Gongol.com Archives: May 2006
Brian Gongol

Health (2006.05.19)
In case of pandemic flu, close the schools
Computer simulation suggests that nationwide school cancellations ahead of a pandemic flu outbreak would reduce peak infections by 40%. Eventually, about the same number of people would get the flu as would have otherwise, but by reducing the peak load, the health-care system would have a better chance at managing the situation. Border closures and travel restrictions would be unlikely to help much.

The United States of America (2006.05.19)
CIA Director nominee gives off moderately unnerving vibe
Testifies to Congress: "CIA officers . . . deserve recognition of their efforts, and they also deserve not to have every action analyzed, second-guessed and criticized on the front pages of the morning paper." On one hand, he's right; sometimes the scrutiny may be overheated. But on the other hand, the people asking the questions are taxpayers -- both the people paying the bills for what the CIA does and the people the agency is commissioned to protect. So if they're subject to some scrutiny, that's how the game is played in an open society...which is the ultimate "core value" of the USA, as Gen. Hayden likes to put it.

Computers and the Internet (2006.05.19)
MySpace users need to behave themselves
The obsession with getting something for nothing means that people are downloading software that supposedly helps them track who's looking at their profiles, but they're just getting lots of adware instead

Computers and the Internet (2006.05.19)
Symantec accuses Microsoft of patent infringement, sues to halt Vista
Vista incorporates elements of a program that used to belong to a company that Symantec purchased. Whether it will halt the next Windows OS is unclear, but a similar dispute caused all kinds of havoc for BlackBerry users.

Iowa (2006.05.19)
Iowa Democratic candidates for governor talk about growth but promise more intervention
State intervention is all the rage, but it doesn't really help. Iowa deserves more from its candidates for governor.

Socialism Doesn't Work (2006.05.19)
Louisiana legislators declare they have nothing better to do than regulate video games
One might suspect that with the state's largest city still in massive disrepair and a considerable portion of its people still in exodus, perhaps the Louisiana state legislature should be doing something more valuable with the taxpayers' money than trying to regulate the content of video games

Health (2006.05.19)
Men of the world: Give your women some stress during pregnancy. Do it for the children.
Study of 137 women says that mild maternal stress during pregnancy actually correlates favorably with childhood development through the first two years. So, ladies, when the men head out with the boys and come home drunk to burn pizzas in the oven and jam on the air guitar to Bon Jovi CDs, they're just doing it for the kids.

Threats and Hazards (2006.05.19)
British colonel: Pakistan is helping Taliban attack Western troops

Water news: Water Works Park to host kids' fishing derby
Graphics: Ride the Wave