Meow: cat update

IMG_5004Today I’m doing my part to fill up the internet with pictures of cats. After years of cat allergy, months of allergy shots, and lots of lobbying on the part of both kids, we got a cat last month. She is 4 years old, and she came with the name Sadie, which fits her, so we’re keeping it. She is part tabby and part Siamese. We’ve had her for almost a month now, and she is settling into her new home. The UULent word for today is home.

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Image of the Week: Lighting up brain cancer

In honor of Brain Awareness Week, I am reblogging this article from the Wellcome Trust blog about ‘tumour paint,’ an experimental drug that literally lights up brain cancer, making it easier for surgeons to cut out more of a tumor while leaving normal tissue undamaged. You can read more about this linked story ‘Light at the end of the scalpel’.

Wellcome Trust Blog

Brain-animation-gif Peta Bell and Grzegorz Krzeszowiec

This week’s image comes from Mosaic, the Wellcome Trust’s online magazine dedicated to exploring the science of life, which this week celebrates two years since its launch.

Launched in 2014, Mosaic publishes a compelling in-depth story every week about the people, ideas and trends that drive biology and medicine and affect our lives, health and society. It’s also open access: all Mosaic’s articles can be reproduced and distributed for free under a Creative Commons licence, and they appear frequently in media all over the world.

To mark their second birthday, Mosaic has teamed up with popular London literary event 5×15 to present Reports from the Future of Medicine, an evening of stories, inspiration and entertainment. The event will take place on Wednesday 16 May 2016 at 7pm at Conway Hall in London.

Join Mosaic and hear from five of their writers on…

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Mundane Monday: Happy Pi Day!

IMG_4990I have several geeky T-shirts. One has the first page of the score from Beethoven’s Eroica on it. Another shows a brain lifting weights. Yet another, pictured above and at left, celebrates “pi day,” March 14, (3.14), which also happens to be Einstein’s birthday.

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Belated Mundane Monday: Bermuda Buttercup

Pho Trablogger has a weekly challenge asking people to photograph the beauty in mundane, everyday things. Entrants have the rest of the week to enter, until the following Monday.

This type of challenge appeals to me. I have to say, this theme–mundane, everyday objects–describes most of my photography. I never expected that having an iPhone camera would result in my taking as many pictures as I do. I still remember film cameras–heck, I still remember Polaroid cameras. I have some pictures from those, and even posted scans of them for another challenge.

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Beethoven for the Bucket List

My musical life since moving to CA has been a little “all over the place.” So far I’ve taken this year to sample different orchestras and different instruments. Do I want to play violin, viola, or both? Which orchestra has the best fit for me with respect to rehearsal venue, concert venue, conductor, repertoire, and community?

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Geocaching Intro App for iPhone: A How To Guide

This is a great guide to using the iPhone app for geocaching from Sarah at The Geocaching Junkie. I have gotten much better at keeping up with logging since I started using an app!

The Geocaching Junkie

TheGeocaching Intro App is free to download on the App Store. There is a paid version of the app, but this is no longer being developed by Groundspeak, so hopefullythe Intro App will eventually contain all the features of the paid app (and more!).

The following post goes through all the features of the Intro App and will hopefully show you how tooptimise it for your geocaching needs.

Getting Started

If you search for ‘geocaching’ in the App Store, one of the first, if notthe first result returned is’Geocaching Intro’. Once you have downloaded the app, you need to log in using your username and password. If you don’t have one yet, the app gives you the option to sign up or to connect with Facebook.

iphone app collage

If you are using the Intro App and you do not have a premium member account, you will not be able to…

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Book Review: The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks, by Jeanne Theoharis

The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa ParksThe Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks by Jeanne Theoharis

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I would give this book 5 stars on content, 3 based on the writing style. The author had unprecedented access to Rosa Parks’ writings and records and provides a comprehensive view of her life and her role in the Civil Rights movement and later in Detroit as a member of the staff of Michigan Congressman John Conyers. Continue reading Book Review: The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks, by Jeanne Theoharis

Music as Magic (Learning by Ear—Part I)

First in a series of blogs about my attempts to learn how to play by ear on the violin . . .

Back in the 1970s, when I started learning violin in public school, the first piece we learned for performance was Twinkle, and we played it in that year’s Holiday Concert. Before the group performance, a few of us had lines to say. My line went something like this:

“Thousands of years ago, people used music as magic . . . (lost in the mists of time) . . . played different kinds of instruments.”

I don’t remember much else from this concert: just this small part of my lines, and none of the actual experience of playing Twinkle with a group of 4th grade public school beginners in front of an audience.

Continue reading Music as Magic (Learning by Ear—Part I)

The Brain—is wider than the Sky

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