Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.

5/2/2014

A Grim Game

Filed under: Art,Deep Thoughts,Fun,Life, the Universe, and Everything — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is terribly early in the morning or 6:30 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Crescent

I’ve had a rather grim and brutal week at work, so I’m going to share a rather grim and brutal, but oddly engaging game with you all today.

The game, called Drowning In Problems, is just a little too true to life to be “fun” exactly.  But, it is oddly compelling.  And, it only takes about ten or fifteen minutes to play a round, so it’s not too, too depressing.  It is, however, simple, text-based and created by Minecraft creator Markus…
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1/18/2013

Vitamins from Food

Filed under: By Bread Alone,Fun Work,Life Goals — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Tiger which is terribly early in the morning or 5:52 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is a First Quarter Moon

A healthy mind is a creative mind!

And, let’s face it, a healthy mind is supported by a healthy body.  Exercise is one aspect of that, but at a more fundamental level, properly fueling our bodies and minds is, I think, the most important first step.  Last week, I linked to a site to help you put your diet on autopilot.  This week, I’m suggesting that you maximize your vitamin intake.  Not through taking supplements, though that’s not a bad idea…
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1/11/2013

Put Your Diet on Autopilot

Filed under: Fun,Life Goals,Life, the Universe, and Everything,Red Herrings — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Tiger which is terribly early in the morning or 5:07 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is a New Moon

So, we’re eleven days into the New Year.  How are  your resolutions holding up?

If you’re like most people, you’ve made a personal commitment to eat better and lose weight in the coming year.  But, like most people, that little resolution won’t last through the end of the first quarter.  Well, the good news is that this is easier than committing to adding exercise to your daily routine!  No, the answer isn’t to go out and buy Tim Ferriss’ books, the 4-Hour…
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9/14/2011

Finally, A Cure For This Disease

Filed under: Deep Thoughts,Life, the Universe, and Everything,News and Current Events,Personal — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Rooster which is in the early evening or 6:43 pm for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

No, seriously!

It seems that there’s an new, experimental, gene therapy that may cure cancer.  At least, for two of three test subjects, it cured advanced chronic lymphocytic leukemia.  That’s a type of cancer, incidentally, very similar to the diffuse large B-cell lymphoma that I was diagnosed as having back in 2007.  You can read the full story over at the New York Times, but, here’s the rundown in brief.
The researchers took regular, virus-and-tumor-fighting T-cells from the patients and added specially tailored genes to them which let the T-cells target the cancer cells.  Then, they “dripped” the altered T-cells back into the patients, who had already exhausted all other treatment options, including chemotherapy and bone-marrow transplants.  Ten days later, the first patient got the chills.  And his temperature spiked while his blood pressure dropped.  The doctors moved him to an intensive care unit, not quite sure what was happening to him.  A few weeks later, all his symptoms were gone.  And so was the leukemia.  He was normal.

Granted, there have only been three test cases, including the one I just described, with varying results, but two out of the three had an apparently complete cure of their cancer.  For most of us who have had cancer of any kind, those are pretty damn good odds.  They’re odds that I’d take, should I have cancer again, that’s for sure.
And, frankly, it all sounds like a miracle, like science-fiction come true.

When I was getting chemotherapy, I ordered a t-shirt, really without thinking too much about it.  It was a joke, about the future and how we were promised jetpacks and how the futurists lied to us.  But, when it arrived, I read it more closely.  Here’s what it said:
“they lied to us
this was supposed to be the future
where is my jetpack,
where is my robotic companion,
where is my dinner in pill form,
where is my hydrogen fueled automobile,
where is my nuclear-powered levitating home,
where is my cure for this disease
Well, it looks like the future is now.
Thank God.

 

9/7/2011

I Had Cancer

Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,Deep Thoughts,Life, the Universe, and Everything,Personal — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Monkey which is mid-afternoon or 4:35 pm for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

And, while that IS true, it’s not what this post is about, exactly.

When you have cancer, or have survived cancer, you feel alone.  You feel like there isn’t anyone in the world who understands you or your life or what you went through or are going through now.  But, at the same time, you know there are others.  You’ve seen them in waiting rooms and lines and shuffling in and out of hospital rooms and doctor’s offices.  They are out there.  And, now, a new social networking site aims to help fellow cancer survivors, and cancer patients, find each other.  It’s called I Had Cancer.

So, yeah, I’ve signed up, and even posted a little bit, but I haven’t gotten too far into the “social” part of the site yet, but it’s still in Beta anyway.  So, if you had cancer, have cancer, or know someone who did, or does, check out I Had Cancer.
And, check back here Monday, September 12th, for the next entry in my personal cancer story.

6/30/2008

Flowers for Algernon

Filed under: Deep Thoughts,Life, the Universe, and Everything,News and Current Events,Things to Read — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Tiger which is terribly early in the morning or 5:22 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Crescent

Science-fiction has become science fact yet again.

I know why a lot of writers have stopped trying to write science fiction, at least the good, old, hard science kind of science fiction. We are on such a fast development cycle of science and technology that predicting the future is almost impossible.

Do you remember the classic book, Flowers for Algernon? The book is about a young man who is mentally retarded and, as a result, has a limited life. Then, a scientist makes him the human trial for a drug that corrects his lack and even goes beyond that to make him a genius. Well, it’s quite possible that will be a reality soon, at least for certain kinds of mental retardation. An article over at Scientific American has the details.

So, the future is now and the next time you see a story about advances in medical science, think about this book, and this cure.  What will we cure next?  Honestly, I’m not sure if I hope more that it’s cancer or the common cold.


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