‘The Oppau explosion occurred on September 21, 1921 when a tower silo storing 4,500 tonnes of a mixture of ammonium sulfate and ammonium nitrate fertilizer exploded at a BASF plant in Oppau, now part of Ludwigshafen, Germany, killing 500–600 people and injuring about 2,000 more.
The plant began producing ammonium sulfate in 1911, but during World War I when Germany was unable to obtain the necessary sulfur, it began to produce ammonium nitrate as well. Ammonia could be produced without overseas resources, using the Haber process.
Compared to ammonium sulfate, ammonium nitrate is strongly hygroscopic, so the mixture of ammonium sulfate and nitrate clogged together under the pressure of its own weight, turning it into a plaster-like substance in the 20 m high silo. The workers needed to use pickaxes to get it out, a problematic situation because they could not enter the silo and risk being buried in collapsing fertilizer.
To ease their work, small charges of dynamite were used to loosen the mixture. [..]’
‘A private intelligence company has been engaged by police to secretly monitor internet and email use by activist and protest groups, a report says.
The company was hired to monitor and report on the internet activities of anti-war campaigners, animal rights activists, environmental campaigners, and other protest groups, Fairfax Media reported.
It was hired by Victorian Police, the Australian Federal Police and the federal Attorney-General’s department.
The Melbourne-based firm has for the past five years monitored websites, online chat rooms, social networking sites, email lists and bulletin boards, the report said.
It has gathered intelligence on planned protests and other activities, and many of those on the watch list have broken no laws, the report said.’
‘The cab of Paul Goncalves’ truck looks more like a hospital room than the helm of a mighty 18-wheeler.
It even caught the attention of Montreal police earlier this week, as Goncalves, a transport-truck driver who lives in Kitchener, made his way through Quebec.
Goncalves says he has no choice: It’s the only way he can keep a close eye on the toddler at the end of a length of intravenous tubing and a bag of life-saving solution.
“I’ll tell you, life has been so miserable,” Goncalves said Tuesday after carefully dressing a shunt that drains liquid from the brain of his constant passenger — his two-year-old son, Pauly. Pauly was born with hydrocephalus, an accumulation of spinal fluid on the brain. Doctors recently removed a brain cyst. In his short life, Pauly has had five brain operations.’
‘Inspired by a Facebook page, kids in Vancouver spent a day kicking and punching redheads for fun, the Vancouver Sun reports. Trouble is, being hit hurts. “I was amazed by the amount of people that kicked me,” said 13-year-old Aaron Mishkin, who figures he was assaulted about 80 times. An online group promoting “Kick a Ginger” day started it all.
The group’s 14-year-old creator, who based the page on a South Park episode, apologized and said it was intended as a joke. But after students went home with injuries and 20 kids were suspended at one middle school, the RCMP is investigating the group, saying it may have spurred a hate crime. “It’s really unprecedented,” one cyber-bullying expert said.’
There are a few stories of Thomas Edison’s adventures. Science was extremely dodgy in the past. 🙂 For example:
“I had read in a scientific paper the method of making nitroglycerine, and was so fired by the wonderful properties it was said to possess, that I determined to make some of the compound. We tested what we considered a very small quantity, but this produced such terrible and unexpected results that we became alarmed, the fact dawning upon us that we had a very large white elephant in our possession. At 6 A.M. I put the explosive into a sarsaparilla bottle, tied a string to it, wrapped it in a paper, and gently let it down into the sewer, corner of State and Washington Streets.”
‘Facecunt is an anti-social utility that connects you with cunts around you.
Any cunt Can Join’
‘Astronauts aboard the ISS can add one more mission to their list: locate a spider that has disappeared.
When Space Shuttle Endeavour took off from Kennedy Space Center this month, the crew carried two spiders with them.
The spiders were sent in an enclosed box for a school science program. Students want to know if spiders can survive and make webs in space, but now only one spider can be seen in the container.
NASA isn’t sure where the spider could have gone.’
Itsy bitsy spider went up the spout.. Down came the rain and washed him out.
(5.2meg Flash video)
see it here »
‘A manhunt is under way in western Germany for a convicted drug dealer who escaped by mailing himself out of jail.
The 42-year-old Turkish citizen – who was serving a seven-year sentence – had been making stationery with other prisoners destined for the shops.
At the end of his shift, the inmate climbed into a cardboard box and was taken out of prison by express courier. His whereabouts are still unknown.
The chief warden of the jail told the BBC this was an embarrassing incident.’
‘As opposition grows against the Government’s controversial plan to censor the internet, the head of one of Australia’s largest ISPs has labelled the Communications Minister the worst we’ve had in the past 15 years. [..]
Michael Malone, managing director iiNet, said he would sign up to be involved in the “ridiculous” trials, which are scheduled to commence by December 24 this year. [..]
But Malone’s main purpose was to provide the Government with “hard numbers” demonstrating “how stupid it is” – specifically that the filtering system would not work, would be patently simple to bypass, would not filter peer-to-peer traffic and would significantly degrade network speeds.
“They’re not listening to the experts, they’re not listening to the industry, they’re not listening to consumers, so perhaps some hard numbers will actually help,” he said.’
‘A baby from Oregon who disappeared from her bed was found safe several hours later under the floorboards of her grandparents’ home.
Kate Higgins, 1, vanished from her bedroom in Woodburn, Ore., late Sunday night, according to KPTV-TV, the FOX affiliate in Portland, Ore.
Her father, Lawrence Higgins Jr., told police he fell asleep in a room at his parents’ house at about 10:30 p.m. with Kate and his two other children, ages 5 and 3. He awoke at around 5 a.m. to discover Kate had disappeared, the station said.
“We were like, ‘She couldn’t have went anywhere. She can’t walk,'” Kate’s uncle, Tim Higgins, told the station. “‘She’s gotta be here unless somebody came in and took her.'”‘
Anything but tranquilizing..
(2.2meg Flash video)
see it here »
‘Scientists have identified the single chance encounter about 1.9 billion years ago to which almost all life on Earth owes its existence.
It saw an amoeba-like organism engulf a bacterium that had developed the power to use sunlight to break down water and liberate oxygen.
The bacterium was probably intended as prey but instead it became incorporated into its attacker’s body – turning it into the ancestor of every tree, flowering plant and seaweed on Earth. The encounter meant life on the planet could evolve from bacterial slime into the more complex forms we see today. “That single event transformed the evolution of life on Earth,” said Paul Falkowski, professor of biogeochemistry and bio-physics at Rutgers University in New Jersey. “The descendants of that tiny organism transformed our atmosphere, filling it with the oxygen needed for animals and, eventually, humans to evolve.”’
‘Behavior of young children in a situation simulating entrapment in refrigerators was studied in order to develop standards for inside releasing devices, in accordance with Public Law 930 of the 84th Congress.
Using a specially designed enclosure, 201 children 2 to 5 years of age took part in tests in which six devices were used, including two developed in the course of this experiment as the result of observation of behavior.
Success in escaping was dependent on the device, a child’s age and size and his behavior. It was also influenced by the educational level of the parents, a higher rate of success being associated with fewer years of education attained by mother and father combined. Three major types of behavior were observed: (1) inaction, with no effort or only slight effort to get out (24%); (2) purposeful effort to escape (39%); (3) violent action both directed toward escape and undirected (37%).’
‘With a fox locked onto her arm, an Arizona jogger ran a mile to her car, where she was able to dislodge the animal, throw it into the trunk and drive to a Prescott hospital. The Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office said the fox, which later attacked an animal control officer, tested positive for rabies.
The unidentified Chino Valley resident told deputies she was on a trail Monday at the base of Granite Mountain when the fox attacked, biting her foot. The woman said she grabbed it by the neck when it went for her leg and it latched onto her arm.
Thinking the fox was rabid, she wanted to make sure it didn’t get away so she ran to her car, where she was able to pry open its jaws, wrap it in a sweat shirt and toss it into the trunk.
The woman is receiving rabies vaccinations, as is the animal control officer.’
‘The father of a family allegedly given a cup of gelato laced with human faeces at the Coogee Bay Hotel has reiterated his willingness to undertake a DNA test to prove he did not put it there himself, following the release of footage of the incident yesterday.
The footage, released by the hotel, appears to show Stephen Whyte leaving the table and heading towards the bathroom after the arrival of the gelato.
But Mr Whyte strenuously denied he had put his faeces into the dessert bowl yesterday. [..]
“It probably took me four minutes from putting it in my mouth and spitting it out from actually realising, ‘Oh my God, I just had shit in my mouth’,” Ms Whyte said. “I’m not going to stand down until I have public acknowledgement from the hotel that the incident happened.”‘
‘The Australian Federal Government is pushing forward with a plan to force Internet Service Providers [ISPs] to censor the Internet for all Australians. This plan will waste tens of millions of taxpayer dollars and slow down Internet access.
Despite being almost universally condemned by the public, ISPs, State Governments, Media and censorship experts, Communications Minister Stephen Conroy is determined to force this filter into your home.’
There are contact details for the fool behind this nonsense. If you’re annoy by all this, you should let them know.
‘Each one of us who posts on this blog is a Christ follower. We all believe that God came down from heaven and was born of the virgin Mary…his name was Jesus; he walked this Earth performing signs and miracles, but mostly trying to get man to see the love that God had for him. He was crucified, died and buried. [..]
We are women with excessive sexual desire for our husbands! There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. In fact, God wants us to be madly in love with our husbands. He wants us to keep that fire burning in our marriage beds! We have the Song of Solomon as a perfect example of a Christ honored union where the two people are obviously intoxicated with each other.’
‘As his father raised his camera, an 8-year-old boy aimed an Uzi at a pumpkin set up at a shooting event. Before his father could focus, the third-grader from Connecticut squeezed the trigger, and the high-powered weapon recoiled and fatally shot the boy in the head.
The death of Christopher Bizilj at the Westfield Sportsman’s Club Sunday has raised questions about how someone so young could be allowed to shoot an automatic weapon, which can fire hundreds of rounds in a minute. [..]
State Representative Michael Costello, the Newburyport Democrat who co-chairs the Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security, said yesterday that he plans to draft a bill that would ban anyone younger than age 21 from firing an automatic weapon.
“This isn’t a knee-jerk reaction; it’s a common sense reaction,” he said. “We should take swift action to provide some reasonable restrictions on this type of unreasonable practice. It’s almost indescribable that within a year of leaving a booster seat, an 8-year-old can be holding a submachine gun.”‘
‘The clergyman, in his 50s, told nurses he had been hanging curtains when he fell backwards on to his kitchen table.
He happened to be nude at the time of the mishap, said the vicar, who insisted he had not been playing a sex game.
The vicar had to undergo a delicate operation to extract the vegetable, one of a range of odd items medics in Sheffield have had to remove from people’s backsides or genitals.
Others include a can of deodorant, a cucumber, a Russian doll – and a carnation.’
‘German traffic police have been left looking like proper muppets by a British prankster.
An Audi TT with British registration plates has been repeatedly caught speeding on roads in the Bavarian city of Bayreuth.
But because continental speed cameras are set up for left-hand drive vehicles, the cameras keep missing the driver’s face.
Instead, they keep capturing clear views of a manic Muppet-like toy which the cheeky Brit has propped up on his passenger seat.
But police admit they are even baffled about the identity of the muppet.’