The US Stays Open For Now
The US Government did not shut down after all, despite things looking pretty dang likely for a bit there.
At the 11th hour, house Republican leader Kevin McCarthy struck a deal with house Democrats to pass a temporary spending bill which the Senate then passed fairly quickly, despite some drama. The bill includes no money for Ukraine, but a good bit of money for disaster relief, which was against the wishes of the far right flank in the House, who wanted to gut spending for disaster relief, veteran aid, social security and pretty much everything in the budget that actually goes towards helping citizens.
The right flank is now threatening to unseat Kevin McCarthy as speaker, since he worked with the other political party to pass the spending bill. While I am no fan of the Democrats, it is worth noting that the far right is basically saying "if we don't get explicitly our way, which includes not even hearing the desires of the other party, then we will attack our own leadership." Weird, almost like they're fascists or something. I wonder if anyone has noted that before.
Anyway, the budget that was passed is temporary and only lasts 45 days. After that, we'll be right back where we were. So, expect a possible "Part 2" to this saga around the holidays. Thanksgiving is gonna be a BLAAAAST.
Nobel Prize for mRNA Researchers
Science People Katalin Karikó and Drew Weissman have been awarded this year's Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine due to their world-changing research into mRNA vaccines which lead to the fast production of the COVID vaccinations.
While their research on the subject matter began long before the COVID outbreak, it is ultimately what lead to record speed production of vaccinations which have been administered more than 13 billion times and saved countless lives.
The future of this type of vaccine is pretty bright and may lead to many more major advances in the medical science world. So, thank you, Science People.
One Wheel, Several Deaths
Have you seen people riding those Onewheel skateboard things? It's like a skateboard but with one big wheel in the middle and its like a small Segway kind of thing. It looks like an exceedingly dangerous design, and wouldn't ya know it, they just recalled hundreds of thousands of them because people keep crashing and dying from head injuries.
Granted, most of the deaths have occurred from people not wearing helmets. So protect your dang melon, but also, this device has a literal single wheel. You hit a bump and you're done for.
The company who produces the skateboards has recalled their original models and have pushed an update for newer models to alert the rider when they're at risk of injury. But hey: maybe ride something with like, at least one more wheel???
The company also advises that owners of the original models cease using it immediately and instead buy a newer one. I instead advise that you just get like, a scooter. Or a bike. Or literally anything else. But if you use a OneWheel and you super love it, then have at it.
Robot Wolves in Japan
Japan is using horrifying robotic wolves designed to be as hellish and spooky as possible to scare off bears in some rural areas as bears begin to get a bit too curious in the countryside.
Several factors, not the least of which is climate change, are causing bears to get closer to human population centers in search of food. Combine that with Japan's generally ageing population, and bear attacks begin to spike.
In 2020, they began trying out use of robot hellhounds, basically a stuffed wolf with glowing red eyes and a speaker that plays wolf howls constantly on loop, then slapped on top of a small roving craft to make it mobile.
It is legitimately a thing of nightmares, but hey, if it works it works.
I can say for certain that if I were roaming the Japanese countryside in search of food, I would likely be scared off by the large robotic helldog.
On This day…
Instead of a history factoid, I want to note that as of today (October 2nd), there are 90 days left in the year.
How's it been? Things have been good and bad for folks this year, but take a sec to look at the past year and the road ahead to 2024. Anything you want to follow up on? Anything you'd like to check in on? Anything you've been putting off that might be worth getting to?
90 days is still quite some time. It's not too late to start something new.
Here's the Weather
- 3 cops from the Baton Rouge police department have been charged so far over their torture warehouse
- Las Vegas cops have arrested who they believe to be the murderer of Tupac
- Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI (ChatGPT) talks about replacing "median humans" with AI (just let that steep for a sec: tech bro lord refers to normal people as "median humans." These people should not be holding the levers of our future)
- A 16 year old boy in England has been arrested for felling a historic tree which appeared in Robin Hood: Prince of Theives
- After beginning to push ads in its responses, Bing's AI is now promoting malware to users
- The new iPhone 15 and 15 pro models are overheating, Apple has stated it is a software issue
- Stardew Valley will be getting official 8-player co-op support in its next update, among a bunch of other new stuff