blivet

In the USA, the third Monday in January is a holiday to honor the birthday of civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. Federal, as well as most state and county employees have the day off work.

More Kennewick – How NAGPRA affects Kennewick Man
The Department of Interior has confirmed a 9,000+ year old date for Kennewick Man, which makes him de facto Native American and therefore subject to NAGPRA. From kris hirst at about.com.

The Kennewick skeleton has become a flash point for a reaction by some of the professional archaeological community about legal constraints on how we do our work. It has also raised some long smoldering notions concerning the initial populations of the New World.

The Mars Polar Lander is officially lost. <sigh> The story from NASA’s Polar Lander site; CNN; BBC.

blivet

BBC coverage of the initial findings from the Chandra X-ray Observatory.
Chandra solves cosmic X-ray mystery

The Chandra X-ray observatory orbiting the Earth has solved a long-standing puzzle of modern astronomy – the source of the X-rays that bathe the Universe in a mysterious high-energy glow.

NASA has a Chandra X-ray Observatory News web site.

Every moment contains the potential for clarity, for that glimpse of reality. Sometimes you don’t even have to look for it. Just remember its always there.

Well, it is kind of quiet on the archaeology and DOJ vs Microsoft front. Monday should change that I bet…

blivet

I expect there will be more Kenniwick Man news, as well as more on Microsoft …

I’ll be your teaching Assistant …

I'll be your teaching Assistant …:

I saw this on slashdot:

The Matrix is now the focus of an introductory philosophy class at the University of Washington in Seattle. According to Sci-Fi Wire, instructor David Nixon based the class on the philosophical themes and religious archetypes of the film. Nixon got the idea after seeing the film five times in theaters and realizing that it served to illustrate such concepts as perception, the mind and free will.

blivet

17:40 Lots more to notice after I get home.

“KENNEWICK MAN OVER 9000 YEARS OLD AND NATIVE AMERICAN ACCORDING TO NAGPRA LAW Cultural Affiliation Studies underway to analyze evidence of Shared Group Identity with present day American Indian Tribes The Department of the Interior today announced its conclusions on the first of two questions Interior is answering for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: whether the human skeletal remains found in the Columbia River (known as Kennewick Man) are to be considered Native American. The Department of the Interior considers the Kennewick remains “Native American” for the purposes of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1990 (NAGPRA). The decision is based upon recent radiocarbon dating, analysis of a lithic point embedded in the left hip and other anthropological and sediment analysis performed in February, 1999.” more from the National Park Service

“Kennewick Man expected to go Native.” more from Channel 13 in Seattle

“Department of the Interior scientists have dated the remains to 8,410 radiocarbon years – or as old as 9,300 calendar years. Interior officials planned to release their results today, along with their decision on whether to classify the skeleton as Native American under federal law. In other developments, the leader of an Old Norse pagan group said Wednesday that the Asatru Folk Assembly was withdrawing from the legal dispute.” more from ABC News

16:30 Wow! Lots of things happen during the day.

Gates steps down as CEO of Microsoft. And so it begins…

Researchers clone monkey by splitting embryo

At 7:15 (-0700 GMT) a quick pass over Scripting News, CNN, slashdot, Wired, and some blogs didn’t turn up anything that piqued my interest. Not that there isn’t anything out there, we all know there is. I need a crawler…

Off to work.

blivet

Prosecutors apparently reach plan to break up Microsoft
Sigh, I no longer have even a marginally coherent opinion or idea about what should be done here. I’ve always used the “other” operating systems (Amiga, MacOS, various flavors of Un*x) so I’ve been biased for a looong time. Still, if the app side of the fence didn’t have an unfair advantage (access to system calls and non-documented features) the playing field might be more level. I’m not at all confident that the consumer would benefit from a breakup. What if things got (shudder) worse? Still, its not so much that Microsoft ‘beat’ competent companies. WordPerfect, Lotus 123, AmiPro, and Netscape are all case studies in ‘stupid things companies do’. Apple is a whole course by itself (save the flames, I have a house full of Macintoshes, I continue to drink the Kool-Aid).

Bubbles in Guinness Do Go Down, Study Finds How many of us have had this discussion? 🙂

blivet

Galileo Findings Boost Idea of Other-worldly Ocean

When NASA’s Galileo spacecraft swooped past Jupiter’s moon Europa a week ago, it picked up powerful new evidence that a liquid ocean lies beneath Europa’s icy crust. As the spacecraft flew 218 miles (351 kilometers) above the icy moon on January 3, its magnetometer instrument studied changes in the direction of Europa’s magnetic field. Galileo’s magnetometer observed directional changes consistent with the type that would occur if Europa contained a shell of electrically conducting material, such as a salty, liquid ocean.

The Solar System Simulator is a fascinating web app to create a view of a planet or satellite at various dates and times.

That’s it for today. The update schedule for this site is waaaay off kilter, but hey – it beats not working.

Chop wood, carry water, do weblog.

blivet

A very good friend of mine, Historian Karl Friday (University of Georgia), is going to be here (Las Vegas) next week for DEMA (SCUBA industry convention). They’re flying him in from Japan. I love this town!

President Clinton is going to declare some new National Monuments in the West.

President Clinton is scheduled to visit one of the most revered natural wonders in the United States on Tuesday, the Grand Canyon. But some nearby residents say they are not happy about Clinton’s visit and the reason for it.

The president is expected to expand the national monument status of the region to include about 1 million acres of land near the canyon.

PRIMATES ON THE BRINK New List Spotlights World‚s Top 25 Most Endangered

After surviving a century with no extinctions, 25 species of apes, monkeys, lemurs and other primates now risk disappearing forever, according to a report released today by Conservation International and the Primate Specialist Group of IUCN–the World Conservation Union‚s Species Survival Commission.

I’ll update later if I can – I’ve just started a new position.

blivet

Went to see Fantasia 2000 with Audrey and SirDeath. I recommend it highly.

With a DVD in the house I finally got to see The Matrix. Keanu Reeves plays the Enlightened One. Again. I love this movie!

Microsoft Certified Professional Action Heroes! Jump into action with Dan, Kim, and Nate your desktop buddies! Neato! Even if they didn’t include my favorite, TGIF Joe. Almost as cool as the Intel bunny-suited figures. </sarcasm>

General Science

January 20, 2000. The year’s first full moon will also be a total lunar eclipse in North America. MSNBC has the story.
“The moon will enter the penumbra, the lighter, outer part of Earth‚s shadow, at 9:03 p.m. ET.”

blivet

Personal Archaeology

Late Friday I accepted a temporary position with the Las Vegas Springs Preserve. I’ll be working with some people I genuinely respect. Coooool

For some reason I’m having a great deal of trouble connecting to this site and several others associated with Userland, but not Scripting News. I don’t know if the problem lies here on my machine or out there. I’m having lots of other problems here so this page may not be updated regularly for a bit.

blivet

Favorite comment via mailing list of the week:

I know someone who always carries a couple meters of optical fiber whenever he goes hiking, so that if he gets lost all he has to do is bury the fiber and wait for a backhoe to come and cut through it.

Thanks to SirDeath for this: while away the hours with the PERPETUAL BUBBLEWRAP! From Javascript nonsense for the terminally bored

Larry Augustin of VA Linux Systems was on Charlie Rose (PBS) last night. He seems like a very realistic person. I liked him!

slashdot interviews major deity Steve Wozniak

A brief history of the future an interview with Professor Stephen Hawking from The Sydney Morning Herald. I would have liked a little less of the reporter’s perspective and winced when I read ‘a man with a freakishly quick, brilliant and creative mind condemned forever to articulate his thoughts at the speed of an imbecile.’ Still, I enjoy reading about Hawking.

I’m still fighting to get the printer working while the cablemodem is hooked up. I thought it would be trivial. That was a week ago. Of course its nobody’s responsibility because the printer will work with the bridge without the cable modem hooked up, the cable modem connects to the computers fine, and the new iMac works fine. Still, I ‘know’ (heavy caveats with the use of ‘know’) it’s in the cable modem because everything changes when it enters the picture. I can’t do file sharing or anything else over EtherTalk/AppleTalk/LocalTalk and I have no proof other than observational logic. No one at Cox claims to know anything about Macintoshes. I’m not suprised