Making Unique Observations in a Very Cluttered World

Monday, 22 June 2015

Study links erectile dysfunction drugs that include Viagra has been linked to a risk of the skin cancer melanoma -

Study links erectile dysfunction drugs that include Viagra has been linked to a risk of the skin cancer melanoma - 

While the research in the Journal of the American Medical Association stops short of proving that the drugs cause melanoma, researchers said their findings warrant a closer look at medications known as PDE5 (phosphodiesterase type 5) inhibitors.

They include sildenafil, vardenafil and tadalafil,which go by brand names such as Viagra, Levitra, Cialis and others.

Using Swedish medical records spanning 2006 to 2012, researchers found about 4,000 cases of melanoma. Of those patients, 11 percent had filled at least one prescription for a PDE5 inhibitor to treat erectile dysfunction.

When comparing these men to a control group of cancer-free men selected randomly from the same registry and matched by age, researchers found the risk of melanoma was 21 percent higher in men who took the erectile dysfunction drugs.

However, the most pronounced risk was seen in men who had filled a single prescription (32 percent higher).

The risk of melanoma in men who filled multiple prescriptions was 14 percent, which was not statistically significant, according to the study led by doctor Stacy Loeb of New York University.

Researchers were also puzzled by the finding that men taking ED drugs were more likely to be diagnosed with low-grade melanoma, not advanced or high risk cancers.

Study authors stressed that the risk of melanoma they found among erectile dysfunction drug takers was modest, and would translate to about seven additional cases of cancer per 100,000 men taking PDE5 inhibitors.

"The observed association may reflect confounding [other factors that can influence outcomes] by lifestyle factors associated with both PDE5 inhibitor use and low-stage melanoma," concluded the study.

According to Chris Chapple, Secretary General of the European Association of Urology, the findings are an "interesting observation" but more research is needed.

"This paper reports a previously unreported potential association," said Chapple, who was not involved in the study.

"It's an interesting observation, but it should not be a trigger for any change in current clinical practice relating to the use of drugs for the treatment of erectile dysfunction such as Viagra and related compounds."


Churches are using Facial Recognition software to spy on members -

Churches are using Facial Recognition software to spy on members -  

Soon every churchgoer will be identified by facial recognition software! You read that right, churches will soon be using facial recognition software to identify you and your family.

The company website brags: "First of its kind, Churchix provides you with accurate data on members attendance in your events and services. The software also allows you to sort and manage your videos and photos."

“Churchix was originally developed by us for a chain of international churches, which wanted to follow up with membership attendance at its events. Today it’s being used at a number of other churches in the US and in Indonesia” Moshe Greenshpan, the company’s CEO said.

“I can tell you in general that churches also don’t like to be described as privacy invaders,” Greenshpan told me. “Most of them would like to keep this confidential. We try to encourage churches to make Churchix more visible, so it will become like a checkpoint for registration. Of course, so far we haven’t had great success in doing that.” 

What he's really saying is: He hopes churchgoers will accept surveillance cameras in churches, synagogues and mosques, while the government (DHS) monitors your every movement.

Churchix photo recognition video:

"Churchix is a face recognition event attendance desktop application. Churchix identifies event attending members in videos and photos. All you need to do is enrol high quality photos of your members into the software data base, then connect a live video USB camera or upload recorded videos or photos – and Churchix will identify your members."

"Churchix is designed for Church administrators and event managers who want to save the pain of manually tracking their members attendance to their events."

"Churchix is a division of Skakash LLC, a global face recognition vendor which develops and markets."

The company’s CEO Moshe Greenshpan told Churchm.ag that they never set out to sell the software to churches until requests started coming in.

“Within a short period of time we've been approached by 10 different churches from all over the world, all asking for the same thing – give us a face recognition software that can identify members attending our events,” he explained.

"This is a clear example of completely over-the-top use of technology. Churches have managed to note who is in their congregation for hundreds of years without resorting to highly intrusive means," says Emma Carr, director of Big Brother Watch.

Moshe Greenshpan is the founder and CEO of Skakash,(Churchix) which is an Israeli company. Skakash suggests more secular locations where they could deploy its facial recognition system. Skakash wants to use its surveillance software at airports, border areas, and casinos.

Skakash suggests there are three classes of people churches, corporations and the government might want to track: Blacklisted Individuals, Employees and VIPs.

Face-Six promises to ID faces in photos with machine learning:

“Face-Six integrates well-known image processing algorithms with innovative algorithms from the world of artificial intelligence.”

“We’re talking about a machine learning algorithm, which is created by the computer and not by an engineer. The computer learns to develop the algorithm from a wide sample of pictures of faces and their known identification. That way, the computer learns the connections from every observation and produces a smart algorithm.”

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