Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Amazing Photograph!

A friend just sent me this photograph. This is absolutely the BEST in “high definition” ... Zoom in (double-click an area) ... and watch it focus. Then zoom some more ... and wait for it to focus. Or, you can use the focusing tool on the upper left side of the screen to zoom in and out, and scan across the photo with the directional arrows at the top left of the page. Or, just grab it somewhere on the photo and move your mouse across the page.

What a surveillance tool this is!

This picture was taken with a robotic camera and weighs in at 1,474 megapixel. (295 times the standard 5 megapixel camera). It was a Canon that pulled together over 200 individual shots. Each zoom in takes a second to focus ... and then you can see some amazing reactions. You can even read the Everest & Jennings logo on Dick Cheney's wheelchair!

I'll give you bonus points if you find Yo-Yo Ma taking a picture with his iPhone.

I look forward to your comments.



Saturday, January 24, 2009

Stem Cell Research Is Finally Going To Begin

It's finally going to happen — the first human experimentation with stem cells and human beings! This is VERY exciting news for not only yours truly, but for hundreds of thousands of spinal cord injured people and the people who know and care about us!

According to this article on, Dr. Glen House, co-founder of and himself a paraplegic, “This is the news we’ve been waiting for, and the world will be watching with great anticipation and hope. We may someday look back on this study as the genesis of a cure for not just SCI, but also for other types of neurological impairments."

You can read the entire article by clicking here.

Needless to say, I am pumped! I have been waiting a long time to see the first trials and am very anxious to see what becomes of this initial experiment.

I'll keep you informed.

By the way, this is an incredibly informative website full of wonderful information. If you are interested in disability issues and have a little time, I encourage you to check out this site. It will be time well spent.

Please feel free to comment.



Saturday, January 17, 2009

Best Friends

A friend just sent me this video and I think it's worth sharing. It's an extraordinary piece about best friends. The best friends just happen to be a dog and an elephant.

Steve Hartman always does these wonderful stories on the CBS Evening News called Assignment America, and this is no exception. There is one scene that shows how trusting Bella is of Tara I find absolutely amazing!

Check it out and see what you think:

Watch CBS Videos Online

There's a lesson to be learned here. Wouldn't it be wonderful if humans could be as accepting, understanding and tolerant of our differences?

Speaking of tolerant, be forewarned, you have to sit through a commercial before the video plays. It seems there are fewer and fewer places we can go to avoid commercials. I guess they have to get to us somehow.

I welcome your comments.



Sunday, January 11, 2009

Thought Identification

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know I cover a wide range of subjects and I am a firm believer in lifelong learning and change. You also know I like the subjects 60 Minutes addresses and have posted pieces from them on a number of occasions. Well, they had another exceptional piece last Sunday on a potentially very controversial subject neuroscientist Marcel Just refers to as "thought identification" which is basically what I discussed in my November 2, 2008 post entitled Imagine.

The difference in this segment and the Imagine piece is the application of the new technology. Dr. Just is just one scientist who is working on the technology that will allow us to determine what a person is thinking. Yes, you read it right. They are working on the technology to be able to tell what someone is thinking and it is advancing at a "stunning rate."

The implication for the new technology is incredible when we think about its application in the field of criminal investigations, getting information from potential terrorists, talking to employees about something in a business setting, getting information from your teenager, ... and the list goes on and on.

The application I find absolutely intriguing is the possible uses it has for people with disabilities, especially someone who cannot talk because of an injury, birth defect, disease, or any one of a number of disabling conditions. The possibilities are endless and the following video didn't even address disabilities.

One thing I found very interesting was the Comments section on the CBS News website following the transcript and video. There are obviously differing opinions about the entire idea of what some people might do with the technology. You can read the comments by clicking here.

If you haven't already seen the piece, I encourage you to watch Lesley Stahl's January 4th piece here:

I look forward to your comments.



Monday, January 5, 2009

Obama's Disability Plan

Welcome to 2009 and a new beginning in many ways. It's very exciting for me to see what the new administration is planning to do for people with disabilities. There is a good video on the Barack Obama website about his plan. It is obviously several months old because it looks like a campaign ad. Having said that, he has some great ideas to help the disability community. You can view it by clicking here.

The website also has this statement:

In addition to reclaiming America's global leadership on this issue by becoming a signatory to — and having the Senate ratify — the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the plan has four parts, designed to provide lifelong supports and resources to Americans with disabilities. They are as follows:

First, provide Americans with disabilities with the educational opportunities they need to succeed.

Second, end discrimination and promote equal opportunity.

Third, increase the employment rate of workers with disabilities.

And fourth, support independent, community-based living for Americans with disabilities.

It was obviously shot before September 25, 2008 when the ADA was amended. You can read a brief synopsis of the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 on the EEOC's site by clicking here.

Any comments?