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Anti-Ebola Drug ZMapp Makes Clean Sweep: 18 of 18 Monkeys Survive Infection

Slashdot -

Scientific American reports, based on a study published today in Nature, that ZMapp, the drug that has been used to treat seven patients during the current Ebola epidemic in West Africa, can completely protect monkeys against the virus, research has found. ... The drug — a cocktail of three purified immune proteins, or monoclonal antibodies, that target the Ebola virus — has been given to seven people: two US and three African health-care workers, a British nurse and a Spanish priest. The priest and a Liberian health-care worker who got the drug have since died. There is no way to tell whether ZMapp has been effective in the patients who survived, because they received the drug at different times during the course of their disease and received various levels of medical care. NPR also has an interview with study lead Gary Kobinger, who says that (very cautious) human trials are in the works, and emphasizes the difficulites of producing the drug in quantity.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Friday fun: make a paradox card

Boing Boing -

The amusement I get from looking at this weird-looking card is worth more than the 60 seconds it took me to make it. No tape, glue, or hidden cuts are needed. If you can't figure out how to make one, someone in the comments will show you how to do it.

Plane Shootdowns in the Propaganda System

Socialism OnLine! -

URL: http://zcomm.org/zmagazine/plane-shootdowns-in-the-propaganda-system/

Plane Shootdowns in the Propaganda System. "The U.S. media treatment of the destruction of the civilian airliner Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, effectively blamed on the East Ukraine “separatists” and especially Putin and Russia, follows a long-established pattern of rapid and indignant acceptance of politically serviceable official claims, despite a long record of official deception on such matters. When we contrast this with the media’s handling of cases where the U.S. or Israel have shot down civilian planes, the contrast and double standard are dramatic and even grotesque."

"My old favorite is the Soviet shooting down of Korean airliner KAL-007 on August 31, 1983. This was a period in which the Reagan administration was in the midst of a major arms buildup and associated assailing of the “evil empire.” As with the assassination attempt on the Pope in 1981, this event was welcomed as an outstanding propaganda opportunity, and administration denunciations of the Soviet Union were fast and furious. The plane was far off course and flying over Soviet space and near Soviet naval facilities, and it failed to respond to radio challenges from a Soviet fighter plane. A good case has been made that it was on a military mission as well as transporting civilian passengers (P.Q. Mann, “Reassessing the Sakhalin Incident,” Defense Attache, June 1994; David Pearson, “K.A.L. 007,” the Nation, August 25, 1984). The Reagan administration claimed that the Soviets had deliberately shot down a civilian airliner, although it was known from the radio message intercepts—edited for the media to sustain the propaganda lie—that the Soviets had not identified it as a civilian aircraft..."

Topic(s): Geography:  Vote Up/Down

Islamic State "Laptop of Doom" Hints At Plots Including Bubonic Plague

Slashdot -

Foreign Policy has an in-depth look at the contents of a laptop reportedly seized this year in Syria from a stronghold of the organization now known as the Islamic State, and described as belonging to a Tunisian national ("Muhammed S."). The "hidden documents" folder of the machine, says the report, contained a vast number of documents, including ones describing and justifying biological weapons: The laptop's contents turn out to be a treasure trove of documents that provide ideological justifications for jihadi organizations -- and practical training on how to carry out the Islamic State's deadly campaigns. They include videos of Osama bin Laden, manuals on how to make bombs, instructions for stealing cars, and lessons on how to use disguises in order to avoid getting arrested while traveling from one jihadi hot spot to another. ... The information on the laptop makes clear that its owner is a Tunisian national named Muhammed S. who joined ISIS in Syria and who studied chemistry and physics at two universities in Tunisia's northeast. Even more disturbing is how he planned to use that education: The ISIS laptop contains a 19-page document in Arabic on how to develop biological weapons and how to weaponize the bubonic plague from infected animals. ... "The advantage of biological weapons is that they do not cost a lot of money, while the human casualties can be huge," the document states.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Did Red Hat’s CTO Walk – Or Was He Pushed?

LXer -

It’s hard to believe the official story coming out of Raleigh, that CTO Brian Stevens abruptly resigned his position at Red Hat on Wednesday “to pursue another opportunity.” The company is being mainly mum on the subject, only offering a terse three sentence announcement on their website.

Ask Slashdot: What Old Technology Can't You Give Up?

Slashdot -

An anonymous reader writes: It's the year 2014, and I still have a floppy drive installed on my computer. I don't know why; I don't own any floppy disks, and I haven't used one in probably a decade. But every time I put together a PC, it feels incomplete if I don't have one. I also have a Laserdisc player collecting dust at the bottom of my entertainment center, and I still use IRC to talk to a few friends. Software, hardware, or otherwise, what technology have you had a hard time letting go? (I don't want to put a hard limit on age, so you folks using flip-phones or playing on Dreamcasts or still inexplicably coding in Perl 4, feel free to contribute.)

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Study: Social Networks Have Negative Effect On Individual Welfare

Slashdot -

An anonymous reader writes: A study of 50,000 people in Italy has found the impact of social networking on individual welfare to be "significantly negative." The researchers found that improvements in self-reported well-being occurred when online networking led to face-to-face interactions, but this effect was overwhelmed by the perceived losses in well-being (PDF) generated by interaction strictly through social networks. The researchers "highlight the role of discrimination and hate speech on social media which they say play a significant role in trust and well-being. Better moderation could significantly improve the well-being of the people who use social networks, they conclude."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.


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