Drink up baby

Scottish scientists are now saying that fizzy drinks can help improve your memory. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the experts believe “consuming the equivalent of two cans of soft drink can boost memory retention by a fifth and combat dementia in older people”.

They believe that as a result of this increased memory retention “people studying for exams could benefit”.

It was determined that drinking 25g of sugar in orange-flavoured water (about the same as a can of Coca-Cola) increased word memory by 11% and drinking double that amount would result in a 17% improvement.

Googles End of Year Analysis

Coming to the end of 2005 Google have released information about the top searches made this year. For a more detailed analysis visit “2005 Year-End Google Zeitgeist“.

Top 10 searches:
1. Janet Jackson
2. Hurricane Katrina
3. tsunami
4. xbox 360
5. Brad Pitt
6. Michael Jackson
7. American Idol
8. Bristney Spears
9. Angelina Jolie
10. Harry Potter

The Hundredth Man + The Death Collectors

If you’re looking for a good read I suggest two books by Jack Kerley, The Hundredth Man and The Death Collectors. Jack Kerley debuted as an author with The Hundredth Man and then continued his epic tale with the sequel The Death Collectors, living up to his first novel.

The Hundredth Man is a “psychotic-killer-with-a-horrendous-childhood thriller” (Publishers Weekly) which follows the story of lead character Carson Ryder, a young detective who has a troubled past and is apart of the newly formed two-man PSIT (Psychopathological and Sociopathological Investigative Team) unit, or referred to as Piss-it by fellow detectives, partnered with Harry Nautilus. The story follows the two through Piss-its very first case, finding a killer who leaves his victims headless, and also follows Ryder through his past and his confrontations with his brother who gives Ryder clues from an asylum which he resides.

The Death Collectors continues the epic tale of Carson Ryder and Harry Nautilus. This time the Piss-its team are investigating the bizarre murder of a naked female buried beneath flowers and surrounded by candles in a cheap motel. Even more dauntingly as the case progresses they end up chasing after a dead serial killer Marsden Hex Camp, who had been killed many years before in a courtroom, and on their investigation they are involved in the collection and selling of murder memorabilia.

Wireless

I don’t think that you actually appreciate the benefits of having a wireless connection until you actually get one. Having always been on a wired network connection, first with a Coaxial cable and then with a more modern cat-5 cable, I have always been privileged of having extra storage space, shared internet connection, etc, etc, etc. However, it wasn’t until recently when I received my Sony Vaio VGN-S460 with built in wireless that I have actually come to appreciate the wireless technologies.

I have always been intrigued by the benefits of having a wireless connection, but was never really keen to change to a wireless connection because of the slower transfer rate (11/54Mbps as opposed to the 10/100/1000Mbps of wired network) and the actual expense that is involved in changing from the wired network to the wireless network. Although I still use the existing wired network for my desktop computer (simply because the transfer rate is much faster and it is already there) when I’m at uni, and hopefully when I’m at home soon, I use the wireless abilities of the laptop.

The great thing about having the laptop is that i no longer have to wait around for a computer, if I’m not near a free lab room. General if i want to use a computer at the university I will just head over to the Information Technology Library and wait in line for a spare computer, leaving me with only a few minutes to actually use the machine. Now with the laptop all I have to do is simply go near a wireless hotspot, connect to the network and I’m away. No more waiting, no more being restricted to using the software of the university machines and no more being restricted to the library or finding free computer labs.

Man builds up 30,000 volts of static electricity

Someone sent me a link to this article, originally posted by ABC News Australia.

Victorian authorities believe a man built up at least 30,000 volts of static electricity in his jacket simply by walking around the western Victorian city of Warrnambool yesterday.

The man left a trail of scorch marks and molten plastic behind him.

It was yesterday afternoon when Frank Clewer walked into a Warrnambool business and got his first shock.

“It sounded almost like a firecracker or something like that,” he said.

“It was at the reception area. Within say, around five minutes, the carpet started to erupt,” he said.

Burns the size of 10-cent pieces were left on the carpet where Mr Clewer had been standing.

The Country Fire Authority evacuated the building and those around it, fearing the power could cause larger electrical problems.

But Mr Clewer’s worries continued when he got back in his car.

“I actually scorched a piece of plastic I had on the floor of the car,” he said.

Scientist Karl Kruszelnicki says it is likely the electrical build-up was caused by a number of factors, such as the synthetic clothes the man was wearing.

“This poor guy has built up static electricity thanks to an unfortunate combination of insulating clothes that he’s wearing, static, synthetic clothes, just walking along and he’s just building up this static charge everywhere,” Dr Kruszelnicki said.

“I’ve read of it but I’ve never heard of it here in Australia.”

The CFA has Mr Clewer’s jacket and says it is continuing to give off voltage.

Link: Web2Messenger

Web2Messenger.com is a brand-new service that allows people to send you messages from the web to MSN Messenger. You can redirect people to your personal Send Message page, or create your own Send Message page on your blog or personal website. You can even send a member a message when he or she is offline – your message will be delivered as soon as the recipient gets online!

Currently in its beta stage, web2messenger, is only available by invite. I managed to get my hands on an invite and have been checking the new service out, soon there will be a page where you can send me msn messenger from this site, without having to be logged in to msn, or even having an account. What’s also great about this service is that it allows messages to be sent even when you are offline, it just stores them in their database and sends them when you come back online, you can also check your messages on their website, with details such as the sender, time and the actual message.

Optimus Keyboard

I never thought i could be amazed over a keyboard, but i am. Designer Artemy Lebedev has been creating – along with Timur Burbayev, Alexey Zalata, Nikolai Vershinin and Anna Ponomaryova – a new keyboard, called Optimus. The Optimus keyboard does not only look nice and smooth, but “every key of the Optimus keyboard is a stand-alone display showing exactly what it is controlling at this very moment”!

Link: Yummy! Alpha

Yummy! Alpha is a great resource for all your document needs, in pdf format. Yummy! Alpha is a library of pdf files – submitted by users – which are free to download. The pdfs are sorted into categories, and you can generate a RSS feed for each category or for the popular pdfs. If you register with Yummy! you can also upload your own pdf documents and create your own ‘library’ where you can store your favourite pdfs for later usage. Goto Yummy! Alpha now.

Link: Digg

Digg.com. Lots of links to the latest technology based news articles around the web. Also supplies RSS feeds for each category, or all.