Daily Archives: January 14, 2008

The Origin of Syphilis

Blogging on Peer-Reviewed ResearchSyphilis is first clearly seen in Europe in 1495, when it appeared as a plague (though it was not “the blague” … Yersinia pestis) among Charles VIII’s troops. When these troops went home shortly after the fall of Naples, they brought this disease with them, staring an epidemic. The level of mortality in Europe was truly devastating. Is it the case that syphilis was brought to Europe by Columbus and his men just prior to the plague-like outbreak of 1495? Continue reading The Origin of Syphilis

Jehane Noujaim: TED Prize wish: Unite the world on Pangea Day, a global day of film

In this hopeful talk, 2006 TED Prize winner Jehane Noujaim unveils her wish: a global acceptance of diversity, mediated through the power of film. The first step? Getting people to understand each other. In 2003, Noujaim gained access to both sides of the story of the Iraq war for her film Control Room, a dichotomy she illustrates with provocative clips of Al Jazeera journalist Sameer Khader and U.S. press officer Josh Rushing. Noujaim ends by outlining her plans for Pangea Day, an event in which people all over the world can watch the same films at the same time. (Contains strong language.)

Continue reading Jehane Noujaim: TED Prize wish: Unite the world on Pangea Day, a global day of film

Thomas Barnett: The Pentagon’s new map for war and peace

In this bracingly honest and funny talk, international security strategist Thomas P.M. Barnett outlines a post-Cold War solution for the foundering US military: Break it in two. He suggests the military re-form into two groups: a Leviathan force, a small group of young and fierce soldiers capable of swift and immediate victories; and an internationally supported network of System Administrators, an older, wiser, more diverse organization that actually has the diplomacy and power it takes to build and maintain peace. Continue reading Thomas Barnett: The Pentagon’s new map for war and peace

Baby Orangutan

There is a new baby orangutan born at the Como Zoo in Saint Paul, Minnesota. I mention this for the edification of my local readers (who probably already know about it) and not as a statement of support or opposition to zoos, orangutans, or babies.Details, including photographs, here on Science Buzz.