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Richard Heath
Scientist, nerd, home brewer, atheist.
Scientist, nerd, home brewer, atheist.

Richard's posts

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This is so flippin' messed up! Sending viruses in the mail? And somehow these people think this is safer than getting a vaccination? These people are CRAZY!
And the winner of the most fucked-up thing I've heard this week goes to: anti-vaccination morons who are trading pathogens in the post. As this piece says, "The only difference between this and bioterrorism is intent."

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Someone is sharing Desiree Jennings videos from 2009 trying to scare up more anti-vac hysteria. Please read this before you share that propaganda.

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It is time for me to get a new phone. My contract with AT&T is about to expire, and my iPhone 3GS screen is starting to die. Is there any reason NOT to get the Galaxy S II?

[Secondary question - is Sprint's Samsung Epic Touch the same phone as AT&T's Samsung Galaxy S II?]

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Interesting idea. Basically, it forces everyone to have a pre-nup, then there is no need for messy (or amiable, like mine!) divorces... It would also make people realize that if you want to stay married, you have to work at it or the spouse just walks!

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This would be amazing if it pans out! 
Imagine if you could look at something once and remember it forever. You would never have to ask for directions again. Now a group of scientists has isolated a protein that mega-boosts your ability to remember what you see.

A group of Spanish researchers reported today in Science that they may have stumbled upon a substance that could become the ultimate memory-enhancer. The group was studying a poorly-understood region of the visual cortex. They found that if they boosted production of a protein called RGS-14 (pictured) in that area of the visual cortex in mice, it dramatically affected the animals' ability to remember objects they had seen.

Mice with the RGS-14 boost could remember objects they had seen for up to two months. Ordinarily the same mice would only be able to remember these objects for about an hour.

The researchers concluded that this region of the visual cortex, known as layer six of region V2, is responsible for creating visual memories. When the region is removed, mice can no longer remember any object they see.

If this protein boosts visual memory in humans, the implications are staggering. In their paper, the researchers say that it could be used as a memory-enhancer – which seems like an understatement. What's particularly intriguing is the fact that this protein works on visual memory only. So as I mentioned earlier, it would be perfect for mapping. It would also be useful for engineers and architects who need to hold a lot of visual images in their minds at once. And it would also be a great drug for detectives and spies.

Could it also be a way to gain photographic memory? For example, if I look at a page of text will I remember the words perfectly? Or will I simply remember how the page looked?

I can't see much of a downside for this potential drug, unless the act of not forgetting what you see causes problems or trauma.

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Time to get reading. There are so many on here I haven't read yet...

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Good tip here! Especially as I'm getting a lot of error messages right now when I try to add a big circle someone has shared with me - I"m going to need to find that post again when the rush slows a bit!
See All Shared Circles

My stream is flooded with shared circles and I've found a ton of amazing and interesting people to follow.

If you want to check out all the circles shared with you (or shared to public), use this search:

Or just search for "shared a circle with you".

If you're wondering the colors are from:
11 Photos - View album

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Added my profile to the Google+ directory #160295

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Too funny! Don't blink!
If you like Doctor Who and cats, you will LOVE this video.
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