kottke.org posts about disease
People are going whole-hog bananas today over a new study in the Annals of Internal Medicine, in which gay men arriving at hospitals and clinics in San Francisco and Boston were showing high incidences of truly nasty drug-resistant staph infections. Let's panic! After all, Matt Drudge is teasing the story with an invented quote: "STRAIN OF SUPERBUG 'MAY BE NEW HIV'..." But that language doesn't actually appear anywhere, much less in the Reuters summary to which he links; it does not even appear in this story that uses that phrase as a headline. Mmm, fake horror! The study began sampling patients four years ago. If this was the new super-plague, we'd all be neck-deep in boils already.
BIRD FLU DANCE WATCH ALERT! This video shows someone doing the "bird flu jamaican dance". Wait, I thought this dance was invented in the Ivory Coast? Is this a new strain of the bird flu dance infecting the Caribbean? The Jamaican dance seems different from the Ivory Coast version. More as I have it on this breaking story.
Update: I'm not so sure the first video I pointed to is the Ivory Coast version of the dance...both videos feature the same song.
Nice overview of what you need to be worried about regarding the bird flu. Right now for your typical non-bird-handling person? Nothing much to worry about.
Two of the biggest pessimists in the business, Bill Joy and Ray Kurzweil, outline their case for not releasing the genome for the 1918 influenza virus. "The genome is essentially the design of a weapon of mass destruction. No responsible scientist would advocate publishing precise designs for an atomic bomb, and in two ways revealing the sequence for the flu virus is even more dangerous."
Bats may be the source of SARS. "Researchers found a virus closely related to the Sars coronavirus in bats from three regions of China".