The 1997 Ottawa Treaty (or the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction) bans the use of anti-personnel land mines.
Thirty-nine states have yet to sign.
- Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of
- Korea, Republic of
- Lao PDR
- Marshall Islands
- Russian Federation
- Saudi Arabia
- Sri Lanka
- United Arab Emirates
- United States
Richard Just, The New Republic, Introducing ‘The Study’.
Just describes TNR’s hesitation about typical aggregation strategies but the necessity of implementing the practice in general. We think their idea is great and look forward to following as they proceed.
Interesting mash-up of scholarly analysis and news. // @amzam
As an academic, I heartily endorse this idea.
This is kind of exciting.
GroupMe won SXSW’s Breakout Digital Trend award this year.
From The Economist:
Group messaging is simple. One texter sets up the group, online or with a smartphone, and invites others. The group gets its own phone number, and a text sent to that number goes to everyone in the group. Even people with dumbphones can take part. That makes it work for those stragglers who still do not have e-mail on their mobiles (although some of GroupMe’s competitors work only on iPhones and Android phones).
This is a handy variant of social networking. Sites such as Facebook and Twitter are essentially public (though users can restrict who sees their messages); indeed, they involve an element of performance. Group messaging represents a step back from broadcasting. It preserves some measure of intimacy and exclusivity. Beluga, for example, asks users to sort their contacts into “pods”, each serving as a distribution list.
It all sounds useful, but how is it going to make money? GroupMe, which raised $10.6m in January, is mulling advertisements tailored to groups. But users may not welcome a spambot suddenly weighing in on their dinner plans. Etiquette questions will also arise among friends. Group texting is logical when membership has already been delineated—for the team-mates on a project, for example. Among friends, there will surely be tiffs over who is in, and out, of which group. Despite such worries, group messaging looks destined to be old hat by the time next year’s SXSW comes around.
I cannot see myself using this ever.
Victoria Gill, BBC News:
Old World monkeys have better numerical skills than previously thought, researchers have discovered.
In a basic numeracy test, long-tailed macaques were able to work out which of two plates contained more raisins.
Strangely, they only excelled in this test if they were not allowed to eat the raisins they were shown.
The scientists report in the journal Nature Communications that the animals have the ability to understand the concept of relative quantities.
The team of researchers from the German Primate Center in Goettingen initially tested the macaques by showing them two plates containing different numbers of raisins. When the animals spontaneously pointed to one of the plates, they were fed the raisins.
But in this test, the monkeys often got it wrong - choosing the smaller amount.
Lead researcher Vanessa Schmitt said that this was because, rather than thinking about quantities, the animals were thinking about how much they wanted to eat the raisins.
“This impulsiveness impaired their judgement,” Ms Schmitt told BBC News.
“But when we repeated the test, this time showing them two plates of inedible objects - pebbles - they did much better.”
To find out if the monkeys really could judge quantities, the researchers tried another experiment.
“We wanted to know if they could simultaneously maintain two mental representations of the food items, first as choice, and second as food reward,” said Ms Schmitt.
In this third slightly more confusing experiment, the monkeys were shown plates of raisins, but their reward for pointing to a plate was to be fed other raisins that were hidden underneath.
“They perform as well in this task as they do when choosing the pebbles,” said Ms Schmitt.
“This seems to show that they see the raisins as signifiers - representations of the food rewards they’re going to receive.”
Can you fine people recommend me some progressive tumblogs? Besides commentary on the news of the day, I’m interested in:
- global politics
- Canadian politics
- the intersection of technology and politics
- political theory
- anti-oppression activism
- intercultural theory
- literary and cultural criticism (especially ~lowbrow stuff like comics, cartoons, pop music, advertising, kidlit, genre fiction)
- education (and the philosophy thereof)
- community development
- peace theory and activism
- war and security studies
I know it’s a long list, but seriously. Must have moar content. Any recs?
Let’s boldly speak about the possibility of living in a country where bankers don’t make out like bandits while people lose their homes; where prisons aren’t seen as a “growth industry” and healthcare is a right instead of a privilege.
Let’s boldly say that ordinary people have the capacity for extraordinary deeds and can run society far more effectively than those who have been looting their pensions and destroying their jobs.
Let’s boldly proclaim that teachers are the best people to run schools, that nurses and doctors are the best people to run hospitals and that we can wield the remarkable tools of capital for human need instead of corporate greed. As Jack London wrote, we can “Take these mighty machines and make them ours.”
Let’s reintroduce a new generation to the dynamic hidden history of radical change from below. Socialism has been associated with top-down, smothering bureaucracies, but there is a different tradition that threads through the defining struggles of the last century: the battles for the eight-hour workday, women’s rights, desegregation, LGBT rights and global justice.
The fact that Stalinism and McCarthyism wrecked the Communist Party in this country should not blind us to the fact that it built an organization of 80,000 activists by 1938, without which there would have been no 1934 San Francisco general strike, no UAW, no CIO. The American left’s fear of creating its own political party, built on radical principles, remains an obstacle that we must find a way to overcome.
There is no question this will take work. We are talking about reclaiming a proud history of struggle from below while rejecting the part of that history that aligned itself with dictatorial change from on high. But if our ideas are going to have any kind of currency, then we will need more unions, more community groups and more people joined arm in arm that openly stand in the best of the socialist tradition. We will need to be out and proud in the battles to come.” —David Zirin, Socialists, Out And Proud.
Ha ha ha, I love this.
Fyi: Anarky is an anti-authoritarian super-person. Barbara Gordon is Barbara Gordon.
Oh narcissism. So what do you think?
Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Cal.) in an email to MoJo’s Kate Sheppard. After attempting to strip all funding from Planned Parenthood (citing, among other things, fiscal discipline), some House Republicans want to pour federal dollars into “crisis pregnancy centers,” which tell women that abortion can cause breast cancer and suicidal tendencies.
To recap: Taxpayer funding for an organization that provides accurate information and valuable resources to women: bad! Taxpayer funding for organizations that provide false and misleading information, to advance an often undisclosed religious agenda, with little regard for actual health issues involved: good!
*people with uteri and/or women
I really should have listened to your trigger warning. I am beyond disturbed.
I’m sorry bb.
The story as a whole should come with ALL THE TRIGGER WARNINGS. The full Rolling Stone piece (The Kill Team) is without graphic images, but let’s face it—it’s difficult, painful, and triggering reading regardless.
Gay men remain banned for life from donating blood, the government said Wednesday, leaving in place — for now — a 1983 prohibition meant to prevent the spread of HIV through transfusions.
The Food and Drug Administration reiterated its long-standing policy on its Web site Wednesday, more than a year after the Red Cross and two other blood groups criticized the policy as “medically and scientifically unwarranted.”” —MSNBC
I hope you enjoyed the bio microscopy picspam. And if you didn’t enjoy it, my apologies—hope you won’t mind this Sertoli-cell-only syndrome (a form of male sterility) slide! Yes, this is my solution to boring my audience. MORE OF THE SAME.
Next weekend is all about ROBOTS ROBOTS ROBOTS. The stranger, the better.
PS. Would you guys kill me if I started doing weekly contemporary art spams?
A couple of people asked if I work in or study science. If you follow me on Twitter, you already know the answer because I cannot shut up about my homework. (Everyone needs a character flaw). But no, I’m a liberal arts student. My undergrad is in lit/political science. Next fall I’ll (most likely) be doing community development and getting my TESOL certification. The dream is a masters in political theory, somewhere down the road. As for work, I tutor and work in retail (excitement!).
At one point, I’d planned to study biology, but the pull of Dostoevsky and Ranciere was too strong! Now I’m just a weekend science fangirl. THE UNIVERSE IS AMAZING, OK!?
Enough about me. Back to microbiology weekend!
Antonie Philips van Leeuwenhoek: The father of microbiology.
He is best known for his work on the improvement of the microscope and for his contributions towards the establishment of microbiology. Using his handcrafted microscopes he was the first to observe and describe single celled organisms, which he originally referred to as animalcules, and which we now refer to as microorganisms. He was also the first to record microscopic observations of muscle fibers, bacteria, spermatozoa and blood flow in capillaries (small blood vessels). Van Leeuwenhoek did not author any books, although he did write many letters.
— Wikipedia (yeah, I know but it’s accurate and accessible)
The really cool part? The dates of his discoveries:
- the infusoria (protists in modern zoological classification), in 1674
- the bacteria, (e.g. large Selenomonads from the human mouth), in 1676
- the spermatozoa in 1677. Van Leeuwenhoek had troubles with Dutch theologists about his practice.
- the banded pattern of muscular fibers, in 1682