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Joe Hennessey • Author at Mirror Daily

The lunar landing was a costly mission that NASA doesn’t want to repeat.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – There has been a lot of talk lately that NASA will try to send a team to the moon again. But should we go back to the moon? What are the benefits of such a costly trip? Is it more to this than showing the Chinese that we can do it again? And more importantly, shouldn’t we focus more on the Mars mission?

Paul Spudis, a lunar scientist and geologist explores this subject in his latest book, “The Value of the Moon: How to study, live, and prosper in space using Moon’s resources. According to him, we should go back to the moon.

Spudis is proposing a private-public partnership between commercial companies and NASA. The endgame would be a lunar base. But he predicts the facility would be built approximately 16 after the project’s official start.

The scientist also writes about the fact that China is working on a lunar project of its own, and it is highly possible that taikonauts will step foot on Earth’s satellite sometime in the next 5 to 10 years. And the communist country is not the only one eyeing the Moon.

Europe and Russia are also interested in sending a manned team on the satellite, but Spudis believes the Chinese will be the first nation to succeed.

The author is not bothered by the fact that other countries want to explore the celestial body, but he is criticizing the lack of interest that the United States is showing when it comes to establishing a palpable presence in the region between the satellite and our planet. In fact, Americans did get there first.

Spudis is proposing that an extended lunar mission could ultimately bring lots of profits to the nation. He speculates that things like Moon-made water and space commerce will soon dominate the market. Also, he sees great potential for building customized space habitats, and extensive satellite networks that would be capable of providing enough bandwidth for internet and telecommunication to a hemisphere.

The view of the author seems like it was taken out of a science fiction novel. He thinks that in a couple of decades Earth and Moon trips would be as standard as Washington – Florida air flights.

He continues to say that the best places to build a settlement are the poles where the lunar ice craters are. Also, they could harness energy from the direct sunlight.

So if you want to know what scientists answered when asked “should we go back to the moon?”, then check out Spudis’ long answer.

Image source: Wikimedia

The billionaire Republican candidate believes climate change is the same thing as seasonal weather.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – When it comes to giving lengthy answers that say nothing, the presidential candidate is a lead authority. But that might be his only area of expertise because recently climate change trumped Trump.

In the last paragraph of the transcript published by the Washington Post, Trump was asked his opinion on climate change. The answer given by the Republican candidate is as rhetorical as always, but it’s also very wrong.

The billionaire showed that he was oblivious to everything related to climate change, even the very definition of the theory. Climate change trumped Trump, but the presidential candidate is not worried about anything because, according to the statistics, his followers share his belief system.

“I think there’s a change in weather. I am not a great believer in man-made climate change. I’m not a great believer.”

This is how his answer begun. Naturally, he made used of his signature rhetorical style. The beginning is promising. It sounds like he is informed about the subject but chose to ignore it because it stands against his beliefs. But then he proceeded on saying that

“There is certainly a change in weather that goes – if you look, they had global cooling in the 1920s, and now they have global warming, although now they don’t know if they have global warming.”

Apparently, Trump is not that informed as he first appeared to be. He makes three mistakes in just one phrase.

For starters, climate change is not what he thinks it is. Because judging from his answer, for him, a rainy morning followed by a sunny afternoon is equal to climate change. But that’s just how weather works.

Secondly, he is a bit off in his timeline. In the 1970s, a significant number of climate change researchers believed that the Earth is heading towards a new ice age. But their theories were short lived, and the fuss died out as abruptly as it began.

And third, global warming and global cooling theories make up climate change. But after this, he keeps on saying that

“They call [climate change] all sort of things; now they’re using “extreme weather” I guess more than any other phrase.”

It seems that climate change trumped Trump completely. The term “extreme weather” is usually used when a meteorological phenomenon is more violent than usual. Take El Nino for instance. In the past year, the occurrence was even more powerful, and it contributed to the disappearance of a large Bolivian lake. Climate change is what causes extreme weather.

But the billionaire presidential candidate cannot be swayed.

“Perhaps there’s a minor effect, but I’m not a big believer in man-made climate change.”

Image source: Flickr

Twitter drew inspiration from other social media platforms and is now testing stickers.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – Twitter is starting to get desperate. And users can quickly acknowledge the company’s desperation by looking at their latest developments that somehow resemble other leading or rising social media platforms. The most recent things they borrowed and adapted? Now Twitter is testing new sticker features that will transform the pictures of its users.

The fact that Twitter is doing everything in its power to attract new users, and to keep the old ones interested is not a new thing. Just last week there was a social media civil war surrounding the network. The reason for the clash between users was the fact that the social network implemented a default algorithm that revolutionized the feed.

At that point, many users accused Twitter of copying its chief rival, Facebook. And now, the same fuddy-duddies will have the opportunity of comparing Twitter’s new testing features with, basically, a ton of other ones that are already available on different platforms.

Twitter is testing new sticker features, and somehow, they seem very familiar. As @XBLFoxes, a privileged user who was welcomed in the beta tests, shows, the new stickers aren’t very different from what Facebook and Snapchat are already offering.

From the looks of it, users can upload a photo and then go the last button on the right, and choose one or more stickers to add to their picture. It’s certainly not a new feature, but the company may not be interested in novelty.

It seems that what they are planning is the possibility of sticker filling pictures posted by other people. In other words, viral posts will become even more popular because users will be able to bring their own alterations to the tweets.

Rumors have it that there will also be a contest. Somebody uploads a photo, and then any interested user alters it, thus entering the sticker competition. This way, more people will be encouraged to participate in breaking news or trending conversations.

Twitter is testing new sticker features, but for the moment, they are only in the testing phase. Users can’t know for sure whether or not the colorful labels will stick. It all depends on the way the people randomly chosen to participate in the beta will react to them.

It’s like Facebook and the reaction buttons. There were more, but some considered them confusing and useless, the same faith may be awaiting the funny cartoon like pictures. The only solution is to wait and see.

Image source: Pixabay

The minke is the smallest baleen whale. It’s snout is designed to catch plankton and small fish.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – According to the latest headcount, 333 whales were killed by the Japan fleet. The reasons for the slaughter were purely “scientific” seeing as the United Nations banned the commercial hunting of the mammals.

Precisely 333 whales were killed by the Japan fleet that returned on Thursday. The vessels set sail in December, and they headed out in the Southern Ocean. In four months, they managed to capture 333 whales that only served their study if they were killed.

New Zealand and Australia alongside worldwide animal rights organizations fought to keep the fleet in the port stating that the so-called study invoked by the Japanese is nothing more than a pretext to carry out a bloody tradition.

Last year, this annual scientific mission was halted by the International Justice Court of the United Nations. The officials then stated that the annual hunt that was labeled as a scientific mission was nothing more than a commercial venture.

But the United Nations couldn’t keep the fisherman at bay for too long. Due to the fact that the provisions of the act emitted by the International Commission of Whaling state that scientific missions are allowed to perform research on dead animals, Japan decided to continue to send the hunting party at sea, but under a different name.

Shinzo Abe, the Prime Minister of Japan, was determined to see the expedition back and doing what it was meant to before the country signed the whale protection act. According to the experts, the continuous refusal to give up on the practice is due in large part to a small group of politicians with a lot of power in the government.

The most obvious clue that the scientific mission invoked by the Japanese government is nothing but a ruse is the fact that the meat gathered from the hundreds of whales butchered by the whale hunters doubling as researchers is distributed for general consumption.  Among other places, the meat is served in school cafeterias.

The primary focus of the research conducted by the Japanese government every whale season is seeing if the mammal population has replenished so that commercial hunting could be reinstated. Seeing as 333 whales were killed by the Japan fleet only this year, it may take some time for them to restore the number of individuals.

In the season between 2013 and 2014, the fleet managed to capture 251 minke specimens while in the previous one the number was considerably lower. Historical catches revolve around 850 whales captured during a single expedition.

Image source: Flickr

David Wilson declared he is not sorry for what happened with the teenager.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – An HIV-positive man raped 2-year-old and impregnated a 14-year-old. When questioned about his deeds, he said that he is not sorry for the sex, but regrets the fact that he passed the HIV to the girls. The court sentenced him to life in prison.

Gruesome stories are told about men condemned to life in jail after being accused of child rape. As the legend goes, a lot of them end up spending little time behind bars because other inmates help them achieve a significantly shorter lifespan.

If the stories are real, than the future colleagues of David Wilson won’t be very sympathetic when they hear his life’s story and the reason that landed him in jail.

After his drug-abusing sister had moved away, Wilson was left in charge of taking care of his niece. The 34-year-old man left in charge of the 2-year-old infant did atrocious things to the toddler. His actions were so cruel that they left an entire nation in awe.

Wilson repeatedly raped the little girl. The sexual abuse was so intense that doctors were forced to perform reconstruction surgery on the developing genital parts of the toddler. And apart from raping her, the man also infected the child with HIV, gonorrhea and chlamydia.

Since the immunity system of a two years old is not as efficient as that of a male adult, the sexually transmitted diseases that the man bestowed upon the child significantly affected her weakened organism. So aside from being charged with multiple accounts of sexual assault, the man should be accused of seriously endangering the life of the toddler.

But his deeds are worse. The HIV positive man not only abused his own niece, but he also infected and impregnated 14 years old.

The girl, whose identity was not disclosed, declared that they were in love. According to her testimony, Wilson would pick her up from school, park his car in an intimate location and proceed to have intercourse with the minor.

The last time this happened, they did not use protection. In consequence, the 14 years old teenager is now pregnant and HIV positive.

Wilson also stated that he is in love with the girl. He stated that he is not sorry for the sex because their love powered it. Instead, he is sorry for the fact that he infected her with several STDs.

An HIV-positive man raped 2-year-old and impregnated 14-year-old, and he is only sentenced to life in prison.

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The Guantanamo Bay area has the potential of becoming a national tourist attraction.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – Barack Obama will make a historic visit to Cuba. And in preparation for the event, the authorities are considering a serious change in the landscape. Guantanamo Bay will become Guantanamo Park, or, at least, that is what the latest proposal published in Science journal suggests.

Due to the recent positive change in the relations between the United States and Cuba, scientists are already working on various ways to revolutionize the country’s touristic attractions. Guantanamo Bay will become Guantanamo Park in an effort to attract more US tourists.

Joe Roman, a co-author of the study published in Science journal, believes that coastal systems will be placed under a lot more pressure now that the US embassy is opened again. The Vermont University conservation biologist believes that the Bay area presents a lot of potential in the tourism department.

There is a strict conservational law in Cuba, known as “Law 81” which was adopted by Fidel Castro at the 19992 Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit. The law blames consumer societies for the environment destruction, thus limiting the possibilities of transforming any areas in a tourist attraction.

But what Roman is proposing is nothing more than a sustainability plan. According to the conservation biologist, if Guantanamo Bay will become Guantanamo Park, both the wildlife and the people will benefit from the change. Tourism will boost Cuba’s economy, and they will be able to spend more on conservation efforts.

Furthermore, Roman points out the fact that there are many great scientific minds in the country, but they lack resources. If his proposal is taken into consideration, the local scientists will be provided with necessary equipment and help from other members of the scientific community.

Roman is hopeful that such an endeavor will underline the benefits of a collaboration and that it will help the Cuban scientist and authorities realize the amount of good that could come from such a project. His endgame is to create the basis for a permanent collaboration.

Moreover, the conservation biologist hopes that the Oceanographic Institution of Woods Hole could be replicated into a Caribbean Woods Hole. But Hauke Kite-Powell, a scientist at WHOI believes Roman is way too optimistic, and such an endeavor will require a lot of time, work, and resources.

Kite-Powell considers the idea of another institute as being futile because WHOI is already engaged in research at a global level. But there is potential in a new facility when it comes to the pristine tropical ecosystems and coral reefs that Cuba is harboring.

For the moment, the idea that Guantanamo Bay will become Guantanamo Park remains just a scientific proposition published in a specialized journal. But it is good to see that President Obama’s visit stirs up the imagination of scientists worldwide.

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Book are not only portals towards other worlds, but they are also a way of exercising our brain.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – Reading is healthy for the mind and body, due to the fact that it not only improves brain functions, but it also relieves stress. So if you have a library card and a gym membership one sitting in your wallet, collecting dust, you might want to use the first one. Of course, a balanced lifestyle dictates in favor of the latter, too, but reading is the sport of the brain.

Brewing up a nice cup of tea, cozying up on the comfy chair or in the corner of a couch and opening up a good book is a perfect scenario for a lot of people. And it’s not just a relaxing way to spend an afternoon, according to various research, reading is healthy for the mind and the body.

Apart from expanding your knowledge and escaping into wondrous worlds, picking the minds of famous authors while playing made-up games or exploring the nine circles of Hell, there are several physical benefits of burying yourself in an excellent book.

Reading Reduced Stress

Reading a good book (and by good book we understand any work of fiction or non-fiction that is appealing to the reader) for more than six minutes can reduce the levels of stress with 68 percent.

Researchers at the Sussex University discovered that a person than engages in reading is able to shake off stress much quicker than a person who decides to walk it off or rock it off.

Reading Improves Your Memory

The director and president of the Haskins Laboratories at Yale, Ken Pugh, discovered that reading engages different parts of the human brain. When browsing the pages of a book, we wire up associative learning areas, as well as language, vision and a couple more.

This means that reading a book is as good for the brain as Dwayne Johnson’s regime is for his brick-tight muscles. Furthermore, researchers at the University of Chicago discovered a link between reading and slower memory decline rates.

Reading Makes You More Empathic

Researchers at Emory University found that the memory center is not the only part of the brain that we “work out” while reading.

It seems that reading makes you more empathic with other people because fiction allows you to develop and train your imagination to work better.

Re-Reading Is Therapeutic

All voracious readers have a book that they turn to whenever they have the blues or feel like life is not making sense anymore.

And there is a scientific explanation for that. It seems that re-reading a book at different times in a person’s life leads to a beneficial type of self-reflection. So why spend money on therapists when you can pick up that worn out copy of *insert favorite book title here*?

Reading Increases the Attention Span

Children benefit from this the most. Because stories have a traditional frame, it allows them to better grasp the notion of order. They learn to follow the natural steps of a situation, and they train their brains to focus on something for a longer period of time.

So next time you have some spare time to kill, just pick up a book. Reading is healthy for the mind and body and as Stephen King said,

““Books are the perfect entertainment: no commercials, no batteries, hours of enjoyment for each dollar spent. What I wonder is why everybody doesn’t carry a book around for those inevitable dead spots in life.”’

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Disruptive patients remove the focus of the physician from the illness to the patient’s whims.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – Usually, people don’t go to the doctor because they want to chat. Something bothers them, and they already feel vulnerable. And there are a lot of individuals out there who don’t react well when feeling down or in pain. But according to two separate studies, bad patients receive worse care, so you should watch your temper when deciding to visit the doctor.

Studies suggest that bad patients receive worse care than people who let the doctors perform their duty without interruption. And the physicians don’t do it on purpose; they get distracted by the fits of rage, or tantrums, or patients who subtly, or, not so subtly, offer them their own diagnosis and treatment advice.

Silvia Mamede, a doctor who worked in both cited studies, declared that bad patients receive worse care than quiet, undisruptive ones because the current physicians can’t concentrate when consulting them.

According to Dr. Mamede, fifteen percent of all patients are disrespectful, distrustful or overly demanding. Because of their attitude, physicians usually can’t focus hard enough and end up giving a wrong diagnosis.

Because it is almost impossible to study the disruptive patients – doctors relationship in real life, a sample of physicians were given an assortment of scenarios about disruptive and neutral patients. The first ones were the ones that acted helplessly, ignored the advice of doctors or made frequent demands.

The doctors that participated in the study were then asked to give a diagnosis according to the information provided by both “patients”.

According to Donald Redelmeier, a core scientist at the Toronto Evaluative Sciences Institute who wrote a commentary on the study, the approach used by the researchers is reasonable, feasible and ethical.

In the first study that gathered a sample of 63 doctors that practiced family medicine, the physicians made forty-two more oversights when dealing with disruptive patients than when they had to diagnose a normal, well-behaving one. In the case of the latter, the mistake percentage was of only six.

In the second study, the one in which the researchers analyzed the response of 74 residents of internal medicine, the conclusion was the same. Bad patients receive worse care than good ones.

In the case of the residents, the misbehaving patients were poorly diagnosed in twenty percent of the times.

There are no details in the study to indicate whether the wrong diagnosis was completely off, or just slightly different than the diseases that the patients actually suffered from.

Bad patients receive worse care mainly because they make the doctors pay more attention to them than to their medical conditions.

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The creation of the teddy bear was inspired by a story of pity and humanity involving Roosevelt.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – The history of the teddy bear is a bit tangled and not as romantic as some think, but definitely a story that offers a few life lessons. And seeing how the black bear population of Louisiana is finally bouncing back and the ferocious, fluffy animals are now officially out of the threatened list, it may be that, more than a hundred years after it happened, the protagonist of the story may declare himself proud, if he were still alive.

A long time ago, at the beginning of the 20th century, a man was invited to join a hunt. And he did, but the outcome did not produce yet another bear carpet laid in front of a fire place. No, this is the history of the teddy bear, and its end leaves a kind of Chinese sauce taste in people’s mouth. It’s sweet, but it’s also pretty sour.

On the eve of a November day in 1902, the governor of Mississippi was preparing to leave his home in the small town of Smedes and attend a bear hunt with a distinguished guest. Theodore Roosevelt, aka the president of the United States, was joining the governor in what was considered a gentleman activity back in the day.

The two men, accompanied by numerous hunting dogs and skilled folks that lived of the meat they were able to track and kill in the forest, set out to kill a great black beast.

For you see, the black bears were not endangered in Roosevelt’s time. Or so the locals of the southern parts of the United States believed. The hibernating mammal was considered a nuisance, a threat to the wellbeing of the citizens and their farm animals.

The forest abounded with black bears (mainly because their habitat was being slowly, but surely destroyed and narrowed by humans, but they realized this after about 90 years) so it wasn’t long until the scouts found one and the chase started.

The president and the governor rode through the forest accompanied by their hunting mates and finally, after a few hours of healthy, blood rushing hunting, one of the men that was part of the party found it surrounded by dogs. The bear, exhausted from the chase and probably starving due to increasing human intervention in his habitat was thumped on the head and tied to a tree.

Protocol demanded that the president himself killed the beast. But upon arriving and seeing the terrible condition in which the bear presented himself, Roosevelt turned around and refused to take part in the spectacle. He only asked the men that accompanied him to end the poor animal’s suffering.

A cartoonist was there and immortalized the whole scene. Soon enough, toy stores were selling stuffed animals called teddy bears. The children’s toys reminded people of the kind-hearted man that ruled over the country.

Unfortunately, it took almost another century for them to realize that the black bear should have been protected and only when there were only 150 specimens remaining in the wild did the conservation efforts began.

But the history of the teddy bear ends in high spirits. As of now, the state of Louisiana officially removed the black bear from the list of threatened animals. But there is still a long way to go before the black bear will be out of the woods.

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People still demonstrate anti-Semitic behavior when they interact with persons of the Jewish-faith.

(Mirror Daily, United States) – It’s one thing to cheer for your team, but a whole different thing to attack the faith of the opposing one. But it seems that even today when tolerance is preached in every school, and every religion, incidents like this happen. Only last week a group of Catholic students chanted anti-Semitic taunts during a basketball game.

The Newton North high school hosted a basketball match between its team and the one from Catholic Memorial. And things started to go wild not on the court, but on the bleachers. As the teams were warming up and preparing for the game, the hosts asked the visitors where they left their girls.

This was meant to be a taunt, seeing as Catholic Memorial is a school for boys. But instead of turning the other cheek, or ignoring the Newton North crowd, the response shocked the entire attendance.

The Catholic Memorial crowd started shouting in unison “You killed Jesus.” Approximately 75 young boys were shouting the anti-Semitic chant, and the rest of the people present in the audience went completely silent in shock and awe.

Naturally, the principals of both schools immediately responded and urged both sides to bring the chants and taunts to a halt. But the damage was already done.

One student, who preferred to keep his anonymity, declared that the way in which the Catholic Memorial boys were chanting in unison seemed like something pre-planned rather than a spur of the moment reaction to being called a “sausage fest” by the Newton North attendees.

According to the superintendent at the Newton North, David Fleishman, he arrived at the high-school after the incident took place. Upon entering the institution, he was approached by terribly upset parents that were shaken by the words they heard from the Catholic Memorial crowd.

Fleishman considered that the events had to be reported to the “Anti-Defamation League.”  The Newton attendees will extensively discuss the repercussions of their actions on Monday. The president of the high-school promised to attend personally to the situation and end the “abhorrent behavior” demonstrated by his students.

After the management of both high schools put a stop to the disturbing chants, the boys at Catholic Memorial were obligated to apologize individually to the principal of Newton North and shake his hand.

Catholic students chanted anti-Semitic taunts during a basketball game, and all they had to do was apologize. Most of the Jewish-faith parents that were present at the events think that the punishment should be much more severe because they insulted their entire belief system.

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