Archive for April, 2006

First Sudoku World Champion = Woman from the Czech Republic

Wednesday, April 26th, 2006


Jana Tylova beat the  odds, and, as the only woman finalist, solved the puzzle below (after many others) in under 15 minutes to win the first ever Sudoku Championship in Lucca Italy.

final sudoku 

Hint: you need to guess to solve this final puzzle.

Class of 1970 = Where are you now

Saturday, April 22nd, 2006

Science Senior 1970

I am showing my (old) age, but an email from my HS alum association got me to looking at an extensive email list of fellow 1970 Science grads – lots of MDs and PhDs!  I looked up friends (who today probably wouldn’t know me from Adam).  Some I couldn’t trace.  Here are a few I found.

It is interesting to ponder that I often used to lunch with 3 doctors – Phil Bach, a heart specialist in Sacramento; Michael Fifer, director of Coronary Care at MGH (he works in the same building as Alice!); and Jay Turkewitz, a neurologist in New Orleans specializing in HIV.

bach     fifer     Turkewitz

I also knew Stephen Drucker, Editor in Chief of House Beautiful; Paul Mailman, who went to MIT, joined Mensa, and worked with my sister at Atex; Noah Mendelsohn, distinguished IBM research engineer, who was just as handsome as a kid as he is today; and Susan Wessler, disinguished Professor and plant genetics researcher – she has a lab named after her(!) at U of Georgia, who I, and every other straight male, had a crush on.

drucker     mailman    mendelsohn     wessler 

SciFi Quiz = Serenity

Thursday, April 20th, 2006
You scored as Serenity (Firefly). You like to live your own way and don’t enjoy when anyone but a friend tries to tell you should do different. Now if only the Reavers would quit trying to skin you.        

Serenity (Firefly)
Deep Space Nine (Star Trek)
Babylon 5 (Babylon 5)
Moya (Farscape)
Millennium Falcon (Star Wars)
Enterprise D (Star Trek)
Galactica (Battlestar: Galactica)
Andromeda Ascendant (Andromeda)
SG-1 (Stargate)
Nebuchadnezzar (The Matrix)
Bebop (Cowboy Bebop)
FBI’s X-Files Division (The X-Files)

Your Ultimate Sci-Fi Profile II: which sci-fi crew would you best fit in? (pics)
created with

I don’t seem to fit with any crew very highly.  Guess I need my own craft & crew.

Flying Toaster SS Crew

100 Years of Animation += Thank You Mr. Blackton

Tuesday, April 18th, 2006

ren & stimpy johnk tex avery version of peter lorre

On April 6, 1906, 12 days before the San Francisco earthquake, cartoonist James Stuart Blackton and Thomas Edison released the first animation – a film of a man puffing cigar smoke while his sweetheart rolled her eyes in disapproval, a dog jumping through a hoop, and a juggler. They used Edison’s newly invented Kinestoscope (which Edison had patented the same year, 1897, as the phonograph ), and called the film The Humorous Phases of Funny Faces. Blackton had studied Edweard Muybridge’s pioneering sequential photographs for inspiration.

beckerman book Muybridge rower patent

You can study the book, Animation, The Whole Story by Howard Beckerman , animation professor at the School of Visual Arts in New York. Or you can read all kinds of stuff , the blog of Ren Hoek and Stimpson J. Cat creator and animator extraordinare John Kricfalusi (pronounced like my name, ‘JohnK’ :-O, he also happens to be of Hungarian origin, though he was born in Canada – ‘falusi’ means ‘from the town of’ and ‘s’ is pronounced ‘sh’ in Hungarian).

Ren was fashioned after Hungarian actor Peter Lorre , an inspiration for many cartoons (see Tex Avery’s wonderful rendition). During the Hayes Commission investigation of the late 40s, Lorre was asked to name anyone suspicious he had met since coming to the United States. Lorre responded with a list of everyone he knew. As a young man in Vienna, Lorre was a student of Sigmund Freud. Alice was a student of Sophie Freud, Sigmund’s granddaughter.