Saturday, October 30, 2010

atomic no 64 - Gd

Since I saw a funtional stirling engine recently, I made the mistake of entering the search term "perpetual motion" on

Then I lost an hour of my life looking at videos claiming to make perpetual motion engines out of natural magnets. These videos fascinate me because I presume they are all fake.

It seems to me that if any of these devices worked I wouldn't have to hunt around on youtube to find them. I'd already have one in my dad's garage charging his electric car.

So what is up with these videos?

One theory is that all of the inventors started out seriously trying to build perpetual motion machines, realized at some point they couldn't do it, and decided to salvage something out of the effort by making fake videos and getting some attention.

Another theory is that the so-called inventors never intended to do anything but create fake videos. But it sure seems like a lot of work for that. That option seems unlikely to me.

Lastly, we must entertain the possibility that the laws of physics have some sort of loophole, inventors sometimes find it, and the big corporations send around hit men every time it happens. That's why you never see the invention beyond or some local news show. But that seems unlikely too. So it remains a mystery.

As I was googling around on this topic, I discovered that there is an element called gadolinium (Gd) that is attracted to magnets up to about room temperature, then it abruptly loses its attraction.

It seems to me you could build a generator using that principle. All you need is an external source of heat, and not much of it, to power the thing.

A natural magnet could attract the gadolinium, which creates some mechanical energy, and some portion of that energy could be used to introduce heat from the outside that makes the gadolinium non-magnetic and puts the device back to its original position.

Some of that energy from the return trip would turn off the outside heat source and the process repeats forever. It would only operate at about room temperature, but that's still pretty nifty.

The inside of my house, for example, is always at about room temperature, so there is no shortage of that environment.

Yeah, I know, someone probably already invented it.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Pre-historic Kalmadi does it once more...

Noted Egyptologist Dr Hammerschmidst has claimed that a pre-historic equivalent of the Commonwealth Organizing Committee chief Suresh Kalmadi had managed to stall the construction of pyramids in 2750 BC

This startling claim was made in a book written by him called ‘Dummy mummies’ launched at a well-attended function in New York last week.

The book lists out a series of incidents that happened when the Egyptians were constructing the first set of pyramids. Amranakhalmadee, the corrupt Senior Supervisor of the pyramid project spent money by the donkey loads and missed many deadlines before his luck finally ran out.
“The domestic media of those days, represented by heavy limestone tablets came down heavily on Amranakhalmadee following which he lost the blessings of the royal family, soon enough. That is before he met with a gory end,” Hammerschmidst said.

According to Hammerschmidst, Amranakhalmadee swindled money, cut corners by using sub standard construction material and extended projects indefinitely to mint more money.

In the end, a publication published on red algae from an area now in Saudi Arabia took up the issue, causing much embarrassment to the Egyptian royal family. The domestic media took the cue and launched a relentless campaign for removing Amranakhalmadee.

Amranakhalmadee was then summoned by the family and banished to one of the pyramids under construction at that point of time He was supposed to spend the rest of his life there in solitary confinement as a punishment for his crimes.

But fate had other plans, as Amranakhalmadee died the very next day, when the ceiling of the poorly constructed pyramid collapsed on him, while he was shaving. Spin doctors of the royal family then took over and ensured that all references to the Egyptian pre-historic Kalmadi were removed.

"This should serve as a warning to all the Kalmadis out there who are out to make a fast buck by trading national pride for millions. Such guys will meet the same fate as Amranakhalmadee and there are no two ways about it", Hammerschmidst said.

Egyptian government has banned the sale of the book and is considering legal action against Hammerschmidst for making 'unsubstantiated claims' in his book.

"Comparing the supervisors of ancient Egypt with Kalmadi is downright disgraceful, depressing, demeaning and mortifying and I am stopping here since I have run out of synonyms.

There was no such character in our country at any point of time in history and the story that we have heard in the press and in blogs about Amranakhalmadee is a figment of the author's imagination.

His story is as real as Pakistan's commitment to the war on terror," a senior Egyptian diplomat in New Delhi told Humor Unplugged over a Skype chat.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Tired of not knowing what kinds of foods to eat? Not sure how much fat, calories and sodium you should be consuming everyday? All the tips you need are here....

In addition to regular exercise, you'll also want to add some fat burning foods to your diet to help trim your waistline.

Foods that are high in protein and fibre are the best kinds of food to eat if you want to burn fat around your middle.

Did you know that it takes more energy to digest protein than it does to digest fat? So the more protein you eat, the more calories your body burns.

Eggs are super high in protein and can help you burn that unwanted belly fat. They contain the vitamin B12 – a great supplement for breaking down fat cells.

You may have heard all the warnings about eggs and your health. That's because a couple of eggs will put you over the recommended daily amount of cholesterol.

Well, more recent studies have shown that dietary cholesterol has a minimal impact on blood cholesterol. Dietary fat is the real culprit. It's what raises your bad cholesterol levels.

However, if you're still worried about your overall cholesterol intake from eating too many eggs, you can remove the yolk and still benefit from the high protein contained in eggs.

Low fat dairy products
According to an article in Obesity Research, women who ate low-fat dairy products, such as nonfat yogurt and low-fat milk, three to four times a day, lost 70 per cent more fat than low-dairy dieters.

In another study done at Purdue University those who consumed 3 cups of fat-free milk gained less weight over the course of 2 years than those on low calcium diets.

So, not only do dairy products help you strengthen your bones, they can also play an essential role in burning that unwanted body fat.

If you are a regular consumer of milk and other dairy products, that's great, just watch your proportions and perhaps switch over to the low or no fat varieties.

While beans are often associated with the gastrointestinal disturbances they may cause, they are also very good sources of protein, fibre and iron.

Some of the best kinds of beans to eat are:
- Navy beans
- White beans
- Kidney beans
- Lima beans

And as always, limit baked and refried beans in your diet as refried beans contain tons of saturated fat, while baked beans are usually loaded in sugar. Sure, you'll be getting your protein but you'll also be consuming a lot of fat and sugar that you don't need.

Here's something else to remember. Be sure to cook your beans thoroughly because our digestive tracks are not adapted to breaking down some proteins that are contained in certain beans.

Tip: A vegetable called Edamame (pronounced ed-uh-ma-may) – an organic soybean in a pod often served at Japanese restaurants.

All you do is boil them for three minutes, add a pinch of salt and eat the soybeans out of the pods. They are surprisingly tasty and very good for you. One serving contains 10 grams of soy protein. The best place to find them is at a store that sells organic foods.

While it may not be the tastiest thing you can eat, oatmeal definitely has some great nutritional qualities.

You may have noticed that many of the oatmeal brands are now boasting that eating more oatmeal will help lower your cholesterol level. That's because oatmeal is loaded with soluble fibre which helps reduce blood cholesterol by flushing those bad digestive acids out of your system.

The best kind of oatmeal to eat is unsweetened and unflavoured. While it's tempting to select the apples and cinnamon flavour and load it with butter and sugar – you really lose out on all the health benefits. If you must sweeten your bowl of oatmeal, do so by adding fruit.

Or add a spoonful of honey (much better for you than sugar) and a handful of raisins or dried cranberries.

Oatmeal is also beneficial in fighting colon cancer and heart disease.

Olive oil
Certain fats are good for you and your body needs them. Olive oil is one of those 'good fats'. In fact, it's so good that it helps you burn fat and keeps your cholesterol down.

Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fat, a type of fat that researchers are finding provide outstanding health benefits. One ounce of extra virgin olive oil contains about 85 per cent of the daily value for monounsaturated fat.

So instead of taking a swig of orange juice in the morning, many dieters are picking up a bottle of extra virgin olive oil.

Whole grains
These days everyone seems to be screaming "No carbs!" It's as if the world has gone no-carb crazy and everyone is running from sliced breads and pastas.

Well the truth is, your body needs carbohydrates. If you go without them completely your body will start to crave them. So it's not a good idea to exclude all carbs because the right kinds are actually good for you.

It's the processed carbohydrates that are bad for you – the white breads, bagels, pastas, and white rice to name a few.

The above foods have all been processed, thus stripping out all the nutrients leaving you with loads of starch.

The key is to eat 'whole grain' foods because they haven't been processed and contain the fiber and minerals your body needs.

So don't be fooled by a loaf of bread labeled 'wheat'. Regular wheat bread is still lacking in vitamins and minerals. Manufacturers add molasses to it so it turns brown.

Don't let them trick you. The only kind of bread that's good for you is the kind that's labeled 'whole grain'.

Meat and fish
Turkey and beef are great for building muscle and boosting the immune system, but as always you have to be careful as:

Basted turkeys are usually injected with fatty substances while beef contains saturated fat. If you are going to eat beef, be sure to consume the leanest cuts you can find by looking for 'loin' or 'round' on the labels.

Salmon and tuna are also good sources of protein. They both contain omega-3 fatty acids which may sound bad, but are actually healthy fats. These two foods are also good for giving your immune system a nice boost and should be consumed at least thrice a week.