Tuesday, April 29, 2008

PCR Song

Bio-Rad Laboratories, my employer, produced a video to launch a new instrument back in January. Check out this moving video only a molecular biologist could love.

Kary Mullis, awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1993, invented the basic method of performing polymerase chain reaction (PCR). PCR amplifies DNA without the need for living organism. The technique is used for cloning genes, DNA finger printing, paternity testing, et cetera.

There is even a "making of" video.

How do you say that in Irish Gaelic?

There is a lovely plaque that has a Gaelic phrase on it. The sentiment is "There's No Place Like Home", although the litteral translation means "There's no fire like your own fire"...

Nil Aon Tintéan Mar Do Tintéan Fein

Here is a 17 page booklet that will help you figure out how to pronounce the and many other quaint phrases.

Learn Irish vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation with TeachMe! Irish software. If you have used this or have any recommendation please leave a comment.


Friday, April 25, 2008

Honda Civic Hybrid 2008

My jury duty on Monday consisted of being available in the afternoon for selection in the shaken baby case. When they said "not today, check back this evening" I took the opportunity to do down and buy a new car.

This is a picture of my 2008 Civic Hybrid in galaxy gray metallic with ivory interior (no elephants were harmed in the manufacture of the interior.)

Next on my todo list is to put on the "I'd rather be doing Danzan Ryu Jujitsu" licence plate frame. I also need to make the decision on the vanity plate and place the order.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

“Crap, that’s history, dude!”

Danica Patrick won her first IndyCar race in Japan.
“I looked like a chick, like a baby woman!” Patrick, 26, laughed in a phone interview with USA TODAY after returning to the United States.

She won’t apologize for the tears.

“I didn’t expect to get emotional, but that’s what was lying underneath and how much blood, sweat, and tears has gone into getting that first win out of the way,” she said. “I was embarrassed with all the photographers there and took the helmet off to cover my face. Then I said, ‘Screw it, this is how I feel, and this is what sports are all about.’

“Crap, that’s history, dude!”

Danica Patrick gives self, IRL a big boost with historic win

Friday, April 18, 2008

How to save your skin

From Bodhran@yahoogroups.com:

Hi Ceallaigh,

I can't account for the strange localized loose spot in the middle of the drum except to suppose that before the lanolin was put on, that part was already the most supple from natural grease from your hand and the lanolin just pushed it over the edge.

However, whatever the cause I suggest you put some warm water in your bath and immerse your drum head in it for an hour or two, agitating the surface of the skin occasionally to get rid of any treatment that might have over conditioned it. You must then remove it, towel it dry and allow it to dry naturally (not over a radiator). It may take a few days to dry completely and you will probably find that it is now too tight and you have to start again with any treatment (lanolin or hoof oil or whatever) but this method has rescued a couple of my drums in the past.

Alan Ellicott N Wales UK

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Blu-ray means I win a PS3

The Blu-ray format has won the high definition video competition. This means that the Sony PlayStation 3 with its Blu-Ray player is the component of choice.

Here is my wish list (use this links to order, I get a kick back):

Friday, April 11, 2008

Hands Only CPR

Yesterday I recertified in CPR and AED as part of the medical emergency response team (MERT) at work. Among other things we discussed and practiced the new "Hands Only CPR" that the American Heart Association published a few weeks ago.

Bottom line, they are dead so you can't hurt them but there's still a chance that chest compressions done immediately will give the paramedics an opportunity to save their life.

I wonder why I keep calling it "no hands CPR"?

Saturday, April 5, 2008

A lion is not a house cat

These guys reared this lion from a baby in England but the authorities would not allow them to keep it once it reached maturity. They were forced to give it up. :(

They took it to Africa and placed it in a wildlife sanctuary to live free and die. About a year later they went to see their old pet. They were told she would not remember them and that approaching it would be dangerous.

Choosing not to heed the warning the brothers trekked into the preserve to find their now fully grown adult lion. This amateur film captured the "reunion". Even though there is no sound, poor picture quality and shot by someone with no camera experience, the intensity of the encounter is still apparent.

You will not find this on YouTube, so if you're not up to it don't play this movie.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Importing Old VHS Tapes Using a DV Camcorder

If you own a digital camcorder, but still have some older VHS (or other format) tapes, you can bring that footage into iMovie to edit or even just to store digitally. Connect your VCR to your camcorder and record the contents of the VHS tape to the DV tape. Then, you can import your footage into iMovie normally. (Or, use an analog-to-digital converter between the VCR and your Mac.)

Need to find the old tapes and borrow a digital camcorder one of these days.