Thursday, August 30, 2007

Remember This! … Fibroblast-Neprilysin

UNTREATED Alzheimer's Brain Cells

TREATED Alzheimer's Brain Cells

Plaques comprised of amyloid-beta are the hallmark pathology of Alzheimer's disease. In this study, the scientists used an amyloid-degrading enzyme to clear these amyloid cobwebs from the brain - as illustrated in these untreated (top) versus treated (bottom) brain images. Image Credit: Harvard Photographic Services

Remember This! … Fibroblast-Neprilysin

In a report that first appeared August 27 on the Web site of the Public Library of Science, experiments centered on new methods to relieve the damaging effect of Alzheimer’s disease are showing great promise.

Simply stated, it is believed that when some humans grow older, the ability to control the build up of protein based plaques in the brain becomes reduced. These proteins create toxic clumps and tangled fibers that ultimately kill cells and interfere with the brains’ ability to recall memories and think (a situation similar to the build up of cholesterol in arteries that reduce the flow of blood).

An enzyme named Neprilysin has shown great promise in breaking down the toxic clumps of fibrous protein in the brains of mice. What has been found through these tests, and may be unique, is the method of the delivery of this enzyme to the effected portions of the brain under the toxic grip of Alzheimer’s protein-fiber goo.

Skin from the patient may actually provide the best method to first create the Neprilysin enzyme and further, through a process termed Fibroblast create a combo that can be implanted back into the patient for the desired result – a freer thinking brain.

This Fibroblast-Neprilsin combo type of tratment process has shown and may prove to have a positive benefit to the treatment of cancers, blood, muscle, and eye diseases, spinal cord injuries, stroke, Parkinson’s and Huntington diseases, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s disease).

This from Harvard University Gazette Online -

Brain implants relieve Alzheimer’s damage
Toxic plaques cleared away

William J. Cromie - Harvard News Office - August 28, 2007

Genetically engineered cells implanted in mice have cleared away toxic plaques associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

The animals were sickened with a human gene that caused them to develop, at an accelerated rate, the disease that robs millions of elderly people of their memories. After receiving the doctored cells, the brain-muddling plaques melted away. If this works in humans, old age could be a much happier time of life.

Alzheimer’s involves a protein called amyloid-beta.
“Delivery of genes that led to production of an enzyme that breaks up amyloid showed robust clearance of plaques in the brains of the mice,” notes Dennis Selkoe, Vincent and Stella Coates Professor of Neurologic Diseases at Harvard Medical School. “These results support and encourage further investigation of gene therapy for treatment of this common and devastating disease in humans.”
The first published report of the experiments, done by Selkoe and other researchers from Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s and McLean hospitals, appeared Aug. 27 on the Web site of the Public Library of Science.

The gene delivery technique employed by the research team has been used in several other trials with animals that model human diseases, including cancers. The procedure involves removing cells from patients, making genetic changes, and then putting back the modified cells, which should treat a disease or disability.
“Several of these potential treatments have advanced to human trials, with encouraging outcomes for patients,” says Matthew Hemming, lead author of the report and a graduate student in Selkoe’s lab.
The Harvard team used skin cells from the animal’s own body to introduce a gene for an amyloid-busting enzyme known as neprilysin. The skin cells, also known as fibroblasts, “do not form tumors or move from the implantation site,” Hemming notes. “They cause no detectable adverse side effects and can easily be taken from a patient’s skin.” In addition, other genes can be added to the fibroblast-neprilysin combo, which will eliminate the implants if something starts to go wrong.
The experiments proved that the technique works, but will it work in humans?

One major obstacle, Selkoe says, is the larger size of a human brain compared to that of a mouse. That difference will require an increase of amyloid-busting activity throughout a much larger space.

One solution might involve implanting the genes and fibroblasts where they have the best access to amyloid-beta, in the spinal fluid for example, instead of trying to inject them into a small target. The amyloid-killing combo might be put into capsules that would secrete neprilysin into the blood circulating in the brain, eliminating the need to hit an exact spot.

This or some other clever maneuver that does not require surgery might eliminate the gooey plaques, but will that improve a person’s memory? And will the change be long-lasting? “Further work is needed to determine if reducing the plaque burden has cognitive benefits over a long period,” notes Hemming, “but there’s a wealth of evidence arguing that it will.”
Reference Here>>

(re-posted at MAXINE)

Monday, August 27, 2007

Toothy Find In Ethiopia Changes Evolutionary Assumption

Digital Renderings Of Gorilla Right Upper Molors - This undated file photo shows Chororapithecus abyssinicus teeth and a female gorilla tooth row. Ten-million year old fossils discovered in Ethiopia, the earliest direct ancestors of modern gorillas ever found, shows that humans and apes probably split six or seven millions years earlier than widely thought, according to landmark study released Wednesday. Image Credit: AFP via PHYSORG

Toothy Find In Ethiopia Changes Evolutionary Assumption

The scientific community, through unearthed fossil evidence, has always assumed that humans evolved from apes. A new fossil may push back the approximate beginning of this split by millions of years.

What actually becomes the most significant piece of information gleaned from this uncovered evidence is that the handful of teeth from the earliest direct ancestors of modern gorillas leave virtually no doubt that both humans and modern apes did indeed originate from Africa. This is the conclusion found in the study that accompanied the find published in “NATURE”.

The scientists leading the team that found the fossils -- Gen Suwa of the University of Tokyo, and Ethiopian paleontologists Berhane Asfaw and Yonas Beyene -- calculated that the human-orangutan split "could easily have been as old as 20 million years." The teeth fragments, found in barren scrubland some 170 kilometres (100 miles) east of Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, almost went unnoticed. Asfaw recalled the chance discovery. "It was our last day of field survey in February 2006, and our sharp-eyed field assistant, Kampiro, found the first ape tooth, a canine," he said. "He picked it up and showed it to me, and I knew that this was something new -- Ethiopia's first fossil great ape." Image Credit: AFP

This from AFP via -

Fossil find pushes human-ape split back millions of years
AFP - Aug 24 08:17 AM US/Eastern

Ten million-year-old fossils discovered in Ethiopia show that humans and apes probably split six or seven million years earlier than widely thought, according to landmark study released Wednesday.
The near total absence to date of traces on the continent of apes from this period had led many scientists to conclude that the shared line from which humans and living great apes emerged had taken a long evolutionary detour through Eurasia.

But the study, published in the British journal Nature, "conclusively demonstrates that the Last Common Ancestor (of both man and ape) was strictly an African phenomenon," commented paleoanthropologist Owen Lovejoy of Kent State University in Ohio.

Lovejoy described the fossils as "a critically important discovery," a view echoed by several other scientists who had read the paper or seen the artifacts.

"This is a major breakthrough in our understanding of the origin of humanity," Yohannes Haile-Selassie, a physical anthropologist at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, told AFP.

The most startling implication of the find, the scientists agree, is that our human progenitors diverged from today's great apes -- including gorillas, orangutans and chimpanzees -- several million years earlier than widely accepted research based on molecular genetics had previously asserted.
"We know nothing about how the human line actually emerged from apes," the authors of the paper noted.

But the new fossils, dubbed "Chororapithecus abyssinicus" by the team of Japanese and Ethiopian paleoanthropologists who found them, place the early ancestors of the modern day gorilla 10 to 10.5 million years in the past, suggesting that the human-ape split occurred before that.

There is broad agreement that chimpanzees were the last of the great apes to split from the evolutionary line leading to man, after gorillas and, even earlier, orangutans.

Conventional scientific wisdom, based on genetic "distances" measured by molecular geneticists, had placed the divergence between chimps and humans some five to six million years ago. Orangutans are thought to have parted company with our ancestors 13 to 14 million years ago.

"If the new discovery is in the gorilla lineage, then this will definitely substantially push back the split time between apes and humans," Halie-Selassie at Kent State told AFP.
They determined that the teeth belonged to gorilla ancestors based on unique shared characteristics of the molars, which had evolved for a diet of fibrous foods such as stems and leaves.

The match is not exact, however, and could prompt some scientists to challenge the findings.

Reference Here>>

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Graphic Searches Expand From The Earth To Include Heavens

Google Earth, Andromeda Galaxy - This tool isn't limited to stars. There are images of galaxies, clusters, stellar winds and more. Image Credit: Businesswire

Graphic Searches Expand From The Earth To Include Heavens

A couple of years ago, the ability to search the surface of the Earth with a graphic window was introduced and became all the rage. One could ask the search tool to take them to a particular location and up would pop a satellite photographic view of that specific place here on the Oblate Spheroid. If the location was a home address or business, the photo even detailed the cars that might have been parked around the area when the photo was taken. Amazing.

This last week, one of the more popular of these search tools, Google Earth, introduced a version that allows one to escape the confines of this little orb and explore the heavens around us. For additional graphic information on a particular object (planet, star, galaxy) this tool utilizes images captured by the Hubble telescope. This, along with search tools offered through other web portals, is a great way to introduce oneself and explore the worlds outside of this world!

Item from Webware Weekley -

A brief guide to the heavens on your PC: Google Earth and more
By Rafe Needleman – August 22, 2007, 2:32 PM PDT

Google just launched a new version of
Google Earth (news, download) from which you gaze up from the surface of the planet, not just down on it. It's a good way to see which stars and planets are over your home, right now. You can also check out a rich database of Hubble Space Telescope images that is overlaid on the celestial map.

The new Google Earth has a lot of additional education and reference material linked to it, pulled in from the Net as needed. The program is a great way to learn about the night sky. It has two big limitations, though: your point of view is limited to Earth (you can't see the stars from other locations) and you have an extremely limited control of time. If you want to see where the planets were on your birthday, for example, you can't.

Getting to Google Sky was a little confusing, but it's actually an icon right in the middle of the page (circled). The first screen shows constellations to make it easier to find what you're looking for. With your mouse you can rotate 360 degrees around the sky and can also zoom in and out with your scroll wheel. Image Credit: Google Earth via CNET

When you find a highlighted star, nebula or galaxy, you can zoom in. The diamond shape indicates more information is available. The Orion Nebula is located in the Orion galaxy--it's the hunter's weapon. Image Credit: Google Earth via CNET

Many stars, galaxies or interstellar phenomenon contain pictures and information--some directly from the Hubble site. Image Credit: Google Earth via CNET

If your curiosity about the universe bumps into Google Earth's edges, I'd recommend also checking out these two applications:

Celestia (download) is a 3D simulation of the galaxy. Its special power is not its imagery (Google's is better, although Celestia does a good job with planets and asteroids in our solar system), but rather that you can zoom in on any object in the program's database and see the galaxy from that perspective. You can also see the position of stars at any point in time and can control the rate of time's passage to see how objects move over the millennia.

Stellarium (download) is a gorgeous planetarium for your computer. Its sky and star visuals are a lot more compelling then either Google's or Celestia's, although Stellarium does not have detailed Hubble overlays. Like Google, it's Earth-bound (you can't move your point of reference), but like Celestia, it gives you good control over time so you can see the heavens wheel about. My favorite feature is that it will also overlay constellation lines from other cultures (Chinese, Inuit, and so on); Google only shows the Western constellations.

There are also Web-based online planetaria. They have good data, but they don't give you the smooth visual controls that the downloadable applications do. See, WikiSky (review), and YourSky. You can control a powerful stargazing telescope yourself via the Web at the pay site Slooh (review). There are also astronomy gadgets covered over on our gadget blog, Crave.

Finally, if the real galaxy doesn't appeal to you, check out the collaborative work of fiction called
Galaxiki. Be advised that it was named one of the "Five stupidest start-ups of the summer" by Valleywag.
Reference Here>>

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

5,000 Year Old Chewing Gum Unearthed

Stone Age "Chewing Gum", Neolithic period, c. 4000-5000 BC – Image Credit: Kierikki Stone Age Centre

5,000 Year Old Chewing Gum Unearthed

Yes, that’s right, 5K year old chewing gum and not a chair or counter underside in sight.

It turns out that Neolithic people (c. 4000-5000 BC) found that by chewing this stuff, cob of Birch tree bark, when they had gum infections … it helped to treat the condition. This find is particularly significant because of well-defined tooth imprints found on the gum. Time for a little very, very cold case CSI, I’d say.

We have only one question here at Oblate Spheroid; Did these people have packs of cigarettes rolled up in the sleeves of their Tee Shirts?

On Friday 13th Sarah also found a beautiful c. four centimetre long worked slate arrow which is from the so-called "Typical Comb Ceramic period" 3500-4000 BC. Image Credit: Kierikki Stone Age Centre

This from the Kierikki Stone Age Centre, Finland

Friday 13th of July was the lucky day at Kierikki Excavation
Notes from the Kierikki Stone Age Centre

Beside the main building of Kierikki Centre on a site called "Kierikkikangas" there has been an excavation from June 25th to 3rd August . There have been five British students working who came via Leonardo da Vinci -exchange program of European Union. Besides them also the general public can take part in this exciting centred on the Neolithic period, c. 4000-5000 BC. The results of the dig have been excellent throughout this year.

Miss Sarah Pickin (pictured) from Derby has been the favourite of fortune. She has found a piece of "Neolithic chewing gum", chewed cob of birch-bark, part of an amber ring and found on Thursday July 12th with help of two diggers from Oulu, Ms. Rumana Hossein and Ms. Maisoun Alsanat.

Image Credit: Kierikki Stone Age Centre

Originally the diameter of it was four centimetres but probably was already broken in the Stone Age. After that someone made a hole in the ring so that it could still be used as jewellery. It was transported from the Baltic coast c. 5500-6000 years ago as payment for seal skins that were produced in the Kierikki area in the Neolithic Period.
Reference Here>>
(ht: SlashDot)

Further investigation reveals that the current population in Finland have the the best dental hygiene in the world. Finland leads the world in overall dental health as they use xylitol as a healthy alternative to sugar.

Xylitol is a natural sugar that comes mainly from corn cobs, corn stalks, … and birch trees!

File this under – “Old Habits Die Hard”

YouTube of a commercial for Lotte chewing gum. Its major property is that it uses xylitol. Notice that the commercial is set in a birch tree forest. The little cartoon character at the end tag of the commercial is supposed to represent a sage and traditional Finnish cultural icon.


By the 1950s, Scandinavian children were found to have fewer cavities than the children in countries still using sugar. Clinical studies show that regularly using oral hygiene products with xylitol can reduce tooth decay by up to 80%. The Spry Dental Defense System is a family of high-quality oral care products manufactured using xylitol.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Something "Lyrid" Is Lurking In The Sky Tonight - UPDATED 8/11/07

The Griffith Observatory - is an icon of Los Angeles, a national leader in public astronomy, a beloved civic gathering place, and one of southern California's most popular attractions. The Observatory is located on the southern slope of Mount Hollywood in Griffith Park, just above the Los Feliz neighborhood. It is 1,134 feet above sea level and is visible from many parts of the Los Angeles basin. Image Credit: Edmund Jenks, Copyright 2006

Something "Lyrid" Is Lurking In The Sky Tonight

Ever stop and wonder why the Earth is really, at once ... so big, and yet, so small?

Tonight and tomorrow we will all have a chance to wonder and realize that this Blue Orb is a special platform on which to observe the real world that is happening around us - the real world that is the sky of which is the community we all belong.

This report from The Griffith Observatory -

The Griffith Observatory Sky Report
Anthony Cook - Astronomical Observer - April 18, 2007

This is the Griffith Observatory Sky Report for the week ending April 25. Here is what’s happening in the skies of Southern California:

The moon returns to the evening sky on Wednesday when it can be found at sunset, midway between the sun’s setting point and the brilliant planet Venus. The moon appears less than 5 degrees to the lower right of Venus on Thursday evening. It reaches first-quarter phase on Monday evening, the 23rd, and on the next night, it passes less than 4 degrees from Saturn.

Saturn, in Leo the Lion, is best placed for viewing–71 degrees high in the west–as soon as darkness falls, and sets in the west northwest at about 3:10 a.m.

Bright tapioca-hued Jupiter rises at about 11p.m., and becomes noticeable in the southeast sky by midnight. The giant planet is highest, 34 degrees above the southern horizon, at 4 a.m., and is slightly west of south at dawn. Jupiter is in the constellation Ophiuchus the Serpent Bearer, between Scorpius the Scorpion and Sagittarius the Archer.

Jupiter can help you to locate the Hubble Space Telescope when it flies south of Los Angeles this week. The HST will emerge from the Earth’s shadow in the south-southeast–to the left of Jupiter and slightly higher than the planet–each morning from Monday the 23rd to Thursday the 26th. It appears at 4:19 a.m. on Monday morning, then descends towards the east over the next three minutes, where the red planet Mars is rising. The HST appears about 90 seconds earlier each successive morning, following a similar track each time. Look starting at 4:18 a.m. on the 24th, 4:17 a.m. on the 25th, and 4:15 a.m. on the 26th.

The Griffth Observatory (at night) - The large new Richard and Lois Gunther Depths of Space exhibit gallery is activated by the recent transformation of cosmic perspective that began when people first ventured into space. No longer is observation and understanding of the sky bonded to the ground and framed by the horizon. The Gunther Depths of Space is filled with exhibits that are as monumental and unique as the ideas they illustrate: The Planets, Our Earth, Our Solar System,Other Worlds, Other Stars, Milky Way Galaxy, Iconic Universe, A Familiar Star Pattern, Our Address, The Big Picture, The Big Picture-Related Exhibits (Field Guides, Depth of Space, Einstein) - Image Credit: Edmund Jenks, Copyright 2006

The Lyrid meteor shower is predicted to be at its best between 11 p.m. on Saturday night and until dawn starts on Sunday morning April 22, at about 5 a.m. Up to 18 meteors per hour can be seen from a dark wilderness location, far from urban light pollution. The radiant point, from which the meteors seem to stream, is actually in the constellation Hercules the Hero, but is close to the bright star Vega in Lyra, the Lyre.

Free public viewing is available through Griffith Observatory’s telescopes. For information on making a reservation to visit, see our website,, or call (213) 473-0800. The next public star party, held by members of the Los Angeles Astronomical Society and the Los Angeles Sidewalk Astronomers, will be held on the Observatory’s front lawn on Saturday, April 21.

And that’s this week’s Sky Report.
Reference Here>>

This description of the Lyrid Meteor Shower from Sky Tonight.Com -

April's Lyrid Meteor Shower
by Roger W. Sinnott

The Lyrid meteor shower has been observed for more than 2,000 years; Chinese records say "stars fell like rain" during the shower of 687 BC. But in recent times the Lyrids have generally been weak. They have a brief maximum that lasts for less than a day, and even then only 10 to 20 Lyrids per hour may appear.

But there have been some remarkable exceptions. In 1982 the rate unexpectedly reached 90 for a single hour, and 180 to 300 for a few minutes. A brief outburst of 100 per hour was also seen in 1922. And on April 20, 1803, residents of Richmond, Virginia, upon being rousted out of bed by a fire bell, were startled to see great numbers of meteors in all parts of the sky. "This unpredictability always makes the Lyrids a shower to watch, since we cannot say when the next unusual return may occur," note Alistair McBeath and Rainer Arlt of the International Meteor Organization.

Use our interactive sky chart to see the appearance of the heavens at 2:00 a.m., during the peak morning of the Lyrids. The radiant point of this shower lies between the bright summer star Vega and the keystone pattern of the constellation Hercules. The chart is set at 40° north latitude for central North America. Click on the "change" button to alter either the date and time or viewing location displayed by the chart. Generally, there will be more meteors than usual visible for a few days on either side of the peak of a meteor shower.

Reference Here>>

On August 12, 1993, J. F. Funderburg photographed this bright Perseid streaking past the Andromeda Galaxy (fuzzy trail just above the meteor's center). Image Credit: J.F. Funderburg via

And this from tip from EarthSky.Org –

Who Should Watch The Lyrid Meteor Shower?

You should! If you’re a gambler.

That’s because all meteor showers are just that . . . a gamble. No one can tell you precisely how many meteors you’ll see from any given shower.

We can tell you this. The Lyrid meteor shower will peak this weekend. The best time to watch will be Sunday before dawn, and then again on Monday before dawn.

And we can say that the moon – bane of meteor watchers for its tendency to wash out all but the brightest meteors – will be approaching the first quarter phase during the shower’s peak. That means it’ll set in the middle of the night, leaving the hours before dawn dark for watching meteors. That’s a good thing.

The Lyrid meteor shower is usually more of a trickle, with a typical rate of 10 or 15 meteors per hour. Still, in 1982, the Lyrids ramped up to over 100 meteors per hour for a few minutes. See what we mean? A gamble.

If you want to watch the Lyrids, the same rules apply as for other meteor showers. Most important rule: get away from city lights. Find an open area in a country location. Lie back. Relax. Look up in a casual way, with your eyes roving over all parts of the sky. When you spot one, it’s fun to alert your companions by yelling out “meteor!” It’s fun to count how many you see in an hour.

Most meteor showers are best after midnight, so the later you can stay out the better. Or get up in the wee hours and do your meteor-watching before dawn.

Lyrid meteors appear to radiate from the constellation Lyra the Harp. But you don’t need to identify Lyra to see the meteors. In fact, you’ll see more meteors if you let your eyes wander around the sky. The meteors are streaking away from Lyra, but they tend to be most visible when they’re some distance from the constellation.
The constellation Lyra – the radiant point for the Lyrid meteor shower – is now overhead before dawn. So, if you’re out at that time, the meteors will be streaking down from the top of the sky.

Lyra itself is pretty easy to pick out. It’s tiny and has a distinctive shape. The brightest star seen overhead in the hour before dawn is Lyra’s brightest star, Vega. You’ll easily pick out a tiny quadrilateral of stars near Vega. This little pattern of stars is the rest of the constellation Lyra.

The Lyrids tend to be bright and leisurely in motion. They occur when Earth swings through a thin trail of comet debris floating in space. The tiny icy particles burn up in our atmosphere, creating flashes or streaks.

So imagine yourself under a dark country sky. You’re surrounded by stars. Every so often, you see a streak across the sky: a Lyrid meteor. It is beautiful.
And isn’t that the best thing about a gamble? The payoff!
Reference Here>>

VIDEO: A Visit To Griffith Observatory (Los Angeles)

UPDATE – The Mid-Summer Perseid Is In Effect - 8/11/07

Scientists expect spectacular Perseid meteor shower
By DAVID OLSON - The Press-Enterprise - 04:07 PM PDT on Friday, August 10, 2007

The Perseid shower's peak this year will be late Sunday night and before dawn Monday.
The Perseid shower is a favorite because the streaks of light tend to be especially bright and sometimes have hues of color, Clarke said.

In addition, said Ralph Megna, chairman of the Riverside Astronomical Society, the Perseids are unusually reliable. Viewers can typically see 60 to 80 meteors an hour during the pinnacle, which this year will be after midnight Monday. A smaller number of meteors will be visible tonight and Monday night.

The meteors will be most visible far away from city lights. Megna will view the meteor shower at the society's observatory in Landers, in the remote San Bernardino County desert.

But they also can be seen -- albeit more faintly -- in suburban backyards. The best way to see them is with the naked eye, because they move too quickly to be easily seen through telescopes, said Doreen Wiggins, of the Big Bear Valley Astronomical Society, which is gathering at Erwin Lake near Big Bear Lake to view the showers.

"You just have to lay out and look up at the sky," she said.

The debris from the Perseid meteor shower was once part of Comet Swift-Tuttle. Comets are collections of rock, dust and ice that were created during the formation of the solar system more than 4 ½ billion years ago.
Every August, Earth goes toward the trail of particles that follows the same general path as Comet Swift-Tuttle. The debris -- primarily dust the size of a grain of sand -- travels about 132,000 miles per hour, so when it disintegrates upon impact with Earth's atmosphere, the heat and energy that are created produce light seen miles below on Earth, he said. The light is typically 50 to 100 miles above ground.

The most meteors will occur in the hours before dawn on Monday because that is when the densest part of the debris stream will be hitting Earth's atmosphere, Benner said.
Reference Here>>


The peak of the Perseid meteor shower is late Sunday night 8/12/07 and, especially, after midnight Monday 8/13/07.

For the best viewing:

Go where the SKY IS DARKEST. You'll see some meteors in cities, but not as many as in areas away from bright lights.

AFTER 9 P.M. SUNDAY, look for the meteors in the NORTHEAST SKY. The meteors will fly out of the constellation Perseus. There will be fewer meteors early in the night, but they will be among the most beautiful. They approach from the horizon and skim through the sky like stones skipping the surface of a pond.

In the hours BEFORE DAWN MONDAY, there could be more than ONE METEOR A MINUTE.

It is best to VIEW the meteors WITH THE NAKED EYE. Telescopes and binoculars would make it more difficult, because the meteors move so quickly.

Bring a blanket or lawn chair so you can LIE DOWN. Otherwise, your neck will get tired from looking up at the sky.

SOURCE: National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

"i-CAUGHT" - From Target, To Food, To Family Member

i-CAUGHT Logo - Image Credit: ABC News

"i-CAUGHT" - From Target, To Food, To Family Member

Life here on the Oblate Spheroid can be pretty tenuous at best, especially if you happen to be an animal in Africa.

Last night, a new television show entitled “i-CAUGHT” aired that features video that is posted on the internet (primarily YouTube) for many purposes. For some, people post to share, others post in an effort to discover more information, and most people post video because they now can.

Battle At Kruger - The first YouTube video reported on at i-CAUGHT … Amateur video captures a riveting battle among lions, crocodiles and buffalo in Africa.

ABC News, the division who manages the effort to make “i-Caught” a successful television endeavor has created a web portal of its own through which people can participate in the development of the content shown on the program.

i-Produce, a button feature on the Home page, allows anyone to help “produce” the upcoming airing of the show by voting for the video one believes is the best offered. The video receiving the most votes will be included in the next week’s airing thus giving the show an interactive quality.

This from ABC News’ i-CAUGHT web portal –

What is i-CAUGHT?

Well - we all know there's a video revolution swirling around us all - 24/7. Ask yourself... how many times were you caught on surveillance video today? Did you - like more than 100,000 other people - upload a video onto the internet? Did you go online like millions of others and watch a video?

We're ALL a part of this new video revolution.

But it's more than just entertainment. Every one of these videos has a story behind it. Who made it? What was going on behind the scenes? What came after it? And how much can we really believe what we see?

An awful lot of it is also news. The politician caught on an open mic. The policeman caught doing the heroic - or the opposite. The patrol on the streets of Baghdad. Or the moment when Mother Nature wreaks havoc on the ususpecting. We're watching - literally - as every single person with a video camera can gather news for all the rest of us.

We call this new television and internet experience i-CAUGHT. Because that's how so many people feel these days. Everywhere you look - cameras - catching everything: breaking news... making headlines... turning unknowns into celebrities... turning others into laughing stocks...

And for all the world to see - in an instant. It's video at the speed of life.

Every week, i-CAUGHT brings you the real stories - reporting on the real people - behind the videos that millions of us watch and share everyday.
Reference Here>>

Truth is, NowPublic and i-CAUGHT would make a good pairing because video is more than just images ... video is surrounded by and contains a story that has a beginning, middle and an end ... just as it is revealed in "Battle At Kruger" - From Target, To Food, To Family Member!