Problem – Sperm Donor With Bad Genes

A Dutch sperm donor who fathered 18 children is suffering from a rare hereditary degenerative brain disorder, a hospital said on Wednesday.

The man, whose sperm was used between 1989 and 1995, was not definitively diagnosed with cerebellar ataxia — which causes gradual shriveling of the cerebellum — until late 1998.
The children conceived from his sperm, now aged between seven and 13, have a 50 percent chance of inheriting the disease, according to the hospital, which agonized for three years before deciding to tell the parents involved.
Continue reading… “Problem – Sperm Donor With Bad Genes”


Smithsonian to Enshrine Enron Ethics Manual

Enron has turned into a museum quality scandal — the Smithsonian Institution is collecting its memorabilia, including its code of ethics.

A spokeswoman for the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History on Tuesday said curators have started to collect Enron memorabilia as part of an effort to record one of the nation’s biggest business scandals.

Continue reading… “Smithsonian to Enshrine Enron Ethics Manual”


Historical Note – Richard Phillips Feynman – One of the Space People

Born: May 11, 1918, NewYork, USA
Died: February 15, 1988, Los Angeles, USA

Richard Feynman was one of the greatest theoretical physicists of his generation. He developed pictorial representations of space-time behavioural probabilities of particle interactions, now known as Feynman diagrams and worked out how to combine quantum ideas with electromagnetic theory. More about the other Space People here.
Continue reading… “Historical Note – Richard Phillips Feynman – One of the Space People”


Can Robots Fell Emotions Like Humans?

Jeffrey Johnson writes, “Robots increasingly look and act like human beings. This leads to the inevitable question of whether robots could ever feel emotions like human beings.

In recent years there has been a great research effort to produce humanoid walking robots. The many examples include SDR-3X produced by Sony, ASIMO produced by Honda, and H6 produced at the University of Tokyo.”

Continue reading… “Can Robots Fell Emotions Like Humans?”


Operation on Fetus’s Heart Valve Called a ‘Science Fiction’ Success

Doctors at Boston’s Children’s Hospital have, for the first time in the United States, corrected a
deadly heart defect in a fetus. The baby, Jack, was born six weeks
early and doctors were expecting to have to widen a narrowed valve in
his heart again after his birth. But Jack did not need their help. His
aortic valve, though a bit narrow, was wide enough to do its job, and
the chambers of his heart looked healthy. Doctors were not sure the
valve would stay open after the in-utero surgery months earlier.

Continue reading… “Operation on Fetus’s Heart Valve Called a ‘Science Fiction’ Success”


Search Engine Statistics

Search Engine Watch: How many searches are performed each day? Here’s a look at available figures, gathered from industry press releases or interviews.

Google – 130 million – 10/01 –
(About half of these are at and the rest generated through partner sites such as Yahoo and Netscape Search)

Inktomi – 80 million – 8/01 –
(as per various public statements)

AltaVista – 50 million – 3/00 –
(as cited by AltaVista in press release)

Direct Hit – 20 million – 4/01 –
(covers searches on or through distribution partners such as

FAST – 12 million – 10/00 –
(probably for the FAST site itself and doesn’t include partners)

Overture (GoTo) – 5 million – 4/00 –
(as reported by Overture to a reader, who forwarded the information to me. Includes queries through affiliates and partners).

Ask Jeeves – 4 million – 3/00

Continue reading… “Search Engine Statistics”


Daliworld – The World’s Largest Virtual Fish Network

A virtual fish network known as Daliworld aims to re-create the world’s oceans on thousands of interconnected PCs. Using a file-sharing technology similar to Napster, DALiWorld, lets you spawn digital fish that swim around your computer screen. And when they’ve had enough, the little devils swim right off your PC and onto the screen of another Daliworld user, who may be in Japan, Zaire, Argentina or any of the 47 other countries represented by the more than 30,000 people DALi says have downloaded the software.

Continue reading… “Daliworld – The World’s Largest Virtual Fish Network”



Meet the NeoPet, an addictive Web phenomenon spreading among children from Atlanta to Argentina. NeoPets require frequent attention from their owners, who must feed the critters, educate them, and keep them out of harm’s way.

Raising a NeoPet is a popular project. The 2-year-old, free site, originally created by British college students, has climbed to the top of game site rankings in recent months–with people spending more time on the site than at major competitors such as America Online.

Continue reading… “NeoPets”