The Massachusetts Executive Office of Transportation has published some animated 3D renderings of the proposed stations on the Green Line extension, which is scheduled to begin service in 2015. Pictured above is the Union Square station, which the Commonwealth is proposing be located along the existing Fitchburg Line railroad right-of-way... that means you'd have to walk up the hill by the Dunkin' Donuts to get to the station, something Union Square transit advocates object to (it's harder for elderly and disabled folks to reach it). The advocates' alternative, though, is to run the Green Line as a streetcar directly into Union Square from about where the Target store is located at the end of Somerville Ave. That's not likely to fly.
There's a bunch more information on the web from the Commonwealth, from the City of Somerville, as well as from Union Square Main Streets, a great neighborhood advocacy organization.
Not to buy in to the hysteria or anything, but I've heard a couple of reports that WHO, the World Health Organization, has raised its pandemic alert level, but no one explained exactly what the levels mean. Here's their explanation: http://www.who.int/csr/disease/avian_influenza/phase/en/index.html
Special bonus fact: People I know who work in epidemiology (e.g. Steve Goodreau) refer to WHO as "WHOm" when it is the object of a preposition.
[caption id="attachment_761" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="The WHO influenza pandemic alert is currently at phase 4."][/caption]
Ouch. Posted on April 27th, 2009 at 10:26 am by Steve
I don't normally do verbatim reposts, but you have to read this from blogger IOZ in Pittsburgh:
Listen. As a nation, we arrogate to ourselves the right to send flying robots over any country in the world and murder people, to topple governments, to impose economic blockades on entire nations of millions of people, and the great moral flap is slapping around some prisoners? Now I am not saying that torture is anything but abhorrent, wholly morally repulsive, but fuck you, America. The so-called debate over torture has preempted the already under-argued, under-reported actuality: that as we bicker about "enhanced interrogation techniques" and whether or not Barack Obama is a good guy for releasing them or a bad guy for not sending a bunch of spook hacks to jail, we are all over the world, killing the fuck out of people and blowing that shit up. The idea that our interrogations are a unique moral stain is cracked and insane. Waterboarding is not the disease, merely one observable symptom of a deeper and more pernicious pathology.
I'm skipping around Vimeo in an infographic mood tonight. Here's a history of the Internet. Apparently foreigners had something to do with it?:
History of the Internet
And a thoroughly modern retelling of Red Riding Hood: Slagsmålsklubben
More excellent news from the Pentagon: their new robot helicopter sniper is working and almost ready for field deployment!
ARSS is literally point-and-shoot for the operator on the ground, using a videogame-type controller. The software makes all the necessary corrections, and the system should ensure first-round kills at several hundred yards. The secret is in the control system and stabilized turret (on the right in the picture above), which is currently fitted with a powerful RND Manufacturing Edge 2000 rifle specifically designed for sniping work, using the heavyweight .338 Lapua Magnum cartridge.
I find it indescribably awesome that our government is building and deploying robot snipers so that teenagers playing video games can kill poor people in cities anywhere in the world!
Unusual personal post: I'm going to my first marching band rehearsal next Monday night, and I'll be playing the big bass drum!
That will seriously tick the box on one of my lifelong ambitions.
Up next: pulling the big lever on The Joker's Wild!