Making Unique Observations in a Very Cluttered World

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

US Feds Consider Vehicle Location Tracking in all New Cars -

US Feds Consider Vehicle Location Tracking in all New Cars - 

In a few weeks, federal officials may require new vehicles to have trackable GPS “safety” devices which could be hacked to cause automobile accidents and may even usher in mileage taxes.
With the V2V device, the GPS location for all new cars could be recorded. Credit: Minesweeper via Wiki
With the V2V device, the GPS location for all new cars could be recorded. Credit: Minesweeper via Wiki
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is spending the next couple of weeks mulling over its decision to install vehicle-to-vehicle communications – known as V2V for short – into new vehicles which would allow them to “talk” to each other through GPS data under the guise of “accident prevention,” according to ABC News.
However, one official involved with the government study of the devices admitted that hackers could abuse the system to create mass havoc on the road.
“Who has access and how do you secure the data?” David Wise of the Government Accountability Office asked.
He even said that the V2V would rely on GPS data that can be used to easily track a vehicle – and thus the occupants inside.
“Privacy is a real challenge,” Wise said.
This is refreshing honesty from a government official.
The fact that the V2V system could be hacked to cause high-speed pile-ups exposes the political lie that these devices were designed to prevent accidents. In fact, bureaucrats want the V2V installed in vehicles in order to track Americans like animals in another sick extension of the domestic spy grid pioneered by the NSA.
With vehicle tracking, big government politicians could also accomplish their goal of taxing drivers by every mile driven.
Lawmakers could even use this sort of technology to pass laws that allow local governments to mail drivers tickets for “recorded traffic violations” as they already do with red light cameras.
And to really stick it into drivers even further, the costs for the GPS technology will be tacked onto the price of new cars – forcing Americans to pay for their own enslavement.

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Mid-lifers who want to be active in their 70s, 80s should be hitting the gym now -

Mid-lifers who want to be active in their 70s, 80s should be hitting the gym now - 

No one likes to think about getting old and we generally don't do much to prepare for it. But the truth of the matter is that if you are lucky enough to live into your 70s, 80s and beyond, your fitness level is going to decline.

Some of it comes down to unstoppable biology. But how much and how fast you lose muscle, bone, flexibility and aerobic capacity is also influenced by your individual fitness level going into older age.

So if you want to be sprightly in your 70s, you need to be working out in your 40s, 50s and 60s, experts say.

Put another way: If you don't pay into your fitness bank in middle age, you won't have much to draw on later. And while you may not mind being too out of shape to go for a run when you are 55, you probably will care if you can't pull yourself out of a bathtub at 75.

"I think you are on a slippery slope. Or another analogy would be you're getting closer to the edge of the cliff," says Dr. Paul Oh, medical director of the cardiovascular prevention and rehabilitation program at Toronto Rehab, a hospital in the University Health Network.

"We need to be thinking about prevention all along, but particularly as we hit our middle years."

In your teens, 20s and 30s, for most people working out is about looking and feeling good, managing stress and keeping weight in check. But later in life, maintaining muscle is critical for independent and active living. In other words, we need to do it to be able to perform myriad functions we all take for granted — until we can no longer do them with ease.

You need strong leg muscles for walking, climbing stairs and getting up from the sofa. You need strong core muscles to protect your back. And you need upper body strength to carry groceries, push yourself up out of bed, open a jar or pick up a grandchild.

But adults begin to lose muscle mass as early as age 40, "so it's important to try to defend it through our adult years," says Oh.

In the U.S., the American Heart Association and the Centers for Disease Control recommend adults do weight training — with good reason, says Kent Adams, director of the exercise physiology laboratory at California State University Monterey Bay.

"For the boomers, critical to successful aging is strength training, resistance training,'' he says, adding that even people who exercise regularly but who focus exclusively on aerobic workouts should broaden their routines.

"Running alone is not suitable for maintaining muscle mass," Kent says. "From a public health perspective, we would do a lot of good if people would lift weights two or three days a week."

"We don't need to become Arnold Schwarzenegger.... But we do need to challenge ourselves and work harder."

Elaine Cress agrees.

"For a long time, the emphasis was all on heart disease and cardiovascular fitness. But people are really realizing the critical importance of having strength training for precisely this," says Cress, a former professor of kinesiology and gerontology at the University of Georgia who now lives in Bellingham, Wash.

Cress says performing day-to-day activities will not give you the fitness reserves you will need for later in life.

"You need structured exercise to keep the muscle capacity above what you need in your everyday life. Gardening's not enough."

Experts suggest a mix of types of exercise, aimed at maintain strength and bone density, aerobic capacity and flexibility.

"Stiffness is a factor as you get older," says Dr. Cy Frank, an orthopedic surgeon with the Alberta Bone and Joint Health Institute in Calgary. "So you have to do more stretching as you get older, because physiologically your tissues are tightening up.''

Cress suggests finding a reputable yoga or Pilates program, or other types of stretching classes to help you learn how to stretch properly.

For those who don't have access to or don't feel comfortable working out at a gym, brisk walking is a good option for an aerobic workout, Oh says.

He suggests a person in their 60s who walks at a pace of about 6.4 kilometres per hour would accrue real health benefits. He recommends 30 minutes of that five times a week. The aim is to exert yourself enough to be a little bit out of breath, Oh says.

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Sleep Deprivation Could Damage Brain Tissue -

Sleep Deprivation Could Damage Brain Tissue - 

New research published in the journal SLEEP suggests that even one night of sleep deprivation could result in a loss of brain tissue.
Researchers from Uppsala University in Sweden found that in young, sleep-deprived men, there are higher blood concentrations of the molecules NSE and S-100B. These two molecules are typically found in the brain, so finding high blood concentrations of the molecules after sleep loss "may indicate that a lack of snoozing might be conducive to a loss of brain tissue," Uppsala University wrote in a statement.
For the study, the researchers tested 15 healthy, normal-weight men in their early 20s.
Prior to the study the men were interviewed to confirm that they kept typical sleep patterns in their regular routine, such as getting around eight hours of sleep per night and going to bed by 11:30 p.m. on a work night and waking up no later than 7:30 a.m. on a working day.
In one condition of the experiment, the men were were deprived of sleep for one night. The following morning the researchers examined their blood. In another condition, the men were allowed to sleep approximately eight hours before the blood test.
"We observed that a night of total sleep loss was followed by increased blood concentrations of NSE and S-100B. These brain molecules typically rise in blood under conditions of brain damage. Thus, our results indicate that a lack of sleep may promote neurodegenerative processes," said Christian Benedict, the leader of the study.
Benedict is a sleep researcher at Uppsala University's Department of Neuroscience.
"In conclusion, the findings of our trial indicate that a good night's sleep may be critical for maintaining brain health," Benedict said.

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S-S-S-SCARY - Woman Finds Python In Her S-s-s-s-sofa -

S-S-S-SCARY - Woman Finds Python In Her S-s-s-s-sofa - 

python in couch

Now here's a story guaranteed to make you squirm.

A woman in Michigan recently got the surprise of her life when she discovered a large reptile coiled in the folds of her couch.

According to ABC News, Grand Rapids resident Holly Wright made the shocking find over the weekend, when she spotted a large snake slithering around in a secondhand couch she had picked up.

"I picked this couch up off the street and it's been in my bedroom for a couple months, and today we found a python inside the couch," Holly Wright said in a video obtained by ABC News' Grand Rapids affiliate WZZM-TV.

Wright said she had cleaned the couch when she brought it home and never noticed the stowaway snake. She believes the reptile's appetite is what prompted it to come out of hiding.

"It didn't really react or hiss ... It was quite cold in the room, there was no food for the snake and I think it came out of the couch because it was dying," she said.

Wright may be right, as the python did die before she was able to get help for it.

"It's been really sad actually to realize all this time I was in proximity to that animal [and it] was probably suffering," she told WZZM.

The snake received a proper burial and the couch got kicked back to the curb, along with a written warning — "Do Not Pick Up."

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