Monthly Archives: April 2008

One More Step Toward Positive Personal Identification – US Begins Issuing Electronic Passports

The United States Department of State has begun issuing passports that contain an RFID chip that carries personal information in digital form. Other countries have done the same.  The  implementation of this technology is accompanied by a new Visa Waiver Program that bypasses the visa application process. Below is the official description of the e-passport from the State Department website.  read the rest  of the story here.  -t.h.g.

What is an Electronic Passport?

An Electronic Passport is the same as a traditional passport with the addition of a small integrated circuit (or “chip”) embedded in the back cover.  The chip stores:

  • The same data visually displayed on the data page of the passport;
  • A biometric identifier in the form of a digital image of the passport photograph, which will facilitate the use of face recognition technology at ports-of-entry;
  • The unique chip identification number; and
  • A digital signature to protect the stored data from alteration.

You’ll Have Fun With This Two Minute Exercise

This came to me by way of James Taris. James is a writer, teacher and actor, an Australian of Greek descent, living in China.

Joke Of The Month: Learn Chinese in 5 Minutes

(You MUST read these aloud)

Eng: That’s not right.
Chi: Sum Ting Wong.

Eng: Are you harboring a fugitive?
Chi: Hu yu hai ding?

Eng: See me ASAP.
Chi: Kum hia nao.

Eng: Small horse.
Chi: Tai ni po ni.

Eng: Did you go to the beach?
Chi: Wai yu so tan?

Eng: I think you need a facelift.
Chi: Chin tu fat.

Eng: It’s very dark in here.
Chi: Wai so dim?

Eng: I thought you were on a diet?
Chi: Wai yu mun ching?

Eng: This is a tow away zone.
Chi: No pah king.

Eng: Our meeting is scheduled for next week.
Chi: Wai yu kum nao?

Eng: Staying out of sight.
Chi: Lei ying lo.

Eng: He’s cleaning his automobile.
Chi: Wa shing ka.

Eng: Your body odour is offensive.
Chi: Yu stin ki pu.

Comedian Scott Kalechstein on YouTube

Now, to keep things light, take five to see and hear comedian Scott Kalechstein on YouTube.

New Scientist Reports That “Cheap, ‘safe’ Drug Kills Most Cancers”

An article that appeared in the 20 January 2007 issue of New Scientist describes “a cheap and simple drug that kills almost all cancers by switching off their “immortality”. The drug, dichloroacetate (DCA), has already been used for years to treat rare metabolic disorders and so is known to be relatively safe. It also has no patent, meaning it could be manufactured for a fraction of the cost of newly developed drugs.” Research on this is ongoing at the University of Alberta (Canada).

Michel Bauwens — Peer-to-Peer Alternatives

Here is an excellent visionary presentation by Michel Bauwens about the emerging phenomena of networks, peer production, social design and innovation, and peer-to-peer (P2P) alternatives.

Middle-class Day Labor?

You may take this as you will, but I found it amusing, and maybe a bit too prophetic. Have a look. — t.h.g.