Friday, November 21, 2008

Paleontology and Cyberspace, Christmas

I watched some TV last night. The book I am reading has a good story line but it isn't very slick writing and isn't holding me too well. What I watched was the TV programme The Nature of Things which I have mentioned before. The first segment was about The Lost People of Baja California, Mexico who once were numerous and have disappeared completely. They are doing all kinds of interesting research on their bones and DNA including samples from some people living today. Following the microcondial DNA of various people. (Through the female line). This was part of the Adventurers Series I referred you to recently click here to see more about the Pericû of the Baja Peninsula. The second segment was all about hackers. We all know about hackers, we take our precautions and hope we will be OK. But after watching the programme Web Warriors, who cares about our little systems. It appears that we (as in our countries) are in considerable danger from Russian crime syndicates and now, more and more, from the Chinese military. If you click here you can see what I am talking about. They also talked about a 15 yr old from Montreal who shut down Yahoo and several other major networks and says he (now an adult) could do it again today because no-one has done anything about it, plus the suspicion, not confirmed, that a major blackout which took place in the States a few years ago was caused by a worm, this becomes very worrying technology. The Russian mafia hires hackers so does the Chinese government. There is another worm sitting out there controlling thousands, if not millions of computers, unknown to the owners, which, as yet, no-one knows what else it is meant to do. But the author of this particular worm has so much power at his fingertips that he could do more or less anything in the cyberworld. This programme was followed by the news which talked about the stock markets plunging yet more today and I couldn't help wondering if any of this current disaster could be contributed to by these virii and worms. One thing I was told - if you use a router (which I do) you are less vulnerable to attack. I don't know how true this is. On a lighter note, I think we may go bowling this afternoon. Just for the fun of it. Its a combination of fun, practice and exercise. I can't wait til I get my new bowling balls. I have no idea when that will be of course. I am so glad I don't live in the Buffalo area at the moment. They are expecting loads of snow in the next two days, something in the region of 1 - 2 ft. It will make the owners of ski runs ecstatic, but it won't be much fun for driving. I forgot to mention I bought some President's Choice Mini Mince Fruit Tarts to try. We had a couple each the other night, they are quite small, I quite liked them, Matt wasn't keen, he said there wasn't enough mince. However, if you want mince pies and don't have time to make your own, I think they would be very good. Of course if you don't live in Canada and have access to President's Choice products, I am afraid you are out of luck. Think I'll go have a mince pie. Looking through my Best Ever Christmas book, I found a recipe for a Mushroom and Thyme Pâté which I though sounded good and might be good for our shindig next month too. Mushroom and Thyme Pâté 60 g butter 1 sml onion, chopped 1 garlic clove, crushed 1 Tbs thyme leaves 250 g chicken livers, chopped 2 rashers bacon, chopped 60 g small mushroom caps 1/4 cup port 3/4 cup thickened cream Melt butter in medium pan, add onion, garlic and theyme, stir fry for 2 minutes or until onion is tender. Add livers and bacon, stir-fry for 3 minutes or until browned. Add mushrooms and port, stir fry 10 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated. Place mixture into a blender or food processor bowl, add cream, process to a smooth texture. Spoon into a serving dish. Store, covered with plastic wrap, in fridge until needed. Pâté can be made up to 1 week ahead. It is not suitable for freezing. Have a great day.

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