny posts, photography, spiritual thoughts and great quotes.







Beautiful Illustrated Quotations:


7 Thoughtful Quotes About The Future - Enjoy these reflections upon how we think about our future.

A Healing Spiritual Poem: Waking The Day - Spiritual symbolism is all around us in our daily life, ready to help heal and balance.







Dennys Funny Quotes:


22 Funny Situational Hunh?! Cartoons - 18 Sept 2010 - Check out the funny twisted minds of cartoonists as they envision various life situations.

Republican Tea Party of the Devil: Meet Satanist Christine ODonnell - Tea Party Delaware Senate nominee admits to practicing witchcraft and Satanism.








Visual Insights:


Koran Book Burning, September 11th Cartoons - 18 Sept 2010 - Check out what the nation's cartoonists had to say about the Burn a Koran Day call from a Florida pastor who eventually backed down from his threat.

Dennys Photo Gallery: Our Mysterious Moon - The moon continues to fascinate humanity - and creative photographers.







Dennys Food and Recipes:


5 Easy Game Day Recipes For A Barbecue - Simple crowd pleasing recipes, easy to make, for your successful tailgating on game day weekends.

Cake Tuesday: Lemon Cheese-Filled Cake - Check out what heavenly confection you can do with a simple cake mix.







The Soul Calendar:


Mapping Our Complex Brains: Human Connectome Project - Fascinating new project mapping the complex circuitry of our brains.


*** Coffee photo by Quoquo @ flickr



*** THANKS for visiting, feel welcome to drop a comment or opinion, enjoy bookmarking this post on your favorite social site, a big shout out to awesome current subscribers – and if you are new to this blog, please subscribe in a reader or by email updates!

*** Come by for a visit and check out my other blogs:

The Social Poets - news, politics
The Soul Calendar - science, astronomy, psychology
Visual Insights - photos, art, music
Beautiful Illustrated Quotations - spiritual quotes, philosophy
Poems From A Spiritual Heart - poetry
The Healing Waters - health news
Dennys People Watching - people in the news
Dennys Food and Recipes
Dennys Funny Quotes - humor

17 September 2010

Mapping Our Complex Brains: Human Connectome Project

Fascinating new project mapping the complex circuitry of our brains.






Human Connectome Project

From Denny: There's circuitry and then there's our brain's circuitry. The brain is the last frontier for medical understanding about the body. Think of what it must be like to be a cartographer of the human brain: fascinating.

$30 million project

The Human Connectome Project has tasked itself with the lofty goal of achieving just that in only five years. And the consortium of 33 American researchers, at nine different institutions, have amassed a hefty $30 million to do it. This is the first of its kind effort to map the complex circuitry of the brain. They will be detailing every tiny connection that links to thousands of different brain regions.

The lead universities in this massive effort are Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the University of Minnesota's Center for Magnetic Resonance Research (CMRR). These two sites are where most of the brain scanning will take place.

What kind of brain scanners you ask?

Yes, there is another grant for that, the HCP grant of $8.5 milllion, from 16 areas of the National Institutes of Health. Massachusetts General Hospital and UCLA are on point to develop advanced, custom brain scanners. Those scanners will possess much higher spatial resolution and increased sensitivity.

Just how large is this project?

Try 90 billion neurons big. And that figure still doesn't touch the brain's large scale and complexity. The brain is estimated to possess at least 150 trillion synapses. Synapses are those connections that pass signals to and from neurons and electrical signals have to negotiate all this complexity. The neurons and the connections between them are what make up the circuitry of our brains.

"These cells and synapses form the circuits that underlie all our thinking and emotion – everything that makes each of us a unique individual," says David Van Essen, PhD, the Edison Professor and head of the Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology at Washington University.

What technology will they use?

The hope for this project is to accurately map out in great detail this complexity, going to the next level generation of medicine. To accomplish this feat researchers are tapping into state-of-the-art brain scanning technologies like diffusion imaging, various MRI methods, and magnetoencephalography. They will also utilize new brain analysis techniques.

Scanning techniques will include:

* diffusion imaging - a new form of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) that produces detailed information on cell structure by tracking the random movements of water molecules

* resting state functional MRI - monitors brain activity while subjects relax, to reveal which brain regions work in sync with each other via brain networks

* task-related functional MRI - helps associate particular capabilities with specific brain regions by tracking brain activity as subjects perform visual, motor, cognitive, and other tasks

* magnetoencephalography - monitors very rapid patterns of activity involving millions of brain cells but provides less specific spatial data


What else will researchers study as they map the brain?

Researchers want to map more than just how messages move through our brains. They want to view how the brain networks as various regions work together. To amass this information they are going to need a supercomputer (at Washington University's High Performance Computing Center) to process all the data collected.

What's a voxel?

The map resolutions will be focusing upon the intensely small, called a "voxel." A voxel is a small swath of grey brain matter containing about one million neurons each. Researchers estimate this project will generate about one petabyte of data it's so mind-boggling (or 1 quadrillion - 1,000,000,000,000,000 bytes).

Which part of the brain is going to receive the most study?

Efforts will be concentrated on the the cerebral cortex. Those wrinkled sheets of gray matter on both sides of the brain are where the most complex mental functions are carried out. Just visualize a funny looking wrinkly 14-inch pizza if these areas were spread out flat.

Did you know that each person's celebral cortex is different?

A brain's wrinkles and folds, the shape and size of the brain structures, even the wiring of the circuits vary a lot from person to person. Researchers want to better understand those variabilities and also any genetic underpinnings so they have decided to recruit 1,200 twins and siblings of twins in the project.

"This lets us look at the heritability of different brain circuits by comparing identical twins to non-identical twins and siblings," he explains. "It will also let us start linking various genes to specific aspects of brain circuitry."

New understanding of the brain to help with autism and schizophrenia

The hope is this new brain mapping of the complex circuitry will help neuro-scientists when they need to test their theories, hypotheses and other study findings against this data. Medicine continues to push the window on deeper understanding of how the brain functions so they can find cures for neurological disorders.

"This effort will have a major impact on our understanding of the healthy adult human brain," says lead investigator David Van Essen, PhD, the Edison Professor and head of the Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology at Washington University. "It will also enable future projects that probe what changes in brain circuits underlie a broad variety of disorders, such as autism and schizophrenia."

"In the last two decades, scientists have developed a fantastic number of tools for non-invasive study of the human brain," says lead investigator Kamil Ugurbil, PhD, director of the CMRR and the McKnight Presidential Chair Professor of Radiology, Neurosciences and Medicine at the University of Minnesota. "The connectome project will significantly advance these techniques, many of which are based on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and apply them to generate unprecedented insights into the connectivity and function of the brain."

"On a scale never before attempted, this highly coordinated effort will use state-of-the-art imaging instruments, analysis tools and informatics technologies – and all of the resulting data will be freely shared with the research community," said Dr. Michael Huerta of the National Institute of Mental Health, who directs the NIH Connectome initiative. "Individual variability in brain connections underlies the diversity of our thinking, perception and motor skills, so understanding these networks promises advances in brain health."



*** THANKS for visiting, feel welcome to drop a comment or opinion, enjoy bookmarking this post on your favorite social site, a big shout out to awesome current subscribers – and if you are new to this blog, please subscribe in a reader or by email updates!

*** Come by for a visit and check out my other blogs:

The Social Poets - news, politics
The Soul Calendar - science, astronomy, psychology
Visual Insights - photos, art, music
Beautiful Illustrated Quotations - spiritual quotes, philosophy
Poems From A Spiritual Heart - poetry
The Healing Waters - health news
Dennys People Watching - people in the news
Dennys Food and Recipes
Dennys Funny Quotes - humor

12 September 2010

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 12 Sept 2010

*** Check out news, political opinion, political humor and funny cartoons, recipes, poetry, funny posts, photography, spiritual thoughts and great quotes.






From Denny: It's been a wild ride changing internet providers and I was off line for 10 days. I tell ya when you slow down to snail time it takes a while to gear back up to a fast pace. So, rather than try to catch up I've decided to round up what there is and not sweat what there isn't. Gee, can you tell I absorbed "Greek Time" when I visited Santorini several years ago? Greek Time is extremely slow, unhurried and a definite "I'll get around to it" attitude. :)



Recent Post Roundups:

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 22 Aug 2010

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 15 Aug 2010

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 8 Aug 2010



The Social Poets:

Who Will Be Prez Obamas Next Chief of Staff? - Check out the leading contenders who can make or break the Democratic agenda.

Middle East Peace, Koran Burning, Iraq War Cartoons - 11 Sept 2010 - The threatened burning of 200 Korans took center stage this week over the Middle East Peace process with the public and the cartoonists.

America and The Economy Cartoons - 11 Sept 2010 - America's economic sugar high is a rocky roller coaster ride that no one knows where it will go. Check out the latest cartoonist opinions.

The Understanding poem - Libations Friday 10 Sept 2010 - We build Peace in our lives a moment at a time - and this is a poem story of how it can start early in childhood as it did for me.

Call to Christians And Muslims Against Violence From Threat to Burn Koran - Phony Christian pastor incites international violence for threatening to burn the Koran.

Economy, America and World Politics Cartoons - 7 Sept 2010 - Check out this week's amusing cartoon commentary on our American politics.

Majority in Poll Say America Still Not Ready For Big Disasters - Our government has a long way to go to convince Americans it can handle large scale natural or man made disasters.

Roundup of Late Night Funnies - 23 Aug 2010 - Check out the latest jokes from late night comics this week, along with some of the most current cartoons and LOL funniest videos from the likes of Colbert and Stewart.

Funny Video: Stewart Rips Fox News Lies About Ground Zero Mosque - Comics have endless material ripped from true headlines, like Fox News creating controversy to keep from sinking lower in the news ratings.

Funny Video: Campy Bed Bug PSA - Leave it to Jon Stewart to ferret out the campiest PSA done on bedbugs.

Posts Roundup at Dennys Blogs - 22 Aug 2010 - Check out news, political opinion, political humor and funny cartoons, recipes, science news, poetry, funny posts, photography, spiritual thoughts and great quotes.




Beautiful Illustrated Quotations:

Ancient Healing Oil: Sandalwood - Modern technology life can be stressful and counter productive to spiritual growth. Try this essential oil to bring balance into your life.




Dennys Funny Quotes:

Prez Obama, Democrats, Trouble With Political Message Cartoons - 11 Sept 2010 - Cartoonists lampoon, and downright blast, the Democrats for doing a lousy job of getting out their message.

Funny Hunh?! Cartoons - 8 Sept 2010 - Check out this week's grinners to soothe your work week stress.

Funny Video: Bounty Mocks High School With Rap - Video: Bounty Brings It. Paper Towel Gang Keeps it Clean - great rap music video production for an ad.

Funny Work Cartoons - 23 Aug 2010 - Funny Work Cartoons - 23 Aug 2010




Visual Insights:

Dennys Photo Gallery: Swinging Good Fun! - Check out some wonderful photos from around the world validating how much we all have in common as children: we love to swing!

Arts: Fun Incredible Beach Art Photos - Check out the fun and funny creative designs for your latest version of the sand castle and sand art on your favorite beach.





Dennys Food and Recipes:


Celebrate: Yummy Southern Gulf Coast Shrimp and Crab Boil - Find out how easy it is to do your own shrimp and crab boil to celebrate the great seafood of the summer!


*** Coffee photo by Quoquo @ flickr (Brazil)


*** THANKS for visiting, feel welcome to drop a comment or opinion, enjoy bookmarking this post on your favorite social site, a big shout out to awesome current subscribers – and if you are new to this blog, please subscribe in a reader or by email updates!

*** Come by for a visit and check out my other blogs:

The Social Poets - news, politics
The Soul Calendar - science, astronomy, psychology
Visual Insights - photos, art, music
Beautiful Illustrated Quotations - spiritual quotes, philosophy
Poems From A Spiritual Heart - poetry
The Healing Waters - health news
Dennys People Watching - people in the news
Dennys Food and Recipes
Dennys Funny Quotes - humor
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