The 1st Question - 22 Dec 2009 - Questions

1) He was a philanthropist from Kansas City who started off poor but made his fortune in cable television and long-distance calling. Given a free dinner when he was down on his luck, this act inspired him to pay it forward eventually giving out $1.3 million dollars during his lifetime. His philanthropy has been supported and recognized by a number of well-known people, including Dick Butkus who actually helped him out as an elf. Who was this man who inspired the Secret Santa tradition?

2) Despero, and Professor X had the power of using their minds to control objects. Is it far off in the future when the rest of us mere mortals will be able to do the same? In this game a nozzle of air upon which a ball floats over a board and through obstacles, is actually controlled by the human mind. Players put on a headset with a forehead sensor and clips that attach to the earlobes. These accessories allow the game to read your brain waves changing them into information that the game board can understand What is this first-person thinker game called?

3) It increases efficiency by understanding of patterns integral and necessary to nature and humanity’s working systems. It describes a rectangle with a length roughly one and a half times its width. Many artists and architects have fashioned their works around it, the Pyramids, the Parthenon and the Mona Lisa. The eyes scan an image the fastest when it is shaped with this proportion and understanding of it is proving compelling in unifying vision, thought and movement under a single law of nature's design. What is it?

4) This uses a flexible technology platform for tissue construction and Organs on demand for replacement surgery. It allows scientists to place cells of almost any type into a desired pattern. The 3D bio-printer has one print head for placing human cells, and the other for placing a hydrogel, scaffold, or support matrix. The cells used by the device need to be the cells of what is being regenerated – building an artery requires arterial cells for example. Because the patient’s own cells are used, the new organ will not be rejected by the body. Where were the engineers who worked on the project Organovo from?

5) She is the daughter of a magician and a mystic plus a direct descendant of the alchemist Nicholas Flamel and Nostradamus. her childhood friend gave her the da Vinci's notebooks. She makes her living as a stage illusionist and was the subject of the first major comic book crossover in 1964 beginning her –somewhat passionate and of course difficult relationship to Batman. Superheroes have complicated romances. A powerful sorceress she usually casts spells by speaking verbal commands backwards. Who wears a top hat, is a member of the Justice League and has a great pair of legs?

6) Kepler Motors Motion was founded by the only living person to hold world speed records on land and water. Russ Wicks' company has used the Dubai International Motor Show to unveil its 800horsepower supercar. It launches the Motion Car to 60mph in under 2.5 seconds, with a top speed more than 200mph. Incredible specs, great looks and an impressive bloodline, but it’s not horse racing. And if you have to ask how much, you probably can’t afford it. How many of these ultra-high-performance exclusive hand – built supercars will be built?

7) This DC Comics character debuted in 1955. He can shapeshift, he can alter the chemical makeup of his body, be invisible, and pass through solid objects. He is a powerful telepath, capable of both perceiving the thoughts of others and of projecting his own. He often acts as a "switchboard" between minds in order to coordinate the Justice League's actions Superman once called him "the most powerful being on the face of the earth". When a flame-wielding villainess named Scorch, wanted his telepathic help in dealing with her own mental issues, she helped him redefine his traditional aversion to fire, he is now invulnerable to flames unless they are "flames of passion". Again, superheroes have complicated love lives! Although in Kingdome Come, he was shattered by human weakness. Who is J'onn J'onzz, also referred to as?

8) Cyborg insects are now equipped with a transponder that uses this fuel source. The prototype microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) transmitter—could operate autonomously for decades. The goal is to power the insects developed for DARPA. The HI-MEMS program, which is approaching its fourth year, has already grown several kinds of insects—moths and beetles—with implanted control electronics. With such controls, they can be driven by a remote operator for” stealth applications” and disaster response. What is this new bioengineered bug powered by?

9) An American science fiction writer who also had ground-breaking science fiction anthologies with Dangerous Visions, he was born in Cleveland, Ohio and moved to California in 1962, where he wrote for TV including Star Trek for the award-winning episode, “The City on the Edge of Forever". He also wrote for the “Flying Nun” and the “Man from Uncle” Given enough time he could have written for the Nun from Uncle ……. He used the pseudonym Cordwainer Bird to alert members of the public when he felt his written contribution had been mangled beyond repair by others. Who was he? 

10) Most soldiers don't sign up to fight deadly viruses and bacteria, but that's what more than 2,300 young Seventh-Day Adventists did when drafted by the U.S. Army. As conscientious objectors during the Cold War who interpreted the Bible's commandment "Thou shalt not kill" very literally, many volunteers instead chose to serve as guinea pigs for testing vaccines against biological weapons. Volunteers recalled being quite sick from diseases such as the mysterious Q fever. Happily, none died during the secretive trials which took place from 1954 to 1973. What was this operation called??

11) You are cooking something in the microwave, and you are standing there totally bored out of your mind. Well, there’s hope! Researchers in Japan have come up with the perfect solution for those of us who need to be entertained every minute of every day by putting a video player on your microwave screen. So, when the cooking time is entered, a special Adobe AIR app retrieves a video from YouTube keeping you entertained down to the very last second. However, be warned because they are chosen based purely on their running time, there’s no way to control which clips are displayed. That could cause problems for those with weak hearts or impressionable minds. What won the Outstanding Performance Award and the Jury’s Special Award in Japan’s Mashup Awards?

12) Bush vs. Kerry Boxing is a boxing video game for mobile phones. In it you choose to play either Bush or Kerry to fight out the 2004 Skull and Crossbones United States Presidential election. The candidate chosen must fight through a number of preliminary rounds (including an ugly one with Dick Oil Can Cheney) in order to eventually fight the opposition. The game is a first-person boxing game, as opposed to a first-person voting game, which we saw in the Florida election in 2000. Seen from behind the player's gloves, Bush vs. Kerry Boxing features many prominent politicians from around the time of the 2004 Presidential election. Hilary Clinton is the Referee and who is the ring girl?

13) Software designer Boris Smus, has created something to help you pound out the rhythm you feel turning an ordinary item into a something special. The prototype system consists of two square force sensitive resistors located on the knee of your jeans leg that are hooked up to an Arduino device and a breadboard that sits inside the pocket. The wires connecting are held in place with electrical tape. Every time a pad is hit the impact is relayed to a computer. The system is built entirely into a pair of pants, so it isn’t transferable to other items of clothing. Yes they are Drum pants, what is the first descriptive word to their title?

14) Two portable pocket devices come together for an amazing new invention, the FlashHarp, which combines the Flash drive and the harmonica. The FlashHarp is a fully functional 3 a quarter inch, 10-hole harmonica made from stainless steel, brass reeds and a plastic comb, just like real ones. At one end protrudes the USB connection of the flash drive, which is covered by a cap when not plugged in. It's currently available in two digital storage sizes, 2GB and 4GB, but only in the key of C, who invented it?

15) This is the robot we can all feel close to here in Second Life, and so the clue in the name, and it’s from Ford, a tactile robotic arm used to evaluate the interior of car models. The intent is to make the testing process more uniform and scientific. Ford says it's the first carmaker to use a robot to test interiors. To better respond to customer expectations for quality interiors, testing roughness and temperature on points like the steering wheel, knobs and armrests manipulating knobs and adjusting air vents. Easier than getting some smelly laid off factory workers in to the new vehicles to try them out. The Robotized Unit for Tactility and Haptics, is better known as what? 


16) A key factor is determining the eco-friendliness of any biofuel is how much energy is required to produce it. If the energy to produce it comes from fossil fuels, which happens more often than not, the cost is too high, and the environmental benefits of the fuel can be questionable. Researchers have now developed a process that removes a key obstacle to producing lower-cost, renewable biofuels by programming a photosynthetic microbe to self-destruct. Photosynthetic microbes, called cyanobacteria and have already proven attractive as a source of renewable biofuels because they are easy to genetically manipulate and have a potentially higher yield than any plant crops currently being used. What are they also known as?

17) Blood loss from battlefield injuries causes about half of U.S. troop fatalities so, suspended animation might work in cases of near death. Hydrogen sulfide could block the body’s ability to use oxygen creating a kind of “suspended animation” where hearts stop beating and wounds don’t bleed. If this research works out, future soldiers might carry a pre-loaded syringe similar to the EpiPen used by people who suffer from life-threatening allergic reactions. Instant hibernation might also be an option, and another project hypothesized that humans could one day mimic those abilities of this animal. Which critters who share a pancreatic enzyme with us humans, might be able to pave that way to something like instant sleep mode?

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