Friday, July 8, 2011

Missing DaVinci Painting Found After Centuries

Experts in the United States and Europe have examined a painting believed to have been created byLeonardo DaVinci and declared it original.


Painted on a wood panel, the work had been cleaned and refreshed over the years by amateurs using techniques that may have harmed the work of art. As a result, it was heavily overpainted and gloomy.

The current owners of the painting, a consortium that took a chance on its authenticity, recently turned down a $100 Million offer, hoping to auction it later for $200 Million or more.

(Via ARTnews.)

For Only the Second Time in History, Mankind Has Eradicated a Disease

An article in the Health section of the NY Times reports on another disease that humankind has made extinct. Rinderpest, an animal plague, has been a scourge of livestock for thousands of years. It is a virulant relative of the measles and had a mortality rate amongst infected herds of 95 percent.

Dr. Juan Lubroth, chief veterinary officer at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations says that the role of veterinarians in protecting human society is severely underrated.


The pronouncement was made on June 26 in Rome, Italy, where the FAO is headquartered.

(Via NY Times.)

Make Your Life Better, 30 Days at a Time

Google's Matt Cutts presents the idea of improving your life by making your own 30-day challenges. He proposes that adding and/or subtracting something in your life for at least 30 days can lead to a number of improvements. At the end of 30 days, make more changes.

Citing his own experience, he experienced a better quality of life and even got into better shape. Of course, that is dependent on what your 30-day challenge is.

Some examples you might consider are:

  • Bike to work for 30 days
  • Take a new photo every day
  • Give up sweets
  • Write a few pages of a story every day

The video is of a presentation given at the 2011 Google I/O event.

YouTube - ‪Google I/O 2011: Ignite‬‏


Monkey steals camera, takes self-portraits

In Indonesia, a macaque monkey helped himself to a nature photographer's camera, then started snapping photos of himself. Award winning photojournalist, David Slater, was in a small national park on the island of Sulawesi when the event occurred.  "I teamed up with a local guide because I knew about the apes and wanted to photograph them.", David added.

Simian Self Portrait

He and his guide were with the monkeys for about three days. They were accepting of his company and expressed interest in the things he was carrying. It is assumed that the culprit became enamored with his own reflection in the camera lens. Slater later added that most of the hundreds of photographs were not in focus, but a very few were usable.

Photo by monkey

The crested black macaque is an endangered species. It not only suffers from human encroachment and deforestation, but is hunted as bush meat since monkey is considered a delicacy and holiday staple amongst the local non-muslim population.


(Via Monkey steals camera to snap himself - Telegraph: .