Archive for March 1st, 2013
Now that women are allowed to serve in combat roles, Kristen Tsetsi thinks it’s logical that women also be required to register for Selective Service just like men; and face the same consequences if they don’t.
The Connecticut writer and feminist recently logged onto the Selective Service website to enter her name onto the draft rolls. As soon as she clicked “female” though, she was redirected to a page explaining that women do not register for the draft.
Tsetsi does not accept that.
“Not only should we be equally obligated to defend the country if the need arises and we’re physically capable, but we should be so committed to our value in the military that we’re willing to accept the less glamorous side of our participation, which is registering for the draft,” she told Women’s eNews…
Tsetsi said that requiring women to register for the draft is more than symbolic, given the consequences that men face for not registering.
“It would be mere symbolism if registering for the draft were completely voluntary for men or if it didn’t threaten punishment for those who don’t register,” she said.
Jennifer Burke, a spokesperson for the Selective Service, said that more than 100,000 names and addresses of men suspected of dodging registration were reported to the Department of Justice last year.
The penalties for such men can be tangible, she added. “National headquarters and our data management center receive calls, emails, faxes and letters daily from men who are being denied financial aid, federal jobs, job training, security clearance and citizenship because they failed to register by law,” she said.
Men who fail to register can also be fined up to $250,000, though Burke said that hasn’t actually happened since the 1980s…
“For the existing law to include women in the Selective Service registration process, it would take a change in the law voted by Congress and approved by the president,” she said.
Way too logical for Selective Service or Congress to deal with.
Actually, I like Charlie Rangel’s approach to the whole question. Reinstate the draft. Specify no exemptions for politicians or their children. That alone should cut down on the number of wars our government seems to require.
A 30-second video of a newborn baby shows the infant silently snoozing in its crib, his breathing barely perceptible. But when the video is run through an algorithm that can amplify both movement and color, the baby’s face blinks crimson with each tiny heartbeat.
The amplification process is called Eulerian Video Magnification, and is the brainchild of a team of scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.
The team originally developed the program to monitor neonatal babies without making physical contact. But they quickly learned that the algorithm can be applied to other videos to reveal changes imperceptible to the naked eye. Prof. William T. Freeman, a leader on the team, imagines its use in search and rescue, so that rescuers could tell from a distance if someone trapped on a ledge, say, is still breathing…
The system works by homing in on specific pixels in a video over the course of time. Frame-by-frame, the program identifies minute changes in color and then amplifies them up to 100 times, turning, say, a subtle shift toward pink to a bright crimson…In one video presented by the scientists, a stationary crane sits on a construction site, so still it could be a photograph. But once run through the program, the crane appears to sway precariously in the wind, perhaps tipping workers off to a potential hazard.
It is important to note that the crane does not actually move as much as the video seems to show. It is the process of motion amplification that gives the crane its movement.
The program originally gained attention last summer when the team presented it at the annual computer graphics conference known as Siggraph in Los Angeles.
Since then, the M.I.T. team has improved the algorithm to achieve better quality results, with significant improvements in clarity and accuracy.
First, it’s great knowing that Siggraph still rocks, still a regular part of the future of computing.
Second, we’re witnessing one more of an endless stream of concepts that become more than daydreams with the sort of computing horsepower it is possible to put into motion. What’s next?
El Señor Studio has the honour to present the failures of the natural selection. A set of strange creatures whose instincts instead of focusing on survival seem doomed them to an absurd and comic extinction, in the presence of the astonished gaze of the narrator.
This is also the story of the relationship between these creatures and its Narrator. The character of the Narrator was a documentary star, but unfortunately for him, the good times are over and he is forced to accept this strange documentary, which he considered far below its potential.