When authorities determined that a 9-year-old boy playing with matches had inadvertently started the Buckweed Fire, they declined to press charges. And now they have concluded that five partying young men inadvertently started the Malibu fire over Thanksgiving. As a result, prosecutors have charged the men with felonies. In both cases, authorities made the right decision. Unlike the boy who caused the Buckweed blaze, the men in Malibu were all adults. Moreover, they all knew, or should have known, that starting fires in the cave above Corral Canyon is illegal. Doing so during a dry season of hot Santa Ana winds only compounded the infraction. So did failing to report the fire to authorities. That recklessness caused $100million in damages. Those responsible should be held accountable, if for no other reason than as a warning to others who could make the same horrible errors in judgment. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWhicker: Clemson demonstrates that it’s tough to knock out the champ 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Some Cambridge scientists engineered a four-character genetic code and made some proteins with it. They guided the process at every step, but claim that they “evolved” this code. Is that a fair use of language? This strange admixture of concepts is found in today’s issue of Nature.1 The confusion began right in the title: “Encoding multiple unnatural amino acids via evolution of a quadruplet-decoding ribosome.”…orthogonal pairs have been evolved to incorporate a range of unnatural amino acids…Here we synthetically evolve an orthogonal ribosome (ribo-Q1) that efficiently decodes a series of quadruplet codons….Because the synthetase�tRNA pairs used have been evolved to incorporate numerous unnatural amino acids it will be possible to encode more than 200 unnatural amino acid combinations using this approach.….this work provides foundational technologies for the encoded synthesis and synthetic evolution of unnatural polymers in cells.Natural ribosomes are very inefficient at, and unevolvable for quadruplet decoding, which would enhance misreading of the proteome.…orthogonal ribosomes … may, in principle, be evolved to efficiently decode quadruplet codons on the orthogonal message….To discover evolved orthogonal ribosomes that enhance quadruplet decoding we first created 11 saturation mutagenesis libraries in the 16S ribosomal RNA of ribo-X (an orthogonal ribosome previously evolved for efficient amber codon decoding on an orthogonal message)….We used ribo-X as a starting point for library generation because we hoped to discover evolved orthogonal ribosomes that gain the ability to efficiently decode quadruplet codons while maintaining the ability to efficiently decode amber codons on the orthogonal mRNA….To explicitly compare the fidelity of triplet decoding and quadruplet decoding for the evolved orthogonal ribosomes and the progenitor ribosome we used two independent methods….….which is derived from the … pair, by a series of generally applicable directed evolution steps….…it will be interesting to investigate the enhancement of protein function that may be accessed by combining the encoding of these cross-links with directed evolution methods.What’s notable in this paper was not only the flagrant use of evolve as an active method that the scientists used to investigate function for the purpose of enhancing protein synthesis, but also their use of the stem word “natural.” They spoke of unnatural amino acids (those not found in wild-type living cells), and described their attempts to achieve of “synthetic evolution of unnatural polymers in cells.” They spoke of the “inefficiency with which natural ribosomes decode quadruplet codons” but then praised their fidelity with their triplet system: “Natural ribosomes decode triplet codons with high fidelity (error frequencies ranging from 10-2 to 10-4 errors per codon have been reported).” Another mixing of unguided and designed concepts appears in their use of synthetic. They spoke of “synthetic evolution” (their lab work) but also used and altered the “natural” molecular machines that bind amino acids to transfer-RNA, the tRNA synthetases. Consider also how the concept of coding was used: they wished to achieve “synthetic genetic code expansion” They shifted seamlessly between the natural genetic code and their expanded, synthesized quadruplet code. With all this mixture of terms synthesizing and evolving natural and unnatural codes, the reader is left wondering what “evolved” on its own, if anything, and what was intelligently designed.1. Neuman, Wang, Davis, Garcia-Alai, Chin, “Encoding multiple unnatural amino acids via evolution of a quadruplet-decoding ribosome,” Nature 464, 441-444 (18 March 2010); doi:10.1038/nature08817.Answer: everything was intelligently designed, both the natural and unnatural codes and functions. This paper was one of the best examples in recent memory of Truman’s Law: “If you can’t convince them, confuse them.” Using evolve as a synonym for design is a clever way to blow smoke using equivocation. Words mean things. This has nothing to do with evolution in the way Darwin used it, and in the way the debate rages today. It has everything to do with intelligently designing codes to synthesize things they would not naturally do (that is, without the intervention of a human mind). These human designers did not “evolve” anything, and they did not rule out intelligent design in the “natural” systems. If they really wanted to talk about evolution, they should have left the lab and let “nature” take its course. “Synthetic evolution” is as sophoxymoronic (02/02/2008 commentary) as holy atheism.(Visited 31 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
(Image: Chris Kirchhoff,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. For more freephotos, visit the image library.)MEDIA CONTACTS• Soweto Food [email protected]@sowetofoodfestival.co.za• Adilia TeixeiraChannel Managed PRTel: +27 (0)11 327 5802Mobile: +27 (0)72 398 2525Email: [email protected]• Refiloe Mataboge+27 (0)72 622 0782• Mavis Mataboge+27 (0)72 458 6696• South African Chefs AssociationGraham Donet+27 11 482 7250USEFUL LINKS• Soweto Food Festival • South African Chefs Association• SowetoWilma den HartighThe first-ever Soweto Food Festival is set to celebrate Africa’s food heritage by showcasing both traditional ekasi cuisine – township food – and food from elsewhere on the continent, and will also introduce international cooking to the people of Soweto.“We would like to put township food on the map and bring international food to the township,” said Refiloe Mataboge, organiser of the festival, which will be held from 1 to 4 October 2009. She said people who don’t usually eat township food can sample it, and township residents who have not been exposed to foods from other parts of the world will have an opportunity to taste foreign dishes.According to Graham Donet, general manager of the South African Chefs Association (Saca), there are a number of misconceptions about indigenous South African food.“Traditional African cuisine is extremely varied and most people have not been exposed to its full scope,” he said. “We want to get away from the mopani worms that have been marketed for shock value and show people what wholesome tasty indigenous food is like.”Why township food?Sisters Refiloe and Mavis Mataboge identified the need for a food festival when they noticed that more people were moving back to Soweto. It seemed that the township’s food, the lively atmosphere and culture was a big drawcard.“We realised that there is no one fully capturing and telling the story of township cuisine and this is what we are setting out to do,” Mataboge explained.In recent years there has been growing interest in Soweto’s food establishments. Donet said this trend is encouraging because it shows that indigenous food is growing in popularity. The next goal is to see more South Africans choose township food establishments for a good night out.“What we want is people from other suburbs and areas in South Africa to also experience this and make the trip to Soweto to experience its vibrant culture,” he said.Food has a significant role in making cultures more accessible, according to Mokgadi Itsweng (PDF), head chef and owner of Black Sage, a catering company that specialises in contemporary African cuisine. In South Africa, food has been a main catalyst in making the townships more trendy.“There is a great need in society to learn about other cultures, and food is one of the easiest ways to do this,” Itsweng said.Mataboge said more restaurants and hotels are showing interest in serving traditional food as part of mainstream cuisine. “We believe that a great number of chefs are making an effort and we hope that through the Soweto Food Festival we can support them.”The origins of indigenous SA foodItsweng explained that South Africa’s food history is rooted in the country’s diverse population. Immigrants, settlers and migrant labourers brought much of today’s popular cuisine ideas, ingredients and food preparation techniques to the country.She believes that foreigners who made South Africa their home many years ago made a valuable contribution to food, spices and fresh produce diversity in the country. Immigrants brought with them the ingredients they needed to prepare their dishes, or adapted their dishes to the ingredients they found here. The ordinary orange carrot, for example, was brought into the region by the French Huguenots, and has now become widespread.Indian and Malaysian influences mean spicy dishes such as curry, bobotie and samoosas are now of South Africa’s food heritage.Even township food has incorporated external influences, and Itsweng believes that this diversity is what gives it such a wide appeal.“It is a merger between what is known as ‘western’ and ‘traditional African’ cuisine,” she said. Popular dishes such as pasta salads are a western influence, while atchar is uniquely South African.Food indigenous to the African continent also hasn’t remained unchanged. “Food is dynamic and always evolving,” she said. A common dish like morogo, made from indigenous spinach, has developed and now similar leafy crops from countries such as Zimbabwe, Kenya and Ghana are also consumed in South Africa.Itsweng has noticed that nowadays even township food has a healthy twist: “Food is cooked in less oil, olive oil is used and there is less deep frying,” she said. Salads and side dishes are also often stir fried or steamed.On offer at the festivalIt is South Africa’s food diversity that gives the Soweto Food Festival its significance. Numerous South African chefs will be preparing a variety of dishes ranging from everyday township food, to more daring local, African and international dishes. Itsweng is one of the chefs who will be preparing signature dishes at the festival.Saca will be running an interactive chef’s kitchen where top Soweto chefs such as Kabelo Segone will give demonstrations on township and worldwide cuisine. Audiences can also pick up tips on knife skills, new food preparation techniques as well as food trends.The practical food demonstrations will offer ideas to prepare tasty meals at home. Although many South Africans have been affected by the economic downturn, food remains an important part of everyday life.“We still celebrate with food, perhaps on a tighter budget, but it brings families and friends together,” Mataboge said.Township stokvels (informal savings clubs), catering companies and restaurants will also showcase their cooking talent. Traditional food will be on offer from many of South Africa’s cultural groups – Zulu, Xhosa, Tswana, Swazi and Venda.Some of South Africa’s food favourites such as magwenya or vetkoek (a large yeast dumpling fried in oil), kota/sephatlo or bunny chow (a hollowed out loaf of bread filled with curry) will also be available.Embassies in South Africa have been invited to bring their countries’ food to the festival and there will be wine tasting, whisky tasting and a beer garden. There will also be an area dedicated to learning about organic vegetable growing, health, nutrition and budgeting around grocery shopping.New trends in traditional foodDonet hopes that South Africa’s township economy will benefit as indigenous and township food becomes more widely accepted. Celebrity chefs such as Jamie Oliver (PDF) have recently placed the food industry on the map and as a result many young people are seeing hospitality and catering as a worthwhile career.“This event shows that there is a growing market for South Africa’s indigenous food and that people’s tastes and food preferences are becoming more sophisticated,” Donet said. Bringing more people to Soweto will also contribute to changing negative perceptions of townships in South Africa.“I would like to see people from north, west, east, south and west Johannesburg travel to township restaurants to enjoy a meal and experience more flavours and cultures.”The Soweto Food Festival takes place from 1 to 4 October at the Hyundai Stadium in Pimville. Tickets will be available at the entrance and cost R35 for adults and R10 for children. Visit www.sowetofoodfestival.co.za for more information.Do you have queries or comments about this article? Email Mary Alexander at [email protected]
Kathleen Artman Meeker is an Assistant Professor in the College of Education at the University of Washington where she specializes in Early Childhood Special Education. Kathleen has been a K-3 special educator, childcare assistant, coach, and researcher. She enjoys developing products that make research accessible to a wide audience and is a member of the Head Start National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning at the University of Washington. Her research focuses on using technology to make coaching efficient and effective for early childhood educators. In this short video Ms. Meeker shares about her work through the Department of Defense Child Development Virtual Lab School at The Ohio State University.The Department of Defense Child Development Virtual Lab School at The Ohio State University is an easy to navigate online professional development and resource system that empowers professionals to build their knowledge and skills around research-based best practices in child care and youth development. It’s supported by a collection of videos, research-based content, and relevant, interactive learning materials. It offers distinct tracks for center-based professionals including direct-care providers, training and curriculum specialists, and management personnel. There is also a track for home-based care providers. Ms. Meeker joined the Virtual Lab School team when it was funded in 2010. She led the content creation team and authored the Training and Curriculum Specialist courses. She also wrote the Child Abuse and Neglect courses. She joined the faculty at the University of Washington in 2013 and continued supporting the work of the Virtual Lab School through writing content and leading training.A transcript of this video can be found here.
Panasonic officially announces the GH5, the successor to the much loved GH4. Here’s everything we know.All images via Panasonic There was some early confusion at Panasonic’s GH5 announcement, as the company’s presentation announced that the camera shot 6K stills at 30fps. While those sound exactly like video specs, it turns out to be just a typo in the presentation. The GH5 will let users capture 6K stills. However the camera now offers 4K video up to 60fps, an upgrade to the GH4’s UHD 4K up to 30fps. The GH5 shoots 4:2:2 10-bit 4K footage internally. There are no confirmed specs on the HD footage yet, rumors suggest 1080p up to 120 fps.There are still more specs to come, as the design is not yet final. As the rumors suggested, the GH5 prototype is currently on display at Photokina. Panasonic has announced a handful of details. The GH5 will sport a new 18-megapixel sensor and will his shelves by mid-2017. (There are new rumblings that the company has a goal to reach 8K with a 32-megapixel sensor by the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.)As far as the 6K photos, here’s what the official press release has to say:“6K PHOTO” is a high-speed burst-shooting function that cuts a still image out of a 4:3 or 3:2 video footage with approx. 18-megapixel (Approx.6000 x 3000 effective pixel count) that 6K image manages. The name “6K PHOTO” is tentative.Here is a quick little teaser Panasonic put together, even though it’s mostly focused on the GH4.As the GH5 is still in development, there is no confirmed retail price. Here are all the Panasonic GH5 specs that have been confirmed to date.Specs:18MP Sensor6K stills4K video at 23.98fps, 24fps, 25fps, 30fps, 50fps, 60fps10-bit 4:2:2Micro Four ThirdsPanasonic also announced three new Micro Four Thirds lenses at f/2.8 – f/4.0Wide 8-18mmStandard 12-60mmTelephoto 50-200mmAre you pumped about the GH5? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
BJP president Amit Shah on Saturday said the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) expected to bag 300 seats in the coming Lok Sabha elections with a contribution of nearly 50 seats from the northeastern region and West Bengal. The party was in the process of preparing a wide-ranging poll manifesto based on feedbacks from all State units.“There is no challenge to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the NDA. We are going to win 300 seats in the Lok Sabha polls,” Mr. Shah said at a news conference in Agartala.Mr. Shah, accompanied by a team of senior party office-bearers, arrived in Agartala to oversee organisational matters. Addressing a huge gathering of the party’s ”Pristha Pramukhs” (page observers) at Swami Vivekananda Stadium, he spoke on political and organisation issues and credited the party workers for the significant win in the Assembly elections in Tripura.Lauds Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb Later, speaking to media, he lauded Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb for leading all- round development activities in the State. He said, “The State has been immensely benefited from the 129 schemes the Central government introduced and the cooperation from the Centre would change life of all sections of people of the State”. Most of the poll pledges made in Tripura already fulfilled.Lashing out at the Congress and its effort to create a ‘mahagatbandhan’ to take on the BJP, he said it would not yield any fruitful result. The BJP was confident of winning 21 seats in the Northeast and at least 23 in West Bengal.Mr. Shah said he would visit all the States, including that of the Northeast before Lok Sabha polls. “The BJP means development and through its good governance, 22 crore families benefited under different schemes.”On Ram mandir issue, he said the matter was pending in the apex court, but the BJP was determined to help construct a magnificent temple at Ayodhya.