Adonis Diaries

Archive for March 21st, 2015

 

How Robots change lives of handicapped?

Patsy Z shared  link on FB
Paralyzed by a stroke, Henry Evans uses a telepresence robot to take the stage
ted.com|By Henry Evans and Chad Jenkins
  • “I never thought I would be able to casually move around a campus on my own.” – Henry Evans
    And no, he’s not talking about the “handicap” chair (that used to be the BIG invention for the disabled back then), he’s talking about flying an aerial drone combined with an Oculus Rift.
    Amazing, no?

Henry Evans: Hello. My name is Henry Evans, and until August 29, 2002, I was living my version of the American dream.

I grew up in a typical American town near St. Louis. My dad was a lawyer. My mom was a homemaker.

My six siblings and I were good kids, but caused our fair share of trouble. After high school, I left home to study and learn more about the world.

I went to Notre Dame University and graduated with degrees in accounting and German, including spending a year of study in Austria.

Later on, I earned an MBA at Stanford. I married my high school sweetheart, Jane. I am lucky to have her. Together, we raised four wonderful children. I worked and studied hard to move up the career ladder, eventually becoming a chief financial officer in Silicon Valley, a job I really enjoyed.

My family and I bought our first and only home on December 13, 2001, a fixer-upper in a beautiful spot of Los Altos Hills, California, from where I am speaking to you now.

1:53 We were looking forward to rebuilding it, but eight months after we moved in, I suffered a stroke-like attack caused by a birth defect.

Overnight, I became a mute quadriplegic at the ripe old age of 40.

It took me several years, but with the help of an incredibly supportive family, I finally decided life was still worth living. I became fascinated with using technology to help the severely disabled.

Head tracking devices sold commercially by the company Madentec convert my tiny head movements into cursor movements, and enable my use of a regular computer. I can surf the web, exchange email with people, and routinely destroy my friend Steve Cousins in online word games. This technology allows me to remain engaged, mentally active, and feel like I am a part of the world.

2:58 One day, I was lying in bed watching CNN, when I was amazed by Professor Charlie Kemp of the Healthcare Robotics Lab at Georgia Tech demonstrating a PR2 robot.

I emailed Charlie and Steve Cousins of Willow Garage, and we formed the Robots for Humanity project.

For about two years, Robots for Humanity developed ways for me to use the PR2 as my body surrogate.

I shaved myself for the first time in 10 years. From my home in California, I shaved Charlie in Atlanta. I handed out Halloween candy. I opened my refrigerator on my own. I began doing tasks around the house. I saw new and previously unthinkable possibilities to live and contribute, both for myself and others in my circumstance.

4:04 All of us have disabilities in one form or another.

For example, if either of us wants to go 60 miles an hour, both of us will need an assistive device called a car. Your disability doesn’t make you any less of a person, and neither does mine. By the way, check out my sweet ride.  Since birth, we have both suffered from the inability to fly on our own.

4:35 Last year, Kaijen Hsiao of Willow Garage connected with me Chad Jenkins.

Chad showed me how easy it is to purchase and fly aerial drones. It was then I realized that I could also use an aerial drone to expand the worlds of bedridden people through flight, giving a sense of movement and control that is incredible.

Using a mouse cursor I control with my head, these web interfaces allow me to see video from the robot and send control commands by pressing buttons in a web browser.

With a little practice, I became good enough with this interface to drive around my home on my own. I could look around our garden and see the grapes we are growing. I inspected the solar panels on our roof. 

One of my challenges as a pilot is to land the drone on our basketball hoop. I went even further by seeing if I could use a head-mounted display, the Oculus Rift, as modified by Fighting Walrus, to have an immersive experience controlling the drone.

With Chad’s group at Brown, I regularly fly drones around his lab several times a week, from my home 3,000 miles away. All work and no fun makes for a dull quadriplegic, so we also find time to play friendly games of robot soccer.

I never thought I would be able to casually move around a campus like Brown on my own. I just wish I could afford the tuition.

Chad said:

7:38 What makes Henry’s story amazing is it’s about understanding Henry’s needs, understanding what people in Henry’s situation need from technology, and then also understanding what advanced technology can provide, and then bringing those two things together for use in a wise and responsible way.

What we’re trying to do is democratize robotics, so that anybody can be a part of this. (Anyone who can afford it).

We’re providing affordable, off-the-shelf robot platforms such as the A.R. drone, 300 dollars, the Suitable Technologies beam, only 17,000 dollars, along with open-source robotics software so that you can be a part of what we’re trying to do.

And our hope is that, by providing these tools, that you’ll be able to think of better ways to provide movement for the disabled, to provide care for our aging population, to help better educate our children, to think about what the new types of middle class jobs could be for the future, to both monitor and protect our environment, and to explore the universe.

Back to Henry:

8:44 With this drone setup, we show the potential for bedridden people to once again be able to explore the outside world, and robotics will eventually provide a level playing field where one is only limited by their mental acuity and imagination, where the disabled are able to perform the same activities as everyone else, and perhaps better, and technology will even allow us to provide an outlet for many people who are presently considered vegetables.

One hundred years ago, I would have been treated like a vegetable. Actually, that’s not true. I would have died.

9:26 It is up to us, all of us, to decide how robotics will be used, for good or for evil, for simply replacing people or for making people better, for allowing us to do and enjoy more.

9:39 Our goal for robotics is to unlock everyone’s mental power by making the world more physically accessible to people such as myself and others like me around the globe. With the help of people like you, we can make this dream a reality.

 

He didn’t do much of anything this candidate to the Presidency

A short list of the assassinations committed by Samir Ja3ja3, the leader of the Lebanese Forces militia during Lebanon civil war.

-1-  He assassinated late Rasheed Karami, prime minister of Lebanon.

– 2- He killed Tony Franjieh , the son of late president of Lebanon  Suleiman Franjieh, along with his wife and daughter.

– 3- He  murdered Danny Cham3oun , the son of late president of Lebanon Camil Chamoun, along with his wife and 2 children.

– 4- He butchered Mgr Albert khrysh, secretary of  late Maronite  patriarchate, and his body was dumped in  a bucket in the woods of Ghazir.  The body  was supposed to be dropped  in Broumana to point fingers at Amine Gemmayel.

– 5- He massacred 23 civilians on the bridge of Nahr Mawt in the suburb of Beirut. This was a peaceful candle-light vigil procession

– 6- He ordered the assassination of the Gen. in the Lebanese army Khalil Canaan.  Alek Iliya was the assassin who was killed shortly after to hide the evidence.

– 7- He used axes to dismember the Captain in the Lebanese army Antoine Haddad in February 1990,

– 8- He killed Lieutenant in the Lebanese army Joseph Nehmet. Tony Rahmeh executed the assassination. (Most of the Rahmeh family members worshipped this Samir who was from their hometown Bsharre and they never denied it even today.

– 9- Butchered the commander of Ashrfieh garrison Moris Fakhoury: They cut his penis and introduced it in his mouth and left the body for days in the streets of this Christian quarter.

– 10- He killed Commander Emile Azar of the Berjawi garrison in beirut.

– 11- He killed the military Unit Commander Michel Israili and dumped the body in the sea.

– 12- Attempted assassination by deadly poisons of the three officers in the Lebanese army:  Shamel Roukoz, Fadi Dawoud, and dany Khawand.. They had to receive  treatment outside Lebanon in April 1990. (Sharon must have learned from Samir when he poisoned Arafat)

– 13- Assassination of the citizen Khalil Fares  in Ashrafiyeh

– 14- He killed Ghaith Khoury, Phalange chief of Kisrouwan, and achieved his wife Nora in the hospital after she escaped the attempted assassination.

– 15- He killed his own infantry Commander of the Lebanese Forces Dr. Elias Zayek

– 16- He killed Charles Korban, his own Lebanese Forces commander of the armoured division. Korban was snatched from Hotel Dieu Hospital and then shot and body dumped in the sea.

– 17- Court marshalled and shot his officer Samir Zeinoun for suspicion that he liked the Lebanese army.

– 18- Attempted to assassinate his leader of the Lebanese forces, Dr. Fouad Abu Nadr.

– 19- Failed in assassinating Naja7 Wakeem,  deputy in the parliament

– 20- Failed assassination attempt of Michel Murr, deputy in parliament .

– 21- Abducted and murdered four Iranian diplomats at the Barbara checkpoint. Abdo Raji, known as Captain, was manning this checkpoint.

In addition to the genocide perpetrated in the Palestinian refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila, Israel Mossad made good use of Samir’s criminal creativity .

We cannot forget the scandal of the Zeitouny quarter incident where he ordered 50 veiled women to get naked and march in the street and then his companions raped them .

And you have many blokes clamouring that Samir is the A’s among the candidates.

Actually, Samir is the worst military commander of all times: He never won a single battle, in the Chouf, East Saida, Metn…Everywhere he lead his troops the Christians were forced to vacate the region after the frequent massacres on the Druze or Muslims

Samir Asmar shared Firas Al Ashek‘s photo and link on FB.
'‎جعجع مش عمل شي- 1 – قتل رشيد كرامي رئيس وزراء لبنان السابق.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 2 – قتل ابن رئيس لبنان السابق سليمان فرنجية، طوني فرنجية مع زوجته وابنته.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 3 – قتل ابن رئيس لبنان السابق كميل شمعون، داني شمعون مع زوجته وأطفاله.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 4 – قتل أمين سر البطريركية المارونية المونسينيور البير خريش ورمي جثته في حرش غزير. وكان من المفترض أن ترمى الجثة في برمانا لكي يصار إلى لوم الرئيس أمين الجميل.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 5 – قتل 23 مدنياً على جسر نهر الموت في ضاحية بيروت وذلك لقيامهم بتظاهرة سلمية كانوا يحملون خلالها الشموع. أعطيت الأوامر لحميد كيروز لرشهم بالرصاص.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 6 – قتل العميد في الجيش اللبناني خليل كنعان. أليك إيليا كان المسؤول عن تنفيذ المهمة و قُتِل لاحقاً لإخفاء الدليل.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 7 – قتل النقيب في الجيش اللبناني أنطوان حداد في شباط 1990، حداد قُتل بالفؤوس.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 8 – قتل الملازم أول في الجيش اللبناني جوزف نعمة. نَفَذَ العملية طوني رحمة.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 9 – قتل قائد ثكنة الأشرفية العسكرية موريس فاخوري بالفؤوس. في وحشية لم يسبق لها مثيل في حيّ مسيحي في بيروت. قُطِع قضيبه ووضع في فمه ورميت جثته في الشارع لأيام.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 10 – قتل إميل عازار قائد ثكنة البرجاوي العسكرية في بيروت.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 11 – قتل قائد الوحدة العسكرية ميشال إسرائيلي الذي رمي في البحر لتغطية الدليل.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 12 – محاولة قتل ثلاثة ضباط في الجيش اللبناني هم : شامل روكز وفادي داوود وداني خوند الذين سمموا بشكل مميت. كان عليهم السفر إلى خارج لبنان للمعالجة في نيسان 1990.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 13 – اغتيال المواطن خليل فارس في شوارع الاشرفية.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 14 – قتل رئيس إقليم جبيل الكتائبي غيث خوري بعد إرسال فوزي الراسي في أثره خلال الليل. زوجته نورا قُتلت في المستشفى، بعد أن نجت من محاولة الاغتيال.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 15 – قتل قائد المشاة في القوات اللبنانية الدكتور الياس الزايك.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 16 – قتل شارل قربان قائد الفرقة المدرعة السابق للقوات اللبنانية. قربان الذي كان يعالج في مستشفى أوتيل ديو اقتيد من هناك ثم أطلق النار عليه ورميت جثته في البحر.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 17 – إعدام الضابط في القوات اللبنانية سمير زينون ورفيقه.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 18 – محاولة اغتيال قائد القوات اللبنانية، الدكتور فؤاد أبو ناضر.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 19 – محاولة اغتيال النائب في البرلمان اللبناني نجاح واكيم.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 20 – محاولة اغتيال النائب في البرلمان اللبناني ميشال المر.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>- 21 – قتل الدبلوماسيين الإيرانيين الأربعة الذين اختطفوا في نقطة تفتيش حاجز البربارة العسكري التابع للقوات اللبنانية تحت إشراف عبدو راجي المعروف باسم “الكابتن”.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>بالإضافة إلى مجزرة صبرا وشاتيلا التي إختار الموساد الإسرائيلي سمير جعجع لتنفيذ تلك العملية نظراً لإبداعه في المجال الإجرامي.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>أيضاً لا نستطيع أن ننسى فضيحة الزيتونة أو وسفالة الزيتونة حيث جمّع جعجع ما يزيد عن 50 محجبة وجعلهم يمشون في الشارع عاريات من دون أي لباس ثم من معه قام بالإغتصاب‎'

جعجع مش عمل شي- 1 – قتل رشيد كرامي رئيس وزراء لبنان السابق.

– 2 – قتل ابن رئيس لبنان السابق سليمان فرنجية، طوني فرنجية مع زوجته وابنته.

– 3 – قتل ابن رئيس لبنان السابق كميل شمعون، داني شمعون مع زوجته وأطفاله.

– 4 – قتل أمين سر البطريركية المارونية المونسينيور البير خريش ورمي جثته في حرش غزير. وكان من المفترض أن ترمى الجثة في برمانا لكي يصار إلى لوم الرئيس أمين الجميل.

– 5 – قتل 23 مدنياً على جسر نهر الموت في ضاحية بيروت وذلك لقيامهم بتظاهرة سلمية كانوا يحملون خلالها الشموع. أعطيت الأوامر لحميد كيروز لرشهم بالرصاص.

– 6 – قتل العميد في الجيش اللبناني خليل كنعان. أليك إيليا كان المسؤول عن تنفيذ المهمة و قُتِل لاحقاً لإخفاء الدليل.

– 7 – قتل النقيب في الجيش اللبناني أنطوان حداد في شباط 1990، حداد قُتل بالفؤوس.

– 8 – قتل الملازم أول في الجيش اللبناني جوزف نعمة. نَفَذَ العملية طوني رحمة.

– 9 – قتل قائد ثكنة الأشرفية العسكرية موريس فاخوري بالفؤوس. في وحشية لم يسبق لها مثيل في حيّ مسيحي في بيروت. قُطِع قضيبه ووضع في فمه ورميت جثته في الشارع لأيام.

– 10 – قتل إميل عازار قائد ثكنة البرجاوي العسكرية في بيروت.

– 11 – قتل قائد الوحدة العسكرية ميشال إسرائيلي الذي رمي في البحر لتغطية الدليل.

– 12 – محاولة قتل ثلاثة ضباط في الجيش اللبناني هم : شامل روكز وفادي داوود وداني خوند الذين سمموا بشكل مميت. كان عليهم السفر إلى خارج لبنان للمعالجة في نيسان 1990.

– 13 – اغتيال المواطن خليل فارس في شوارع الاشرفية.

– 14 – قتل رئيس إقليم جبيل الكتائبي غيث خوري بعد إرسال فوزي الراسي في أثره خلال الليل. زوجته نورا قُتلت في المستشفى، بعد أن نجت من محاولة الاغتيال.

– 15 – قتل قائد المشاة في القوات اللبنانية الدكتور الياس الزايك.

– 16 – قتل شارل قربان قائد الفرقة المدرعة السابق للقوات اللبنانية. قربان الذي كان يعالج في مستشفى أوتيل ديو اقتيد من هناك ثم أطلق النار عليه ورميت جثته في البحر.

– 17 – إعدام الضابط في القوات اللبنانية سمير زينون ورفيقه.

– 18 – محاولة اغتيال قائد القوات اللبنانية، الدكتور فؤاد أبو ناضر.

– 19 – محاولة اغتيال النائب في البرلمان اللبناني نجاح واكيم.

– 20 – محاولة اغتيال النائب في البرلمان اللبناني ميشال المر.

– 21 – قتل الدبلوماسيين الإيرانيين الأربعة الذين اختطفوا في نقطة تفتيش حاجز البربارة العسكري التابع للقوات اللبنانية تحت إشراف عبدو راجي المعروف باسم “الكابتن”.

بالإضافة إلى مجزرة صبرا وشاتيلا التي إختار الموساد الإسرائيلي سمير جعجع لتنفيذ تلك العملية نظراً لإبداعه في المجال الإجرامي.

أيضاً لا نستطيع أن ننسى فضيحة الزيتونة أو وسفالة الزيتونة حيث جمّع جعجع ما يزيد عن 50 محجبة وجعلهم يمشون في الشارع عاريات من دون أي لباس ثم من معه قام بالإغتصاب

 

The real Story Not Taught in Schools: Irish-American and St. Patrick’s day

“Wear green on St. Patrick’s Day or get pinched.”

That pretty much sums up the Irish-American “curriculum” that I learned when I was in school.

Yes, I recall a nod to the so-called Potato Famine, but it was mentioned only in passing.

Today’s high school textbooks continue to largely ignore the famine, despite the fact that it was responsible for unimaginable suffering and the deaths of more than a million Irish peasants, and that it triggered the greatest wave of Irish immigration in U.S. history.

Nor do textbooks make any attempt to help students link famines past and present.

Yet there is no shortage of material that can bring these dramatic events to life in the classroom. In my own high school social studies classes, I begin with Sinead O’Connor’s haunting rendition of “Skibbereen,” which includes the verse:

… Oh it’s well I do remember, that bleak
December day,
The landlord and the sheriff came, to drive
Us all away
They set my roof on fire, with their cursed
English spleen
And that’s another reason why I left old
Skibbereen.

By contrast, Holt McDougal’s U.S. history textbook The Americans, devotes a flat two sentences to “The Great Potato Famine.”

Prentice Hall’s America: Pathways to the Present fails to offer a single quote from the time. The text calls the famine a “horrible disaster,” as if it were a natural calamity like an earthquake.

And in an awful single paragraph, Houghton Mifflin’s The Enduring Vision: A History of the American People blames the “ravages of famine” simply on “a blight,” and the only contemporaneous quote comes, inappropriately, from a landlord, who describes the surviving tenants as “famished and ghastly skeletons.”

Uniformly, social studies textbooks fail to allow the Irish to speak for themselves, to narrate their own horror.

These timid slivers of knowledge not only deprive students of rich lessons in Irish-American history, they exemplify much of what is wrong with today’s curricular reliance on corporate-produced textbooks.

First, does anyone really think that students will remember anything from the books’ dull and lifeless paragraphs? Today’s textbooks contain no stories of actual people. We meet no one, learn nothing of anyone’s life, encounter no injustice, no resistance.

This is a curriculum bound for boredom. As someone who spent almost 30 years teaching high school social studies, I can testify that students will be unlikely to seek to learn more about events so emptied of drama, emotion, and humanity.

Nor do these texts raise any critical questions for students to consider.

For example, it’s important for students to learn that the crop failure in Ireland affected only the potato—during the worst famine years, other food production was robust.

Michael Pollan notes in The Botany of Desire, “Ireland’s was surely the biggest experiment in monoculture ever attempted and surely the most convincing proof of its folly.”

But if only this one variety of potato, the Lumper, failed, and other crops thrived, why did people starve?

Thomas Gallagher points out in Paddy’s Lament, that during the first winter of famine, 1846-47, as perhaps 400,000 Irish peasants starved, the British landlords exported 17 million pounds sterling worth of grain, cattle, pigs, flour, eggs, and poultry—food that could have prevented those deaths.

Throughout the famine, as Gallagher notes, there was an abundance of food produced in Ireland, yet the landlords exported it to markets abroad.

The school curriculum could and should ask students to reflect on the contradiction of starvation amidst plenty, on the ethics of food exports amidst famine. And it should ask why these patterns persist into our own time.

More than a century and a half after the “Great Famine,” we live with similar, perhaps even more glaring contradictions.

Raj Patel opens his book, Stuffed and Starved: Markets, Power and the Hidden Battle for the World’s Food System: “Today, when we produce more food than ever before, more than one in ten people on Earth are hungry. The hunger of 800 million happens at the same time as another historical first: that they are outnumbered by the one billion people on this planet who are overweight.”

Patel’s book sets out to account for “the rot at the core of the modern food system.”

This is a curricular journey that our students should also be on — reflecting on patterns of poverty, power, and inequality that stretch from 19th century Ireland to 21st century Africa, India, Appalachia, and Oakland.

Students ought to explore what happens when food and land are regarded purely as commodities in a global system of profit.

But today’s corporate textbook-producers are no more interested in feeding student curiosity about this inequality than were British landlords interested in feeding Irish peasants.

Take Pearson, the global publishing giant.

At its website, the corporation announces (redundantly) that “we measure our progress against three key measures: earnings, cash and return on invested capital.” The Pearson empire had 2011 worldwide sales of more than $9 billion—that’s nine thousand million dollars, as I might tell my students.

Multinationals like Pearson have no interest in promoting critical thinking about an economic system whose profit-first premises they embrace with gusto.

As mentioned, there is no absence of teaching materials on the Irish famine that can touch head and heart. In a role play, “Hunger on Trial,” that I wrote and taught to my own students in Portland, Oregon—included at the Zinn Education Project website— students investigate who or what was responsible for the famine.

The British landlords, who demanded rent from the starving poor and exported other food crops?

The British government, which allowed these food exports and offered scant aid to Irish peasants?

The Anglican Church, which failed to denounce selfish landlords or to act on behalf of the poor?

A system of distribution, which sacrificed Irish peasants to the logic of colonialism and the capitalist market?

These are rich and troubling ethical questions. They are exactly the kind of issues that fire students to life and allow them to see that history is not simply a chronology of dead facts stretching through time.

So go ahead: Have a Guinness, wear a bit of green, and put on the Chieftains.

But let’s honor the Irish with our curiosity. Let’s make sure that our schools show some respect, by studying the social forces that starved and uprooted over a million Irish—and that are starving and uprooting people today.

Bill Bigelow taught high school social studies in Portland, Ore. for almost 30 years. He is the curriculum editor of Rethinking Schools and the co-director of the Zinn Education Project.

This project offers free materials to teach people’s history and an “If We Knew Our History” article series.

Bigelow is author or co-editor of numerous books, including A People’s History for the Classroom and The Line Between Us: Teaching About the Border and Mexican Immigration, and most recently, A People’s Curriculum for the Earth: Teaching Climate Change and the Environmental Crisis.

Note 1: https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2014/04/04/st-patricks-day-what-is-wrong-a-lie-a-misrepresentation-misconception/

Note 2:

Andrew Bossone shared this link on FB

Certainly some lessons to learn: “The school curriculum could and should ask students to reflect on the contradiction of starvation amidst plenty, on the ethics of food exports amidst famine. And it should ask why these patterns persist into our own time.”

“Wear green on St. Patrick’s Day or get pinched.”
commondreams.org

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