Twilight

Yes I admit, I am guilty, I too was/am in love with the Twilight saga.

I was sitting at Cup Of Joe’s at Easton Town Center, quite bored actually, and my sister had the book with her. I thought I would kill time by reading for a few minutes to an hour - YEAH RIGHT! I couldn’t stop reading, I read the 4 books in less than two weeks (would have been faster if I didn’t have school).

I can’t wait to see the movie, hopefully it’s not disappointing.

I found this video on YouTube, it is very cute and I love how the song (by Danity Kane) fits into the video.

How are memories stored and retrieved?

When you learn a new fact, there are physical changes happening in the structure of your brain. Our brain is full of vast synapses; these are tiny connections between neurons (brain cells). Memory storage depends on these synapses, but exactly how these synapses between neurons embody knowledge, or how memories get retrieved years later is a mystery at the moment.

Have you ever told yourself “That’s it-I forgot!” When trying to remember an interesting story or some fact that you know is inside your brain somewhere but you just can’t regurgitate it? Well there is actually a reason for this. The expression “Shoot! My brain cells are just not firing today” is very literal. When two cells are active at the same time, the connection between them strengthens, when one of them is not active, the connection weakens. Moreover, it turns out that the act of retrieval can destabilize the memory. When you recall a past event, the memory becomes temporarily susceptible to erasure. Moreover, it is actually possible to chemically block a memory during that time window. Now that’s a little scary especially when you know that the memory is not stable as it is.

Click here for some interactive videos that can help understand how neuron synapses work, and give a visual reference. I suggest to look at the last video first.

Source: Discover Magazine. August 2007. 10 Unsolved Mysteries of The Brain. Pg.56

Here is something ealisy forgotten - sleep

Yes, sleep. How often have you tried to stay awake for nearly 24 hours? Maybe to work, study for an exam, to finish a project, or just having fun partying with friends. No matter the reason sleep deprivation is a big risk, both for your health and your environment.

Twenty-four hours without sleep can produce as much impairment as being legally drunk.

As I was looking through www.howstuffworks.com I came across an interesting article. How Can Someone Stay Awake for 11 days? A man in Cornwall, England, actually went 11 consecutive days without a wink of sleep.

The Guinness Book of World Records no longer acknowledges sleep deprivation attempts because they feel that they’re too dangerous. In 1964 the record of 274 hours without sleep was set. This record was in the Guinness Book until they removed the category entirely in1989

Consequently, sleep deprivation is a major contributor to auto accidents and may have contributed to disasters such as the explosion at Chernobyl and the Exxon Valdez crash. Sleep deprivation is also a major concern for people working long hours (such as doctors and night shift employees) and for anyone suffering from sleep apnea, which causes high blood pressure, stress and low oxygen levels in the blood. Repeated sleep deprivation can increase your appetite and lead to weight gain.

Long-term sleep deprivation can cause vision problems, hallucinations, paranoia, mood swings, difficulty communicating or understanding others, a compromised immune system and depression.

Via: www.howstuffworks.cm article by Jacob Silverman.

Extreme Aircraft

Largest Cargo Planes: Aircraft are usually ranked by weight, the maximum takeoff weight. The world’s largest plane is the Antonov An-225 Mriya built in former Soviet Union. It’s maximum takeoff weight is over 1.3 million pounds (600,000 kg). It is commercially available for carrying ultra-heavy and oversize freight, up to 250,000 kg (550,000 lb) internally or 200,000 kg (440,000 lb) on the upper fuselage. Cargo on the upper fuselage can be 70 m long. A second An-225 was partially built during the late 1980s for use by the Soviet space program. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990 and the cancellation of the Buran space program, the second An-225 was placed in storage.

First Fastest Airplane: The Tupolev Tu-144 was the first commercial airplane to exceed Mach 2. In 1969, July 15th, this supersonic transport aircraft became the fastest commercial airline ever. In the sixties the engineers of the British/French “Concorde” and the Russian Tupolev TU-144 were competing for first place in getting a supersonic commercial plane airborne. On December 31, 1968 the first prototype of the Tupolev TU-144 took flight, before the Concorde did. After two severe crashes the flights were discontinued. The last regular flight of a Tu-144 took place on June 1, 1978. Tupolev Tu-144 was nicknamed Concordski, which sounds like a Russian surname, but very similar to Concorde. The only Tu-144 on display outside the former Soviet Union was acquired by the Auto & Tech Museum in Sinsheim, Germany, in 2001 and that’s where it now stands, in its original Aeroflot livery, on display next to an Air France Concorde.

Extreme Aircraft To be continued …

Via: http://www.aerospaceweb.org

Images via: http://www.vorontsov.nl/wings and http://en.wikivisual.com

Sun and Skin Damage

There are two types of ultraviolet rays, UVB and UVA. One easy way of remembering the Ultraviolet B is that it is the Burning type, this light is responsible for suntans as well as sunburns. Ultraviolet A rays are even more dangerous because they penetrate into the deeper layers of skin and contribute to premature aging of skin, with development of fine lines and wrinkles. Both of the rays can cause skin cancer such as basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma. UVB rays are more active and cause more damage during the summer months especially during midday, between 1-4PM. UVA on the other hand are active all year round in any weather and all day long. Unlike the UVB, UVA lights are not filtered through window glass. So your skin is getting damaged even when you are sitting inside a car on a cloudy day . Which means that even if you don’t go to a beach every summer and stay inside closed windows your skin can still age prematurely without protection.

How You Can Protect Yourself From The Damaging Effects Of UVB and UVA.

Most of us have heard the term SPF (sun protection factor) many times. However, the SPF only measures the protection against UVB and not UVA (because UVA rays were once thought to be safe). When you are buying a sun screen it is a good idea to look for these chemicals in a product; Parsol 1789 (avobenzone) which is a chemical blocker, or Microfine Zinc Oxide or Microfine Titanium Dioxide, which are physical blockers.

Sources: Eastside Dermatology, Alan J. Parks, MD, Stephanie L. Cotell, MD. (BCD)

Introduction blurb

Hello, welcome to my Page .

Here I am going to put things I find interesting…

Most of us eventually forget almost everything that we don’t use on daily basis so this is going to be my refresher page. Maybe you may find something useful here, too.

Note: I started this very recently so be patient, please.

Salima

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