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  • Nyenius 5:55 pm on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Asia, Cotton In, Greece, Queen Anne   

    10 Ancient Methods of Birth Control 

    Source: http://listverse.com/2010/11/14/10-ancient-methods-of-birth-control/

    by Iva Cheung

    This year marked the fiftieth anniversary of the birth control pill, which many considered to have empowered women and sparked the sexual revolution. But as this list will show, women have had some control over their reproductive rights for millennia, although some of these ancient birth control methods were, admittedly, more terrifying than most of the methods in use today.

    To be included on this list, the birth control had to be at least plausibly effective to some degree. Records exist of women in ancient Rome and Greece relying on dances and amulets to prevent pregnancy, and we can safely assume that those probably didn’t do much. At the risk of stirring up controversy, I’ve listed both contraceptives—which prevent sperm from fertilizing egg—and abortifacients, which induce abortion. For the sake of interest, I’ve focused on methods that would be unusual today, and not on methods that are still regularly practiced—like abstinence, coitus interruptus, or fertility awareness—to similar effect now as a few centuries ago. These items are in no particular order.

    10

    Lemons

    Lemons-1

    Citric acid is said to have spermicidal properties, and women used to soak sponges in lemon juice before inserting them vaginally. Mentioned in the Talmud, this was a preferred method of birth control in ancient Jewish communities. The sponge itself would act as a pessary—a physical barrier between the sperm and the cervix. The great womanizer Casanova was said to have inserted the rind of half a lemon into his lovers as a primitive cervical cap or diaphragm, the residual lemon juice serving to annihilate the sperm. Lemon- and lime-juice douches following coitus were also recommended as a form of birth control, but this method was likely less effective, since sperm can enter the cervix—and hence out of reach of any douching—within minutes of ejaculation. Incidentally, some alternative medicine practitioners today suggest that megadoses of vitamin C (6 to 10 g a day) could induce an abortion in women under 4 weeks of pregnancy, but there’s no evidence that citrus fruits were used in this way in ancient times.

    9

    Queen Anne’s Lace

    N3 Queen Anne's Lace

    Queen Anne’s Lace is also known as wild carrot, and its seeds have long been used as a contraceptive—Hippocrates described this use over two millennia ago. The seeds block progesterone synthesis, disrupting implantation and are most effective as emergency contraception within eight hours of exposure to sperm—a sort of “morning after” form of birth control. Taking Queen Anne’s Lace led to no or mild side effects (like a bit of constipation), and women who stopped taking it could conceive and rear a healthy child. The only danger, it seemed, was confusing the plant with similar-looking but potentially deadly poison hemlock and water hemlock.

    8

    Pennyroyal

    Mountain-Pennyroyal

    Pennyroyal is a plant in the mint genus and has a fragrance similar to that of spearmint. The ancient Greeks and Romans used it as a cooking herb and a flavoring ingredient in wine. They also drank pennyroyal tea to induce menstruation and abortion—1st-century physician Dioscorides records this use of pennyroyal in his massive five-volume encyclopedia on herbal medicine. Too much of the tea could be highly toxic, however, leading to multiple organ failure.

    7

    Blue Cohosh

    Caulophyllum Thalictroides Leaves

    Blue cohosh, traditionally used for birth control by Native Americans, contains at least two abortifacient substances: one mimics oxytocin, a hormone produced during childbirth that stimulates the uterus to contract, and a substance unique to blue cohosh, caulosaponin, also results in uterine contractions. Midwives today may use blue cohosh in the last month of pregnancy to tone the uterus in preparation for labour. The completely unrelated but similarly named black cohosh also has estrogenic and abortifacient properties and was often combined with blue cohosh to terminate a pregnancy.

    6

    Dong Quai

    Il Fullxfull.87787175

    Dong quai, also known as Chinese angelica, has long been known for its powerful effects on a woman’s cycle. Women drank a tonic brewed with dong quai roots to help regulate irregular menstruation, alleviate menstrual cramps and help the body regenerate after menstruation. Taken during early pregnancy, however, dong quai had the effect of causing uterine contractions and inducing abortion. European and American species of angelica have similar properties but were not as widely used.

    5

    Common Rue

    Rue Anemone Thalictrum Thalictroides Flower 2479Px

    Rue, a blue-green herb with feathery leaves, is grown as an ornamental plant and is favored by gardeners for its hardiness. It is rather bitter but can be used in small amounts as a flavoring ingredient in cooking. Soranus, a gynecologist from 2nd-century Greece, described its use as a potent abortifacient, and women in Latin America have traditionally eaten rue in salads as a contraceptive and drunk rue tea as emergency contraception or to induce abortion. Ingested regularly, rue decreases blood flow to the endometrium, essentially making the lining of the uterus non-nutritive to a fertilized egg.

    4

    Cotton

    Cotton-From-Usda-Image-Library-K5927-23

    In the ancient medical manuscript the Ebers Papyrus (1550 BCE), women were advised to grind dates, acacia tree bark, and honey together into a paste, apply this mixture to seed wool, and insert the seed wool vaginally for use as a pessary. Granted, it was what was in the cotton rather than the cotton itself that promoted its effectiveness as birth control—acacia ferments into lactic acid, a well-known spermicide—but the seed wool did serve as a physical barrier between ejaculate and cervix. Interestingly, though, women during the times of American slavery would chew on the bark of cotton root to prevent pregnancy. Cotton root bark contains substances that interfere with the corpus luteum, which is the hole left in the ovary when ovulation occurs. The corpus luteum secretes progesterone to prepare the uterus for implantation of a fertilized egg. By impeding the corpus luteum’s actions, cotton root bark halts progesterone production, without which a pregnancy can’t continue.

    3

    Papaya

    0745-130157

    In South Asia and Southeast Asia, unripe papaya was used to prevent or terminate pregnancy. Once papaya is ripe, though, it loses the phytochemicals that interfere with progesterone and thus its contraceptive and abortifacient properties. The seeds of the papaya could actually serve as an effective male contraceptive. Papaya seeds, taken daily, could cut a man’s sperm count to zero and was safe for long-term use. Best of all, the sterility was reversible: if the man stopped taking the seeds, his sperm count would return to normal.

    2

    Silphium

    Cmpssflwr

    Silphium was a member of the fennel family that grew on the shores of Cyrenaica (in present-day Libya). It was so important to the Cyrenean economy that it graced that ancient city’s coins. Silphium had a host of uses in cooking and in medicine, and Pliny the Elder recorded the herb’s use as a contraceptive. It was reportedly effective for contraception when taken once a month as a tincture. It could also be used as emergency birth control, either orally or vaginally, as an abortifacient. By the second century CE, the plant had gone extinct, likely because of over harvesting.

    1

    Mercury

    Miro-Calder-Mercury-Fountain

    Civilizations the world over, from the ancient Assyrians and Egyptians to the Greeks, were fascinated by mercury and were convinced that it had medicinal value and special curative properties, using it to treat everything from skin rashes to syphilis. In ancient China, women were advised to drink hot mercury to prevent pregnancy. It was likely pretty effective at convincing a woman’s body that she wasn’t fit to carry a child, leading to miscarriage, so in that sense, it worked as a contraceptive. However, as we know today, mercury is enormously toxic, causing kidney and lung failure, as well as brain damage and death. At that point, pregnancy would probably be the least of your worries.

     
  • Nyenius 5:13 pm on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Adult, adult source, , ,   

    25 things to know your an Adult! 

    Source: http://lolsnaps.com/?media_id=366&cat_type=all&order_type=latest&pagenum=1

     
  • Nyenius 5:12 pm on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ANC, Brazen Bull, , The Brazen Bull   

    Top 10 Gruesome Methods of Execution 

    Source: http://listverse.com/2007/09/12/top-10-gruesome-methods-of-execution/

    Since we started writing down the history of our race, man has frequently come up with revolting methods of killing for punishment. This is a list of the most revolting methods of execution from history. Thankfully most of them are no longer used.

    10. Brazen Bull

    10085759~The-Brazen-Bull-Torture-Instrument-Posters

    The Brazen Bull was invented by Perilaus of Athens (a Brass worker) in the 6th Century BC and offered to Phalaris, Tyrant of Agrigentum, as a gift. It was a large brass bull that was completely hollow inside with a door on the side large enough for a man to enter. Once the man was inside the bull, a fire would be lit beneath it in order to roast him to death. In the head of the bull, Perilaus put a series of tubes and stops that were designed to amplify the screams of the victim and make them sound like the roar of a bull.

    Interestingly, Perilaus was the first person to feel the pain of the Brazen Bull. After Perilaus said to Phalaris: “[his screams] will come to you through the pipes as the tenderest, most pathetic, most melodious of bellowings”, Phalaris was so disgusted that he tricked Perilaus in to entering the bull. Lucian recounts the tale:

    ‘His words revolted me. I loathed the thought of such ingenious cruelty, and resolved to punish the artificer in kind. “If this is anything more than an empty boast, Perilaus,” I said to him, “if your art can really produce this effect, get inside yourself, and pretend to roar; and we will see whether the pipes will make such music as you describe.” He consented; and when he was inside I closed the aperture, and ordered a fire to be kindled. “Receive,” I cried, “the due reward of your wondrous art: let the music-master be the first to play.” Phalaris I:12

    Perilaus was removed from the Bull before he died and Phalaris had him thrown off a cliff. The Brazen Bull became one of the most common methods of execution in Ancient Greece.

    9. Hanging Drawing and Quartering

    Gunpowderhdq2

    Hanging drawing and quartering was the common form of punishment in England for the crime of treason which was considered the worst crime you could commit. The punishment was only applied to men – women found guilty of treason were burnt at the stake. Unbelievably, this punishment remained in law until 1814.

    The first stage of the execution was to be tied to a wooden frame and dragged behind a horse to the place of your death. Following that, the criminal would be hanged until they were nearly dead. The criminal would then be removed from the noose and laid on a table. The executioner would then disembowel and emasculate the victim, and burn the entrails in front of his eyes. He would still be alive at this point. The person would then be beheaded and their body cut in to quarters. Samuel Pepys, in his famous diary, was an eyewitness at one of these executions:

    To my Lord’s in the morning, where I met with Captain Cuttance, but my Lord not being up I went out to Charing Cross, to see Major-general Harrison hanged, drawn, and quartered; which was done there, he looking as cheerful as any man could do in that condition. He was presently cut down, and his head and heart shown to the people, at which there was great shouts of joy. It is said, that he said that he was sure to come shortly at the right hand of Christ to judge them that now had judged him; and that his wife do expect his coming again. Thus it was my chance to see the King beheaded at White Hall, and to see the first blood shed in revenge for the blood of the King at Charing Cross.

    The normal practice was to send the five parts of the body to various areas where they would be put on display on a gibbet as a warning to others.

    8. Burning

    Burn At The Stake

    Burning at the Stake was normally done in one of two ways. In the first, the victim would be lead to the center of a wall of sticks and straw and tied to the stake, after which the space between the criminal and the wall would be filled with wood – concealing the person. It is believed that this is the manner in which St Joan of Arc was burnt. The other method was to pile sticks and straw up to the level of the calves only.

    When performed by a skilled executioner, the person would burn in this sequence: calves, thighs and hands, torso and forearms, breasts, upper chest, face; and then finally death. Needless to say this would have been excruciating. If a large number of people were to be burnt at the same time, death could occur through carbon monoxide poisoning before the fire reached you. If the fire was small, you could die of shock, blood loss, or heatstroke.

    In later versions of burning at the stake, the criminal would be hanged until dead and then burnt symbolically. This method of execution was used to burn witches in most parts of Europe, but it was not used in England for that purpose.

    7. Ling Chi

    Kitchen

    Ling Chi – execution by slow cutting – was practiced in China until it was outlawed in 1905. In the execution, the criminal is slowly cut in the arms, legs, and chest, until finally they are beheaded or stabbed in the heart. Many western accounts of the execution method are largely exaggerated, with some claiming that the execution could take days to perform.

    One modern eyewitness report from Journalist and Politician Henry Norman, describes an execution thus:

    The criminal is fastened to a rough cross, and the executioner, armed with a sharp knife, begins by grasping handfuls from the fleshy parts of the body, such as the thighs and the breasts, and slicing them off. After this he removes the joints and the excrescences of the body one by one-the nose and ears, fingers and toes. Then the limbs are cut off piecemeal at the wrists and the ankles, the elbows and knees, the shoulders and hips. Finally, the victim is stabbed to the heart and his head cut off.

    You can see a particularly revolting image of a criminal who has been executed by this method here and another here.

    6. Breaking Wheel

    800Px-Breaking Wheel

    The breaking wheel was also known as the Catherine Wheel and it was a mediaeval execution device. The criminal would be attached to a cart wheel and his arms and legs stretched out along the spokes. The wheel would be made to turn while a heavy metal bar or hammer would deliver bone breaking blows to various parts of the body between the spokes. If a merciful execution had been ordered, after a large number of bones were shattered, fatal blows would be delivered. In cases where mercy was not offered, the criminal would remain on the wheel until they died – this could sometimes take days and the person would die of shock and dehydration.

    After the shattering was complete, the limbs of the person would be woven between the spokes and the wheel would be hoisted to the top of a pole for birds to eat the, sometimes still living, body.

    In France, a special grace was sometimes offered in which the criminal would be strangled to death before the blows were delivered, or after only two or three.

    5. Boiling

    Cauldron 6 (Small)

    In execution by boiling, the condemned is stripped naked and either placed in a vat of boiling liquid, or in a vat of cold liquid which was then heated to boiling. The liquid could be oil, acid, tar, water, or molten lead. During the reign of King Henry VIII it was a punishment especially reserved for poisoners.

    “The preamble of the statute of Henry VIII (which made poisoning treason) in 1531 recites that one Richard Roose (or Coke), a cook, by putting poison in some food intended for the household of the bishop of Rochester and for the poor of the parish of Lambeth, killed a man and woman. He was found guilty of treason and sentenced to be boiled to death without benefit of clergy. He was publicly boiled at Smithfield. In the same year a maid-servant for poisoning her mistress was boiled at King’s Lynn.” [Encyclopedia Britannica, 1911]

    The “Chronicle of the Grey Friars of London” (published by the Camden Society) has an account of a case at Smithfield, in which a man was fastened to a chain and let down into boiling water several times until he was dead. In modern days, Idi Amin has been accused of using this method of execution on his enemies.

    4. Flaying

    Gerardavid19.Jpg

    Execution by Flaying is when the skin of the criminal is removed from their body with the use of a very sharp knife. Attempts are made to keep the skin intact. This is a very ancient method of execution. The apostle Bartholomew was flayed and crucified upside down. His skin and bones are kept in a Cathedral in Sicily.

    There are accounts of Assyrians flaying the skin from a captured enemy or rebellious ruler and nailing it to the wall of his city, as warning to all who would defy their power. The Aztecs of Mexico flayed victims of ritual human sacrifice, generally after death.

    While this method of execution is not lawful in any country, in 2000, government troops in Myanma (Burma) allegedly flayed all of the males of a Karenni village.

    3. Necklacing

     33659 Necklace

    Necklacing is a type of execution in which a rubber tyre is filled with gasoline, forced over the arms and chest of the victim, and set alight. It was a common practice in South Africa during the 1980s and 1990s anti-apartheid struggle.

    Necklacing sentences were sometimes handed down against alleged criminals by “people’s courts” established in black townships as a means of circumventing the apartheid judicial system. Necklacing was also used to punish members of the black community who were perceived as collaborators with the apartheid regime. These included black policemen, town councilors and others, as well as their relatives and associates. The practice was frequently carried out in the name of the African National Congress (ANC), and was even endorsed by Winnie Mandela, then-wife of the imprisoned Nelson Mandela and a senior member of the ANC, although the ANC officially condemned the practice. [Wikipedia]

    Necklacing has also occured in Brazil, and Haiti, and at least one person was killed by this method in Nigeria during muslim protests over the Muhammad Cartoons.

    2. Scaphism

    Old Tree

    Scaphism is an Ancient Persian method of execution. According to Wikipedia, a naked person would be firmly fastened within a back-to-back pair of narrow rowboats (or in some variations a hollowed out tree trunk), the head, hands, and feet protruding from this improvised container. The condemned was forced to ingest milk and honey to the point of developing severe diarrhea, and more honey would be rubbed on his body so as to attract insects to the exposed appendages. They would then be left to float on a stagnant pond (or alternately, simply exposed to the sun somewhere). The defenseless individual’s feces accumulated within the container, attracting more insects, which would eat and breed within his or her exposed (and increasingly gangrenous) flesh. Death, when it eventually occurred, was probably due to a combination of dehydration, starvation and septic shock.

    Plutarch writes that it took Mithridates 17 days to die by this method of execution. Native American Indians also used a similar method of execution where they would tie the victim to a tree, smear him and leave him to the ants. Because he was not previously force-fed, he would generally starve in a few days.

    1. Sawing

    Cranach.Jpg

    In Execution by sawing, the criminal would be hung upside-down and a large saw would be used to cut their body in half, starting with the groin, all the way to the head. Because the person was hanging upside-down, the brain received sufficient blood to keep them alive until the saw finally reached the main blood vessels in the abdomen. In the Asian version of this execution, the victim would stand upright and the sawing would begin at the top of the head.

    Some traditions state that the Prophet Isaiah was executed by the saw. It is believed that Saint Paul is making reference to this in his Epistle to the Hebrews 11:37:

    They were stoned, they were cut asunder, they were tempted, they were put to death by the sword, they wandered about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being in want, distressed, afflicted.

    This method of execution was used in the Middle East, Europe, and parts of Asia. It was also used in the Roman Empire and was considered to be the favorite punishment dished out by Emperor Caligula.

     
  • Nyenius 5:09 pm on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Islam, misconception about islam   

    Top 10 Misconceptions About Islam 

    Source: http://listverse.com/2009/07/10/top-10-misconceptions-about-islam/

    by The Duke Capone

    In the words of Swiss journalist and author, Roger Du Pasquier “The West, whether Christian or dechristianised, has never really known Islam. Ever since they watched it appear on the world stage, Christians never ceased to insult and slander it in order to find justification for waging war on it. It has been subjected to grotesque distortions the traces of which still endure in the European mind. Even today there are many Westerners for whom Islam can be reduced to three ideas: fanaticism, fatalism and polygamy. Of course, there does exist a more cultivated public whose ideas about Islam are less deformed; there are still precious few who know that the word islam signifies nothing other than ‘submission to God’. One symptom of this ignorance is the fact that in the imagination of most Europeans, Allah refers to the divinity of the Muslims, not the God of the Christians and Jews; they are all surprised to hear, when one takes the trouble to explain things to them, that ‘Allah’ means ‘God’, and that even Arab Christians know him by no other name. “

    10 Muslims are Arabs

    China 9X

    Misconception: All Muslims are Arabs

    The common image of a Muslim is a turbaned dark Arab man with a long beard. However this image is part of the minority of Muslims. Arabs make only 15% of the world’s Muslim population. As a matter of fact the Middle East comes in third with East Asia coming in at first (69%) and Africa (27%) coming in at second. Another common misconception is that all Arabs are Muslims. While the vast majority of Arabs are Muslims (75%), there are many other religions that Arabs practice including Christianity and Judaism.

    9 Muslims and Jesus

    Lastjudgment30D

    Misconception: Muslims Hate Jesus

    There are many similarities between the historical references of Christianity and Islam. Many people are amazed to find out that according to Muslim belief, Jesus is one of the greatest messengers of God. One cannot be a Muslim without believing in the virgin birth and the many miracles of Jesus Christ. Jesus is also mentioned in many verses of the Quran and is often used as an example of good virtue and character. However, the main difference between Christianity and Islam is that Muslims do not believe that Jesus was God. Pictured above is Jesus in an Islamic portrayal of the last judgement.

    8 Children’s Rights

    Picture 1-106

    Misconception: Children have no rights

    Children, according to Islamic law, have various rights. One of these is the right to be properly brought up, raised, and educated. Islam encourages children to be brought up well because it is the responsibility of an adult to raise his child to become a moral and ethical adult. Children must also be treated equally. When giving financial gifts they should all be the same amount and there should be no preference among them. Children are even permitted to take moderately from their parent’s wealth to sustain themselves if the parent declines to give them proper funds for living. A child is also not allowed to get hit in the face or hit by anything larger than a pencil.

    7 Religious Intolerance

    Sat-B4-Chsfr-Synaxis-Monastics

    Misconception: Islam is intolerable to other religions

    ‘Kill the infidel’ is the phrase many people believe is the ideology that Muslims have towards the non Muslims. This, though, is not a correct portrayal of Islamic law. Islam has always given respect and freedom of religion to all faiths. In the Quran it says “God does not forbid you, with regards to those who fight you not for religion nor drive you away out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them, for god loves those who are just.” There are many historical examples of Muslim tolerance towards other faith. One such example was when the caliph Umar was ruler of Jerusalem from 634 to 644 AD. He granted freedom to all religious communities and said that the inhabitants of his city were safe and that their places of worship would never be taken away from them. He also set up courts that were designated to the non Muslim minorities. Whenever he would visit holy areas he would ask for the Christian patriarch Sophronius (pictured above) to accompany him.

    6 Islamic Jihad

    I28 17796607

    Misconception: Jihad means to fight for the sake of god

    The true Arabic meaning of the word jihad is struggle. However in Islam it is often used to describe the striving in the way of god. There are many forms of jihad but the most important ones are Jihad al-nafs (jihad against ones self), jihad bil-lisan (jihad by being vocal), jihad bil yad (jihad by using action), and Jihad bis saif (jihad by using the sword). Each jihad is ranked differently and it was reported that Muhammad returned from a battle and said “We have returned from the lesser jihad (going into battle) to the greater jihad (the struggle of the soul).” This means that a Muslim struggling against himself and his soul is more important than the jihad of going into war. Another misconception is that only when a person dies in war does that person becomes a martyr. This is, however, false and it is believed that anyone doing anything for the sake of god and is killed becomes a martyr. A person who dies while performing pilgrimage in Mecca, a woman who dies while giving birth, or even someone who dies in a car crash while he was on his way to the mosque are all considered martyrs.

    5 Child Bride

    Mo Aisha Daughter-1

    Misconception: The Prophet Muhammad was a pedophile

    While it is true that he married a girl that was at the age of nine that does not constitute pedophilia. Historically, the age at which a girl was considered ready to be married has been puberty. This was the case in Biblical times, and is still used today to determine the age of marriage in many parts of the world. This was part of the norm and is not something that Islam invented. The girl he got married to had reached puberty 3 years before marriage. It is upon reaching the age of puberty that a person, man or woman, becomes legally responsible for their actions under Islamic law. At this point, they are allowed to make their own decisions and are held accountable for their actions. It should also be mentioned that in Islam, it is unlawful to force someone to marry someone that they do not want to marry. There is no indication that the society at that time criticized this marriage due to the girl’s young age. On the contrary, the marriage was encouraged by the girl’s family and was welcomed by the community at large.

    4 Muslim Savages

    The Islamic War

    Misconception: Muslims are savages and barbaric during war

    Quite the contrary, when it comes to the conduct of war there are ten rules that every Muslim army must obey:

    1. Do not commit treachery
    2. Do not deviate from the right path
    3. Do not mutilate dead bodies
    4. Do not kill children
    5. Do not kill women
    6. Do not kill aged men
    7. Do not harm or burn trees
    8. Do not destroy buildings
    9. Do not destroy an enemy’s flock, unless you use it for your food
    10. When you pass people who have devoted their lives to monastic services leave them alone

    During the crusades when Saladin defeated the franks he honored the defeated Frankish army and supplied them with food and during the third crusade when Saladin’s enemy king Richard fell sick, Saladin sent him a gift of fruits and horses.

    3 Women’s Rights

    Miss Indonesia Universe 2006 Miss Universe 2006 Nadine Chandrawinata Indonesian Muslim Women Nadine In Bikini

    Misconception: Women have no rights

    The image of a woman wearing a veil from head to toe, a woman who gets unfair justice or a woman who is not allowed to drive is an all too familiar notion when it comes to women treatment in Islam. And while there are Muslim countries in the world that do implement many harsh rulings against women, this should not be portrayed as Islamic law. Many of these countries have cultural differences that go against the teachings of Islam. It should be noted that during pre-Islam Arabia women were used for fornication only and had no independence. The birth of a daughter in a family was considered humiliating and the practice of female infanticide was uncontrolled. When Islam came to being, verses in the Quran condemned the practice of female infanticide. Islam gave back many human rights to the woman and Muhammad(s) was even reported saying that “women are the twin halves of men.” A Muslim woman is allowed to reject and accept any suitor for marriage and has the right to seek divorce. There is nothing in Islam that forbids a Muslim woman from exiting her house and is allowed to drive. Also in regards to education, a woman is obligated to seek knowledge and it is considered a sin if she refuses.

    2 By the Sword

    Islammongolsyurts

    Misconception: Islam was spread by the sword

    Historian De lacey O’Leary states “History makes it clear however, that the legend of fanatical Muslims sweeping through the world and forcing Islam at the point of the sword upon conquered races is one of the most fantastically absurd myths that historians have ever repeated.” There is no record in history that shows people being forced by sword point to convert to Islam. When Islam spread through countries they would set up private churches and synagogues for the non Muslims they were governing and because of the good treatment they had received they themselves would convert. If one considers the small number of Muslims who initially spread Islam to the west all the way from Spain and Morocco and into east from India and China one would realize that such a small group of people could not force others to be members of a religion against their will. It is also interesting to note that when the Mongols invaded and conquered large portions of the Islamic empire, instead of destroying the religion they adopted it!

    1 Islamic Terrorism

    Itikaf-080923 03

    Misconception: Muslims are terrorists

    This is by far the biggest misconception of Islam, given unfairly by stereotyping and the public image that the media gives. Has anyone else noticed how when a specific group of people attack another group of people it is labeled as a ‘hate crime’, but when a Muslim opens fire on anybody it is quickly regarded as ‘terrorism’. Many political dictators and officials or extremist groups use the name of Islam as a strategy to garner followers and attention when many of their practices go against the true basis of Islam. The media has also portrayed Islam as a cult or a club where if you join you become a terrorist and that is now part of your agenda. However all over the world people practice Islam in the true form and use it as a way of life. There are many verses in the Quran that go against the idea of terrorism. Some of these verses include “fight in the way of Allah those that fight you but do not transgress limits for god does not love transgressors.” This basically means do not fight except in self defense and even in doing so do not go beyond defense. Another verse states “if they seek peace, then you seek peace,” which means do not attack people for no reason or kill innocent people. There is nowhere in Islam, whether it be in the Quran or the teachings of Muhammad, that promotes the killing of innocent people. Pictured above is a conference of Muslims against Terrorism.

     
  • Nyenius 6:32 am on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Chad, Chad Perrin, EFF, Privacy Breach   

    Why you should never trust Facebook 

    Source: http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/security/?p=4708&tag=nl.e064

    Facebook has a dismal reputation when it comes to privacy issues. This is evidently a problem that starts at the top, with Facebook co-founder, President, and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Nick Bilton summed it up neatly in a Tweet:

    Off record chat w/ Facebook employee. Me: How does Zuck feel about privacy? Response: [laughter] He doesn’t believe in it.

    This does not appear to be a new development, either. In 2003, when Facebook was called “The Facebook” and Zuckerberg operated it from his Harvard dorm room, he said some regrettable things in an IM conversation about users of the fledgling social networking site, according to a SocialMediaNews article:

    Zuck: Yeah so if you ever need info about anyone at Harvard.

    Just ask. I have over 4,000 emails, pictures, addresses, SNS

    (Friend): What? How’d you manage that one?

    Zuck: People just submitted it. I don’t know why.

    They “trust me”

    Dumb f**ks.

    This has manifested in a number of ways that show significant negligence, sometimes to the point of appearing to be hostility, toward issues of Facebook users’ privacy. Lifehacker reported that “Facebook ‘Delete’ Can Take 16 Embarrassing Months,” for instance.

    It gets bigger than that. The Wall Street Journal reports, in its article, Facebook in Privacy Breach, that many of the most popular Facebook apps have been giving users’ identifying information — and that of their Facebook friends — to advertising and Internet data mining companies:

    The issue affects tens of millions of Facebook app users, including people who set their profiles to Facebook’s strictest privacy settings. The practice breaks Facebook’s rules, and renews questions about its ability to keep identifiable information about its users’ activities secure.

    It has gotten so bad that, as ClickZ puts it, “Congressmen Question Facebook About Alleged Privacy Breach.”

    The way Facebook is insinuating itself into everything else on the Web, from other sites’ login mechanisms to the now-ubiquitous “Like button”, the problem seems destined to grow worse. Arnab Nandi explains that “Deceiving Users with the Facebook Like Button” is easy:

    Users can be tricked into “Like”ing pages they’re not at.

    He goes on to elaborate on some of the issues with Facebook and its Like buttons in “Reputation, Misrepresentation, Trail Paranoia and other side effects of Liking the World.” He offers some “solutions” to problems he raises. He puts “solutions” in scare quotes to address the fact that some people do not think there is a problem in need of solving; this article does so because his “solutions” do not really address the root of the problem, and are prone to being undermined — and thus do not solve the real problem at all.

    Even supposedly improved privacy settings at Facebook are a mixed bag at best. In the EFF’s report of December 2009, Facebook’s New Privacy Changes: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly,” we learned:

    Facebook is finally rolling out a new set of revamped privacy settings for its 350 million users. …Unfortunately, several of the claimed privacy “improvements” have created new and serious privacy problems for users of the popular social network service.

    The total result of the change was to clarify privacy settings for users so it is more obvious what they are allowing and disallowing, but otherwise to actually reduce the effective privacy that can be achieved. The EFF article takes issue with Facebook’s recommendations for privacy settings as well, correctly pointing out that those recommendations are actually designed to convince people to share more about themselves publicly rather than less. The EFF offers some alternative recommendations that do seem better designed for purposes of protecting user privacy.

    Why don’t Zuckerberg and Facebook respect privacy?

    All indications are that Zuckerberg is actually on the right side of a lot of issues important to the EFF and the kind of people who like the EFF. He seems to really believe in the importance of openness — open source software, openness about policies, and so on.

    At the same time, however, the evidence clearly points to Zuckerberg having a distinct lack of respect for privacy. It seems likely, if one speculates freely, that Zuckerberg simply does not believe in privacy — believes it effectively does not exist, and in some respects may even conflict with an ethical approach to the issues important to him. It would seem, given his reputed interest in openness, that he extends the healthy concern for openness represented by organizations like the EFF to unreasonable extremes, including a complete disregard for anyone’s desires to keep some information private. He may be merely misguided, rather than malicious.

    That is cold comfort for those of us who care about our privacy, however. Someone with such a dismissive attitude toward privacy as to believe it simply does not exist as a meaningful, valid concept is likely to do things that violate privacy expectations in an underhanded manner. So, too, is a company that person controls. This is, at it turns out, exactly what happens with Facebook; marketing rhetoric suggests that the social networking corporation respects privacy while its policies in practice directly contradict that image.

    With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that Facebook has developed a reputation for resetting privacy settings to more-open configurations, on the sly. A number of times, people have discovered that after they have tightened up their privacy settings, Facebook reset them to a less protective configuration. It has gotten bad enough that there is now a Facebook group called “Facebook reset my privacy settings.”

    Are Zuckerberg and Facebook misguided? Perhaps.

    Is Facebook’s handling of privacy issues underhanded, deceptive, and generally bad? Certainly.

    If Facebook was simply more forthcoming about its effective attitude toward privacy — that it is an illusion, or at least an unimportant concern that the company will do its best to circumvent — things would not be so bad. If there were no privacy settings at all, and Facebook very clearly and obviously conveyed to its users that it would share their information with any and all, the situation would not appear so dire.

    It is not so much the fact that Facebook does not provide effective privacy to its users that gives it the image of a seedy, deceitful back-alley dealer in private information, worthy of the hate it attracts. It is the fact that Facebook implies concern for the privacy and security of its users in policies, in the presentation of configuration options and marketing rhetoric, then undermines those expectations with a will. Even if privacy itself is not “real”, the violated trust placed in Facebook is very real.

    What should I do about it?

    There are a number of software tools one can use to monitor and manage privacy settings at Facebook. That such tools are needed — that they exist at all — is indicative of the breadth and depth of the problem.

    The EFF’s recommendations for privacy settings may help, in conjunction with some of those third-party tools. The end result is still of running the risk of information you wish to keep private being passed on to parties you would not want to see it, however. That Facebook allows people (your Facebook “friends”) who can see your private information to automatically share that information with others is a significant problem with the idea that the right privacy settings on Facebook can ever solve its privacy problems for you. There is no reasonable option for changing your mind in the Facebook world, either; “deleting” something from Facebook, in reality, often results in nothing more than hiding from you the fact that it is still on Facebook and publicly accessible.

    There are, in essence, only two ways to ensure any real privacy on Facebook:

    1. Never use Facebook. Never create an account in the first place. If you must use a social networking Web application similar to Facebook, use a competitor — maybe even use a new service called Diaspora that is currently in development, whenever it becomes fully usable. Unfortunately, for those of us who have already created Facebook accounts, the best we can do in this regard is delete the account, which Facebook tries to discourage, and hope that the deletion actually works. It may be a vain hope.
    2. Never share anything with Facebook that divulges any information at all that you would prefer to keep private. This includes email addresses as part of your supposedly private account data that you would not want shared with spammers, or authentication information (usernames and passwords) you use anywhere else. There are cases where Facebook provides a significant benefit to companies and other organizations that need to be able to reach out to members and customers in social networks, but using an email address created solely for a Facebook account is a reasonable step. Similarly obscuring any actually private, or otherwise sensitive, data is only good sense when dealing with something like Facebook.

    This is good advice not only for Facebook, but for any Website that is in a position to abuse your trust. That means most of them. We all tend to make some decisions to try trusting people who we do not actually know well enough to trust. Are you using an email address you use for anything else to log in here at TechRepublic? Have you ever sent anyone (including me) a peer mail here at TechRepublic that included any information you would not want shared with others?

    The majority of such people and Websites we trust to some minor degree like that may not violate our expectations of privacy, but it is difficult to be sure that we are selecting the right people to trust. This is why, of those we choose to trust, only the majority do not violate it; those who do end up violating our trust represent the cases where we guessed wrong.

    It is not reasonable to never trust anyone at all, but there are times when we should definitely not give someone our trust. One of those times is the case of Facebook and privacy. The corporation has proven over and over again that it does not care about our privacy, and is in some respects actively hostile to it. When its founder, president, and CEO has stated his complete disregard for issues of privacy, too, the evidence that Facebook should not be trusted for reasons of privacy only grows.

    It has been said that to keep certain information private, one should never post it to the Internet. That seems obvious — but even people who believe that do not effectively live by it. The truth of the matter is that to be sure something remains private you should not even include it in your login information, let alone in your public profile, or even a “private” profile.

    Benjamin Franklin’s Poor Richard’s Almanac informed us that three can keep a secret if two of them are dead. That may seem a bit extreme at first glance, but it is worth keeping in mind when considering whether you can trust any Website to protect your private information. Even worse, Facebook has effectively declared that it will never respect your privacy.

     

    Chad PerrinChad Perrin is an IT consultant, developer, and freelance professional writer. He holds both Microsoft and CompTIA certifications and is a graduate of two IT industry trade schools. Read his full bio and profile.

     
  • Nyenius 6:26 am on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cara kesetrum, electricity shock, Funny Pictures   

    30 Ways to Shock Yourself 

    Source: http://funniez.net/Funny-Pictures/30-ways-to-shock-yourself.html

    Maybe a bit disturbing, but here are 30 pictures from the 1931 book  “Elektroschutz in 132 Bildern”.

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

    30 ways to die of electrocution

     
    • pencari_Shock 1:38 am on June 4, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      saya tidak Shock

  • Nyenius 6:25 am on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: API, CEO, Open Graph, Top Ten   

    Top Ten Reasons You Should Quit Facebook 

    Source: http://www.interestings.net/?p=167

    Facebook privacy policies keep going down the drain. That’s enough reason for many to abandon it. Here you will find nine more:

    After some reflection, I’ve decided to delete my account on Facebook. I’d like to encourage you to do the same. This is part altruism and part selfish. The altruism part is that I think Facebook, as a company, is unethical. The selfish part is that I’d like my own social network to migrate away from Facebook so that I’m not missing anything. In any event, here’s my “Top Ten” reasons for why you should join me and many others and delete your account.

    10. Facebook’s Terms Of Service are completely one-sided

    Let’s start with the basics. Facebook’s Terms Of Service state that not only do they own your data (section 2.1), but if you don’t keep it up to date and accurate (section 4.6), they can terminate your account (section 14). You could argue that the terms are just protecting Facebook’s interests, and are not in practice enforced, but in the context of their other activities, this defense is pretty weak. As you’ll see, there’s no reason to give them the benefit of the doubt. Essentially, they see their customers as unpaid employees for crowd-sourcing ad-targeting data.

    9. Facebook’s CEO has a documented history of unethical behavior

    From the very beginning of Facebook’s existence, there are questions about Zuckerberg’s ethics. According to BusinessInsider.com, he used Facebook user data to guess email passwords and read personal email in order to discredit his rivals. These allegations, albeit unproven and somewhat dated, nonetheless raise troubling questions about the ethics of the CEO of the world’s largest social network. They’re particularly compelling given that Facebook chose to fork over $65M to settle a related lawsuit alleging that Zuckerberg had actually stolen the idea for Facebook.

    8. Facebook has flat out declared war on privacy

    Founder and CEO of Facebook, in defense of Facebook’s privacy changes last January: “People have really gotten comfortable not only sharing more information and different kinds, but more openly and with more people. That social norm is just something that has evolved over time.” More recently, in introducing the Open Graph API: “… the default is now social.” Essentially, this means Facebook not only wants to know everything about you, and own that data, but to make it available to everybody. Which would not, by itself, necessarily be unethical, except that …

    7. Facebook is pulling a classic bait-and-switch

    At the same time that they’re telling developers how to access your data with new APIs, they are relatively quiet about explaining the implications of that to members. What this amounts to is a bait-and-switch. Facebook gets you to share information that you might not otherwise share, and then they make it publicly available. Since they are in the business of monetizing information about you for advertising purposes, this amounts to tricking their users into giving advertisers information about themselves. This is why Facebook is so much worse than Twitter in this regard: Twitter has made only the simplest (and thus, more credible) privacy claims and their customers know up front that all their tweets are public. It’s also why the FTC is getting involved, and people are suing them (and winning).

    Check out this excellent timeline from the EFF documenting the changes to Facebook’s privacy policy.

    6. Facebook is a bully

    When Pete Warden demonstrated just how this bait-and-switch works (by crawling all the data that Facebook’s privacy settings changes had inadvertently made public) they sued him. Keep in mind, this happened just before they announced the Open Graph API and stated that the “default is now social.” So why sue an independent software developer and fledgling entrepreneur for making data publicly available when you’re actually already planning to do that yourself? Their real agenda is pretty clear: they don’t want their membership to know how much data is really available. It’s one thing to talk to developers about how great all this sharing is going to be; quite another to actually see what that means in the form of files anyone can download and load into MatLab.

    5. Even your private data is shared with applications

    At this point, all your data is shared with applications that you install. Which means now you’re not only trusting Facebook, but the application developers, too, many of whom are too small to worry much about keeping your data secure. And some of whom might be even more ethically challenged than Facebook. In practice, what this means is that all your data – all of it – must be effectively considered public, unless you simply never use any Facebook applications at all. Coupled with the OpenGraph API, you are no longer trusting Facebook, but the Facebook ecosystem.

    4. Facebook is not technically competent enough to be trusted

    Even if we weren’t talking about ethical issues here, I can’t trust Facebook’s technical competence to make sure my data isn’t hijacked. For example, their recent introduction of their “Like” button makes it rather easy for spammers to gain access to my feed and spam my social network. Or how about this gem for harvesting profile data? These are just the latest of a series of Keystone Kops mistakes, such as accidentally making users’ profiles completely public, or the cross-site scripting hole that took them over two weeks to fix. They either don’t care too much about your privacy or don’t really have very good engineers, or perhaps both.

    3. Facebook makes it incredibly difficult to truly delete your account

    It’s one thing to make data public or even mislead users about doing so; but where I really draw the line is that, once you decide you’ve had enough, it’s pretty tricky to really delete your account. They make no promises about deleting your data and every application you’ve used may keep it as well. On top of that, account deletion is incredibly (and intentionally) confusing. When you go to your account settings, you’re given an option to deactivate your account, which turns out not to be the same thing as deleting it. Deactivating means you can still be tagged in photos and be spammed by Facebook (you actually have to opt out of getting emails as part of the deactivation, an incredibly easy detail to overlook, since you think you’re deleting your account). Finally, the moment you log back in, you’re back like nothing ever happened! In fact, it’s really not much different from not logging in for awhile. To actually delete your account, you have to find a link buried in the on-line help (by “buried” I mean it takes five clicks to get there). Or you can just click here. Basically, Facebook is trying to trick their users into allowing them to keep their data even after they’ve “deleted” their account.

    2. Facebook doesn’t (really) support the Open Web

    The so-called Open Graph API is named so as to disguise its fundamentally closed nature. It’s bad enough that the idea here is that we all pitch in and make it easier than ever to help Facebook collect more data about you. It’s bad enough that most consumers will have no idea that this data is basically public. It’s bad enough that they claim to own this data and are aiming to be the one source for accessing it. But then they are disingenuous enough to call it “open,” when, in fact, it is completely proprietary to Facebook. You can’t use this feature unless you’re on Facebook. A truly open implementation would work with whichever social network we prefer, and it would look something like OpenLike. Similarly, they implement just enough of OpenID to claim they support it, while aggressively promoting a proprietary alternative, Facebook Connect.

    1. The Facebook application itself ****s

    Between the farms and the mafia wars and the “top news” (which always guesses wrong – is that configurable somehow?) and the myriad privacy settings and the annoying ads (with all that data about me, the best they can apparently do is promote dating sites, because, uh, I’m single) and the thousands upon thousands of crappy applications, Facebook is almost completely useless to me at this point. Yes, I could probably customize it better, but the navigation is ridiculous, so I don’t bother. (And, yet, somehow, I can’t even change colors or apply themes or do anything to make my page look personalized.) Let’s not even get into how slowly your feed page loads. Basically, at this point, Facebook is more annoying than anything else.

    Facebook is clearly determined to add every feature of every competing social network in an attempt to take over the Web (this is a never-ending quest that goes back to AOL and those damn CDs that were practically falling out of the sky). While Twitter isn’t the most usable thing in the world, at least they’ve tried to stay focused and aren’t trying to be everything to everyone.

    I often hear people talking about Facebook as though they were some sort of monopoly or public trust. Well, they aren’t. They owe us nothing. They can do whatever they want, within the bounds of the laws. (And keep in mind, even those criteria are pretty murky when it comes to social networking.) But that doesn’t mean we have to actually put up with them. Furthermore, their long-term success is by no means guaranteed – have we all forgotten MySpace? Oh, right, we have. Regardless of the hype, the fact remains that Sergei Brin or Bill Gates or Warren Buffett could personally acquire a majority stake in Facebook without even straining their bank account. And Facebook’s revenue remains more or less a rounding error for more established tech companies.

    While social networking is a fun new application category enjoying remarkable growth, Facebook isn’t the only game in town. I don’t like their application nor how they do business and so I’ve made my choice to use other providers. And so can you.

     
  • Nyenius 6:21 am on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: India, Iran, Israel, Poland, Unconquerable Fortresses   

    5 Unconquerable Fortresses in Human History 

    Source: http://urbantitan.com/5-unconquerable-fortresses-in-human-history/

    Throughout the history we have always seen and learned that there is no end to human achievement and that every impossible task can be made possible if you have the courage and determination to overcome it. History is packed with loads of historical wars and fights that have changed the course of history and have affected millions of people. If we go back into time, we find almost the same kind of human ideology that exists today where people ruling the country or states would come up with structures that would defend their kingdom and allow them to overcome the mighty power of their enemies.

    Castles and fortresses have played a very important role in defending a particular kingdom or a state and therefore most of the mighty warriors and rulers have made sure that they capture or build a king of magnificent structure that would allow their army to keep a watch on their enemies from a distance. Though, there are many fortifications and fortresses that have been captured and overthrown by the rival army, there are still many such fortresses that are not only difficult to capture because of their unique location but almost impossible to conquer. Let’s checkout some of the famous fortresses that have still remained unconquerable and have stood the test of time.

    1. Masada – Israel

    Since we are talking about some of the unconquerable castles and fortresses in the world than we cannot miss out this awesome structure that has really stood the test of time. Masada is the name of site where you will find various fortifications and palaces. The site is built on top of an isolated rock plateau in Israel and is very near to the Dead Sea. Masada sits on the eastern edge of the cliff which is 1300 feet high which makes it one of the most difficult fortresses to conquer.

    In fact, there were only a few people who were able to make it to the top because the elevation of the cliff is very steep and does not provide any support to the people who are climbing up. The plateau has many other towers and storehouses that were used for the accommodation of the people on the top. Apart from that, Masada also has a place for keeping the weapons and cisterns which would be filled by rainwater. As per the history, Masada was used by Jewish rebels to fight and harass Romans.

    2. Alamut – Iran

    Another such fortress that have remained unconquerable throughout its history is Alamut which also means Eagle’s Nest.
    The fortress is built on a high mountain which was almost impossible to climb and even if attempts were made to climb the Alamut, it would take enough time for the person to make it to the top which means that the soldiers on the top have enough time to lock and kill their targets.
    Alamut in Northern Iran
    Alamut is located in the central Alborz Mountains near Kazvin Province which is just hundred kilometers from today’s Tehran in Iran. The fortress was built by Hamdollah Mostowfi at the height of 2100 meters and there was only one way up to the fortress which was heavily guarded by the soldiers and warriors which makes that route impossible to penetrate. The other sides of Alamut was naturally protected because it has steep gravel slope which means that soldiers going through that route would fall into the valley if they miss a step. The fortress was well maintained and had a superb network of water supply and food storage for the entire army. In 1090 the fortress was occupied by powerful Hashshashins (Assassins) who were able to win many other historic fights and battles because of Alamut.

    3. Janjira – India

    India is the land of kings and emperors and therefore you will find loads of palaces, forts and fortress here.

    imgsource wikipedia

    Though, there are many such fortifications in India that have played a significant role in the development of a particular kingdom or a state but Murud-Janjira remains on top of the list when it comes to undefeated fortress in India. Though, on the first look the fortress looks like a very common fortress that can be conquered easily but that is not the case because of its unique location. The fortress is like an island surrounded by water from all sides and therefore it gives a clear picture to the army inside the fort of any intruders coming through the sea. This fortress was originally built by Fisherman Kings of Konkan to combat against the Muslim rulers in 1490. However, the word Janjira comes from Arabic word Jazeera which means an island. The fort was later captured by Shivaji and it became one of the headquarters for the Maratha Empire.

    4. Malbork Castle – Poland

    imgsource-wikipedia

    Castle Teutonic Order in Malbork is next on the list of unconquerable fortress in human history.

    The castle now is better known as Malbork Castle because it is situated in Malbork. However, the castle was built by the Teutonic Order who were knights interested in helping sick and injured Catholics in Poland. The castle remains as one of the classic examples of medieval castle and today it has been named as UNESCO World Heritage Site in Poland. The castle also holds the record of world’s largest brick gothic castle. The castle was built in 1274 and was named as Marienburg after the Virgin Mary. The castle remains undefeated till date because of its unique location. The surrounding areas near the castle are very flat and does not give any chance to the enemy to hide and therefore the warriors have ample of time to get ready and prepare the war before the enemy approaches from distance.

    5. Palanok Castle – Ukraine

    The Palanok Castle is also known as Mukachevo Castle and it also stands still proudly today as one of the fortress that have remained undefeated and unconquerable.

    imgsource-wapediea

    The castle is intelligently designed and is located on a volcanic hill which gives this castle a unique location to safeguard itself from intruders and enemies. The castle was built by French engineers and has also remained the residential place of the Royal family. The castle has also been used as a political prison. The castle is divided into low, medium and high castle where the high castle is lavishly decorated for the Royal family. Today, this impregnable castle has been turned into a museum for the people to see.

     
  • Nyenius 6:20 am on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Microsoft Office, Remove Background   

    Remove Background from Photos using Microsoft Office 

    Source: http://www.riyaz.net/blog/erase-background-picture-without-photoshop/technology/1945/

    Now you can use Microsoft Office to easily remove background from digital photographs. Microsoft Office 2010 has intelligent image editing tools that can help you extract images from complex or cluttered backgrounds.

    Remove background without Photoshop

    Adobe Photoshop and other popular image editing software like GIMP have tools like background eraser or extract filters that allow you to erase complicated background images from digital photos. However, now Microsoft Office has in-built image editing features that include background removal options. Thus you can do some of the advanced image editing stuff without having to use Photoshop.

    Tutorial: How to Remove Background from Photos Without Photoshop

    Background Removal options in Microsoft Office 2010

    Simply drag and drop the image you wish to edit into Word, Excel, PowerPoint or Outlook. Click on Picture Tools or Format tab and choose Remove Background. The unwanted portions of the image like background and other distracting details can be automatically removed.

    remove-background-pictureYou can use the automatic background removal or you can further refine the areas to remove by drawing lines to indicate what portions to keep and what portions to remove.

    Once you have chosen the areas to remove, click on Keep Changes to remove background. To save the new image, simply right-click on the image and choose Save as Picture and you can save the edited image as JPG or PNG to your hard drive. To save multiple images from Office documents to your hard disk at once check out the article on extracting multiple images from Word documents.

    Thus we have learned the simplest way to remove background from images without having to use digital image editing software like Photoshop.

    Source:

     
  • Nyenius 6:09 am on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Grizzly Bear, Grizzly Bear Flu, John Cusack, John Hammond   

    5 ways we think the world is going to end. 

    Source: http://www.thecaptainsmemos.com/issues/5-ways-we-think-the-world-is-going-to-end/

    December 12, 2012 is a date that has people scratching your heads. According to ancient Mayan calendars, that is the end of the world as we know it. (Cut it out R.E.M.) Who the bloody hell knows what is going to happen when that date comes around. Will people all over the world go bonkers thinking, “Oh my God, the world is going to end!?” Maybe. Just maybe.

    2012 5 ways we think the world is going to end.

    The only true person who knows what happens on that day is John Cusack. As we have seen in the film, 2012, he gets into several near death experiences while the world is ending but somehow miraculously escapes them all and as we’ve seen in Hot Tub Time Machine, he can travel through time. So what better person to ask than John Cusack himself. After several attempts to call, one black eye from his security guard and a restraining order against TCM we are unable to truly find out what will happen. So, we will turn to the next best thing; figuring this shit out for ourselves.

    We sat down one Sunday afternoon over some tea and biscuits and had a very intellectual conversation about how we think the world will end in 2012. It was surprising enough with what we came up with even though no one walked away with any broken bones as that’s usually what happens during one of our “discussions”. So sit back, grab a bag of beer and a can of chips and ponder how your semi-awesome life will end. Hell, who knows one of these could actually be the Earth’s fate.

    comet 5 ways we think the world is going to end.

    How it happens: A Comet
    What will happen: Your probably thinking an asteroid will come and destroy earth on that fateful day. That’s too obvious if you ask me. So we went for the next best thing, a comet. Comets are those large glowing rocket looking thingies (That’s a scientific term!) you see in the sky every several some odd years. Usually they are far enough away from Earth not to be worried but close enough to see with the nude eye. It truly is a fantastic spectacle. Almost exactly like watching a bum beat up a dog to get that last piece of meat from a steak that was thrown out only to have a bird come by and swipe it out of his hands forcing him to throw rocks and yell like a caveman. It’s ok Dad, you’ll get another chance.
    What is most scary about a comet is that it is unpredictable. It is made of mostly ice, rocks and urine which just so happens to be the same ingredients for crack cocaine. It is unpredictable because of the random movements that occur because of the ice shooting out bursts of air. A comet could be traveling one direction one minute, then bam a complete 90 degree change the next. Comets travel at roughly 30 miles per second which to say the least is fucking fast as shit. They can be up to 6 miles in circumference as well. So, if a 6 mile rock hits the earth at 30 mp/s just imagine having sex with Christina Hendricks, now picture the complete opposite. Yea, something like that.
    How to prevent it: Fly a Viking atop a T-Rex atop a shark with a laser beam on it’s head into outer space, shoot it with the said laser making a hole in the comet, knocking it off course saving everyone on Earth from certain death. Well, almost everyone.
    Percentage of likeliness that this will actually happen: 87.2%

    grizzly 5 ways we think the world is going to end.

    How it happens: The Plague which in turn becomes a Zombie Apocalypse (Sort of)
    What will happen: Remember Bird Flu? Remember Swine Flu? Those are just appetizers as to what’s next. 2012 will be the year of the Grizzly Bear Flu which is more popularly known around these parts as, Beastman AIDS. It is much more dangerous than the past 2 influenza’s. What the Grizzly Bear Flu does to a person is nothing like we’ve seen before. The virus attacks the brain making the person think they actually are a Grizzly Bear and injects a massive amount of testosterone into their system. The first few days it is a slow progression towards full blown Beastman AIDS. Your appetite for honey and fish becomes greater, after every few words spoken you start to growl and you start to grow an amazing beard, regardless of gender. After the first week, you pretty much are completely infected. You lose all human thoughts and actions. You shit while walking (Which I’ve always wanted to do, FYI), you sleep in trees and you become extremely extremely protective of your personal space, such as a Grizzly Bear would. That is how the human race will come to an end, everyone who is infected will attack those who are infected essentially killing them and making them infected. Eventually all humans will be wiped out and the ones left infected will kill off each other since there is nothing else to kill. The only animal remaining on earth will be this. His plan had finally worked.
    How to prevent it: Don’t have sex with Grizzly Bear’s or anyone who has had sex with a Grizzly Bear as for it is too late for them and you will become infected. Plus no one should be fucking Grizzly Bears, that’s got to be illegal or something.
    Percentage of likeliness that this will actually happen: 23.1%

    blackhole 5 ways we think the world is going to end.

    How it happens: A Black Hole
    What will happen: So there are these things in outer space called black holes. What they are, no one truly knows. Well, extremely smart people know what they are and I’m sure if you go look it up you too can find out what they are but for the sake of this post, no one knows what they truly are. They apparently can suck entire planets and sun’s into it sending them to God knows where. Presumably a place much like a soup kitchen right after it has run out of soup and there is still a line. A very dark place. Not even light can escape a black hole’s grasp. Our planet is located in the Milky Way Galaxy and in the past 2 years there has been confirmation of a black hole in our galaxy. Our theory is that the black hole one day is gonna be all like, “I’m so depressed, I have no friends and everyone hates me.” Then it’s going to go into a state of deep depression. The issue here is this black hole eats when it is depressed. So it starts to eat and eat and eat all the planets and suns around it and eventually becomes a supermassive black hole. This can be compared to an obese person. There are no upsides and you have to roll them in flour just to find where they are wet. So what does an obese person like to do besides lounge on the couch, breathing heavily while salivating over the deep fried cheesecakePaula Dean just made? They like to eat. Same applies to a supermassive black hole. They like to eat…a lot. There is nothing more dangerous than a depressed, obese supermassive black hole. So pretty much Earth eventually gets eaten by this black hole and we all become it’s poop.
    How to prevent it: Become friends with the black hole so it doesn’t go into depression therefore eating everything in it’s path. Or you could just pay for a stomach bypass surgery, but you’re probably better off becoming it’s friend.
    Percentage of likeliness that this will actually happen: 57.7%

    dinoriders 5 ways we think the world is going to end.

    How it happens: Dinosaurs will initially take over, then Aliens will domesticate the Dino’s and become ultimate rulers
    What will happen: If John Hammond was real, I’m pretty sure he would have figured out how to make Dinosaurs real again much like he did in the 1993 epic motion picture, Jurassic Park. And much like the motion picture, the Dinosaurs would break free and start eating humans. It’s inevitable. The current theory floating around the TCM office is that John Hammond was in fact an alien; as in an extraterrestrial. Don’t you think that if it was possible to make Dinosaurs in the real world, that it would have been done already? Dr. Hammond used his superior brain quality to figure out a way to install living, breathing Dinosaurs into present day 1993. We think his ulterior motive was to have the Dinosaurs take over the world. He would then call his alien brothers and sisters to come down to earth and ride the Dinosaurs killing any remaining human in their path shooting red and blue lasers. Sound familiar at all? Well it should. There was a little TV show called Dino-Riders back in the 80s. An alien race teleported to Earth training the Dinosaurs to become their weapons trying to kill off the human population. Funny, who knew that a little old 14 episode cartoon series would predict Earth’s fate? I did.
    How to prevent it: Kill John Hammond.
    Percentage of likeliness that this will actually happen: 8.5%

    drunk 5 ways we think the world is going to end.

    How it happens: Someone wakes up from a drunken stupor and realizes Earth was all a dream
    What will happen: Here’s an example. You get very drunk, pass out and have a very weird but vivid dream about you being a hot dog street vendor. You go by the name of JoJo’s Hot Dogs. You have many different types of hot dogs that the public loves and you are raking in the dough. There is no recollection of your other life though. You are so happy in your dream that you pee yourself in your sleep state. You wake up moist and drunk thinking, what was that? Was that me dreaming about JoJo and his fantastic hot dogs or is it JoJo dreaming about me urinating myself? Some mind bending shit right there. Still can’t grasp it? Think about the movie the Matrix staring the greatest actor ever, Keanu Reeves. He sleeps and becomes this super ninja kicking ass all over a world that doesn’t exist. When he wakes up he is in some shit-tastic world that pretty much sucks. Same applies to this drunk who is asleep dreaming all of us. In your dream, it may seem like hours go by but in reality maybe 30 seconds goes by. If this were true though, I’m sure this guy would have woken up by now and not allow Michael Jackson to touch all those little boys. It is an interesting thing to ponder, not MJ being a pedder ass, but the fact that this could all be one big dream.
    How to prevent it: Somehow keep feeding drunkie a steady supply of sleeping pills. Not too much or he dies, not enough and we die.
    Percentage of likeliness that this will actually happen: 2%

     
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