Author Archives: richardbrenneman

Map of the day: Ebola outbreak cases hit 10,114


From today’s World Health Organization Ebola Response Roadmap Situation Report [PDF]. Click on the image to enlarge:

BLOG Ebola map

Chart of the day II: The Ebola epidemiology curve


The latest trend line from the European Centre of Disease Prevention and Control:

Distribution of cases of EVD by week of reporting in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Nigeria and Senegal, weeks 48/2013 to 43/2014

Distribution of cases of EVD by week of reporting in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Nigeria and Senegal, weeks 48/2013 to 43/2014

Sci Fi with a twist: From European Space Agency


Starring Lord Peter Baelish — er Aiden Gillen — and Aisling Franciosi and using the latest in CGI technology, the video promotes a landmark upcoming rendezvous in space, the 12 November attempt to land an instrument package on a comet as it hurtles through space.

From the European Space Agency:

Ambition

Program notes:

Ambition is a collaboration between Platige Image and ESA. Directed by Tomek Bagin’ski and starring Aiden Gillen and Aisling Franciosi, Ambition was shot on location in Iceland, and screened on 24 October 2014 during the British Film Institute’s celebration of Sci-Fi: Days of Fear and Wonder, at the Southbank, London.

More from BBC News:

The European Space Agency has released a short scifi movie to promote its audacious Rosetta comet mission.

Called, suitably, Ambition, it stars Game of Thrones’ Aidan Gillen and actress Aisling Franciosi as master and apprentice on an alien world.

In the seven-minute drama, the pair discuss the presence of water on planets and the origin of life.

These are themes Esa’s Rosetta probe hopes to address in its study of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

Next month, the spacecraft will drop a small robot on to the surface of the 4km-wide ice body to analyse its chemistry.

Theory holds that comets may have been responsible for delivering water to the planets early in the Solar System’s history. They could even have delivered important chemistry that helped to kick-start biology. The mission intends to test these ideas.

Like all cinematic releases these days, the film comes with it’s own “making of” featurette:

The making of ‘Ambition’

Program notes:

The making of the short film Ambition, a collaboration between Platige Image and ESA. Directed by Tomek Bagin’ski and starring Aiden Gillen and Aisling Franciosi, Ambition was shot on location in Iceland, produced in Poland, and screened on 24 October 2014 during the British Film Institute’s celebration of Sci-Fi: Days of Fear and Wonder, at the Southbank, London.

Chart of the day: A notable social shift


From the Pew Research Center:

BLOG Pot

Quote of the day: America’s imperiled kids


From the abstract of a stunning new analysis published in JAMA Pediatrics:

Children account for 73.5 million Americans (24%), but 8% of federal expenditures. Data on health and health care indicate that child well-being in the United States has been in decline since the most recent recession. Childhood poverty has reached its highest level in 20 years, 1 in 4 children lives in a food-insecure household, 7 million children lack health insurance, a child is abused or neglected every 47 seconds, and 1 in 3 children is overweight or obese. Five children are killed daily by firearms, 1 in 5 experiences a mental disorder, racial/ethnic disparities continue to be extensive and pervasive, and major sequester cuts and underfunding of pediatric research have damaged our global leadership in biomedical research and hobbled economic growth.

Inside the Ebola ward: The struggle in Liberia


Another superb video report on the Ebola crisis from Ben C. Solomon of the New York Times, this time from inside an ETU [Ebola Treatment Unit] near the Liberian capital.

One of those featured is Colin Banks, a Stanford University emergency room physician who says he was impelled to come on hearing of the extent of the crisis.

From the New York Times:

Inside the Ebola Ward | Virus Outbreak 2014

Program notes:

Workers at the International Medical Corps treatment center in Suakoko, Liberia, use faith, hard work and caution as they face a stream of sick people in this remote hilltop east of Monrovia.

Produced by: Ben C. Solomon

California drought: Still dry as a bone


From the U.S. Drought Monitor [click on the image to embiggen], and with no change from last week:

BLOG Drought