Tuesday, February 06, 2007

msb-0112 Its a Small World(wide-web) After All.

msb-0112 Its a Small World(wide-web) After All.

Feedback comes first, so...

No, I "won't" watch the "Grabby Music Awards" on Sunday.

I'm for the indie musician. I'm less interested in supporting the records of companies who are trying to choke us with DRM. (Not to mention that they are just sitting on their back catalogs and nobody can play the music.)

First is news that I'm over 6000 downloads. Hoo-frigin'-ray!

Not bad for a show with no real promotion. Though that may be coming soon. It depends on how my finances look at the end of the month. I might be able to take out an ad in "InsideMS."

Next... Either this is a spurious data error, or its real and I am agog at the very thought, but, who is coming to my sites from "Churchill Falls" or maybe from "Moose Factory"?

Anyway somebody is coming my sites from way the heck out in northern "Manitoba, Canada", on the border with "Nunavut, Canada"? (Then again, it may be a spurious collection since there seem to be a few cities on the list of recent visitors that aren't showing up on the map and may instead be lumped into a nonexistent country location.)

Drop me an line at charles (at) MSBPodcast.com.

And who lives near "Yarker"? (Its near "Kingston, Ontario, Canada".)

Drop me an email at charles (at) MSBPodcast.com.

And I seem so have a visitor or listener from "Tallinn in Estonia", just south of "Helsinki, Finland" and west of "Leningrad, Russia".

Drop me an email at charles (at) MSBPodcast.com.

And who is listening to or reading my stuff in "Santiago, Chile"?

Drop me an email at charles (at) MSBPodcast.com.

And who is listening to or reading my stuff in "Kalaheo, Hawaii"?

Drop me an email at charles (at) MSBPodcast.com.

(I seem to have listeners/readers all around the globe, so far. Its depressing to see how unlocalized MS really is.)

Either this map is total "bull-shit", or it really "is" a small world(-wide-web.)

My visitors come from 25 countries. The number of countries just keeps growing...

I'm trying to find some people in South Africa who have MS so I can have truly global reach, including Africa. :-)


Next topic:

MDMHvonPA's latest Roundup, as I write this, has been downloaded almost entirely through iTunes. That's weird. All of the other shows usually have more downloads through a browser than through iTunes or through iPodder. (Who'd using iPodder? Drop me an email charles (at) MSBPodcast.com)

That flies in the face of what usually happens.

I've seen a whole bunch of you struggling to do more than read my words and actually listen to the music that I pick.

Not to mention that, when I finally get some MS specific advertisers with my "no play, no pay" risk-less ad model, they won't be able to get to know what the rest of us will know, and that would be a tragedy, for you, like it was to me.

I went for years, years without hearing about MS, because there was nowhere to get that information, apart from medical journals (Like I neither need to, nor want to, nor am I really qualified to read those. And journals are "really" depressing.)

Anyway... You don't need an iPod, or another MP3 player, to catch a podcast, but it is handy when you want to listen to or watch your show "on the go."

If you have some objection to iTunes, or are not running on a Mac and not using some form of Windows, you can skip ahead to section 2.

Section 1a. Downloading iTunes

If you're using a Mac: you should already have iTunes installed and Software Update should have kept you current. (If not, you need to do click on this [ http://www.apple.com/itunes/ ] and follow the download instructions and let it install.)

Otherwise you can just skip ahead to the paragraph: section 1. downloading the show.

If you're using Windows: if you don't already have it, or you have an old version, like over a year old, you need to download iTunes (click on this link [ http://www.apple.com/itunes/ ] select "Download iTunes" follow the download instructions and let it install.

section 1b. downloading the show.

Just click on this link (
http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=120932170 )

If it isn't already running,
wait until iTunes loads, wait for the iTunes Music Store to load, wait for MSBPodscast's page to load, and then subscribe by just clicking on, you guessed it, subscribe.

That it! I never claimed it was rocket science. :-)

You can now skip ahead to the tune or to Feed Forward.

Section 2.

If you don't trust iTunes, don't like Steve Jobs, or are running Linux or some other form of Unix, you need to have FireFox installed and set file .m4a to play through your audio player.

Then you just go to http://www.MSBPodcast.com scroll down to the episode you want and click on the little "Pod" tag to the left of the episode title.

Its not hard, just complicated because you Unix/Linux users have so many options.

---- "You Don't Need An iPod " by: "Uncle Seth" http://musicface.com/uncleseth/

Feed Forward comes next, so...

I think I'm going to start a contest with those cute, extremely wearable "iPod Shuffles". (Maybe I can work something out with Apple. If not, I'll just have to pay the full retail price.)

You'd just have to send me an email at charles (at) MSBPodcast.com with a subject line "Win an iPod Shuffle"

I'd pick at random from any new people who send me an email. (C'mon, you wouldn't want me to give two to the same person now, 'wood ja?')

Just not yet though, I gotta create a schedule, (I could conceivably do this every month or every couple of months,) and run it past "she who must be obeyed," specially on matters of finances. (The only thing I know about money is that there is never enough...[sigh])


I just came across (Wednesday, February 7, 2006 as I write this) across a fascinating little article in the New York Times concerning a structure deep in our brains called the "insula".

Given that this structure could conceivably be affected by MS, I want to read about it.

It turns out that it is important (to quote the article):

Of course, like every important brain structure, the insula — there are actually two, one on each side of the brain — does not act alone. It is part of multiple circuits.

The insula itself is a sort of receiving zone that reads the physiological state of the entire body and then generates subjective feelings that can bring about actions, like eating, that keep the body in a state of internal balance. Information from the insula is relayed to other brain structures that appear to be involved in decision making, especially the anterior cingulate and prefrontal cortices.

The insula was long ignored for two reasons, researchers said. First, because it is folded and tucked deep within the brain, scientists could not probe it with shallow electrodes. It took the invention of brain imaging techniques, such as functional magnetic resonance imaging, or fMRI, to watch it in action.

Second, the insula was “assigned to the brain’s netherworld,” said John Allman, a neuroscientist at the California Institute of Technology. It was mistakenly defined as a primitive part of the brain involved only in functions like eating and sex. Ambitious scientists studied higher, more rational parts of the brain, he said.

The insula emerged from darkness a decade ago when Antonio Damasio, a neuroscientist now at the University of Southern California, developed the so-called somatic marker hypothesis, the idea that rational thinking cannot be separated from feelings and emotions. The insula, he said, plays a starring role.

Another neuroscientist, Arthur D. Craig at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, went on to describe exactly the circuitry that connects the body to the insula.

According to Dr. Craig, the insula receives information from receptors in the skin and internal organs. Such receptors are nerve cells that specialize in different senses. Thus there are receptors that detect heat, cold, itch, pain, taste, hunger, thirst, muscle ache, visceral sensations and so-called air hunger, the need to breathe. The sense of touch and the sense of the body’s position in space are routed to different brain regions, he said.

[The insula] may also be involved in the human sense of the progress of time, since it can create an anticipatory signal of how people may feel as opposed to how they feel now. Intensely emotional moments can affect our sense of time. It may stand still, and that may be happening in the insula, a crossroads of time and desire.

Like wow!

Something to explain "deja-vu" and another source of worry for a whole host of symptoms that can afflict MSers.

This research definitely bears watching.

---- Peeping Tom Amy Abdou http://www.amyabdou.com/

Feed Me! comes third, so...

Do you have a therapy, product, good or service that is of interest to MSers?

Consider advertising on this podcast.

Reminders on this segment only cost $0.03 per reminder per download of an episode. (A $30CPM targeted at MSers.)

It can/should lead to a full ad, in text, audio or video, which costs $3.00 per download.

That sounds expensive until you do the math and realize that if nobody downloads it it costs you nothing, unlike print, where you often can't even get an ad in to the specialized journals, or radio or TV where you'd just be wasting your money with the 0.0833% MSers rate of return. (That's about six times "below" the level of "statistical noise".)

But MSBPodcast is 100% in your market, and you only pay per download of your material.

No play, no pay.

Reach the MSers who would buy your therapy, product, good or service, with-out having to waste your advertising money on anyone who is "not" interested...

Send me an email at: charles (at) MSBPodcast.com

---- Let Me In Anna Lee http://www.peopleinthemoon.com/

Main Topic: Its a Small World(wide-web) After All.

It is a small world.

Diseases know and respect no boundaries, no barriers, no limitations.

As we humans have shrunk distance to places we want to see and the goods we can acquire, we have also expanded the range that a disease can travel.

You can kiss goodbye to isolation keeping you safe from the plague raging in the next county, the next country or even the next continent. (Of course, there's all those birds that fly wherever they want.)

We're all just meat to a bacterium or a virus, a food source. That's all we are.

So why are we dividing our efforts to fight diseases amongst even smaller units like countries or nations.

If the twentieth-century taught us anything, it that nations are not good for much except keeping people apart, blowing each other up and killing their citizens, both their own and those of somewhere else.

Now as efficient as nations were, (two world wars and hundreds of regional conflicts, religious wars, Jihads, tribal conflicts and so on, must have put hundreds of millions of people into premature graves,) they weren't as good at it as the diseases that we were struggling with throughout the world at the same time.

The great flu pandemic actually killed more people in more places than the first world war which was raging on at the time.

AIDS has killed more people than the Jihadists ever could with I.E.D.s and other explosives.

We need to put nationalist, or even pan-nationalistic Jihads behind us.

Our diseases affect our entire species.

Like I said previously, you're just meat to a bacterium or a virus.

It couldn't care less about anything more advanced than that, like a tribe, or a region, or a nation, or a religion.

We must respond with the same symmetry.

---- Evansessence Anne Farnsworth http://www.jazzmediapress.com/

Main topic, part "deux"

"Okay, what do you propose?, I heard you cry!

Well, I still have to check out a lot of facts and figures but, there is nothing undoable here.

We need to internationalize the health care systems and take them global. (They already share a great deal of information across borders and across continents. This wouldn't require anything major. The WHO and the UN are already taking care of some of this.)

Bu what needs to happen is that we need to allocate our financial resource according to the international prevalence and scale of the diseases.

If 10% of the world is permanently disabled and 5% of the world is occasionally or partially disabled, we should be living in a world that recognizes that fact and allocates its health care and financial resources to deal with that fact.

That means that the poor third world don't have to try to operate in a world where they cant, uh, operate, because of a lack of hygenic facilities.

We need to create a standard series of M.A.S.H. style facilities, from surgeries to neurological clinics, which can be installed anywhere on the planet, that any physician anywhere in the world can go into and know what's what and what's where.

A surgery is a surgery and a neuro ward is a neuro ward. Whether you're sick in Nairobi or New Orleans, Golgotha or the Gobi, you're sick and should have access to the same level of care.

We should "all" be treated with the same drugs by doctors with the same qualifications and with access to the same equipment.

(It might sound like I'm doing this for the "foreign hell-holes" but, frankly, there are plenty of places in the 'States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, England and throughout Europe that can use this, or any other places place where either distance, sparsity, scarcity, rarity or plain ol' pig ignorance rear their ugly head. [I'm looking at some presidential "shrubbery" right now, but at least he's not an AIDS denier.])

I'm just whistling in the wind here...

---- Manic Mission BeebleBrox http://www.acmerecords.com/beeblebrox.php



mdmhvonpa said...

Your bit on the Insula is an interesting bit ... it has certainly whet my appetite for more data.

mouse said...

Yeah, it's interesting the way the myelin is often described as being like the insula-tion that covers wiring, only it coats the nerves. If myelin is the actual transmission corridor, I wonder what the nerve itself does. Transmits pain!?

Charles-A. Rovira said...

Myelin is indeed the insulator 'round the nerves.

The nerves transmit signals. That's all.

Pain or not depends on the situation.

(Ever heard of BD/SM? What's painful to one may be just titillation to somebody else. [Different strokes for different folks, I guess.])

MS causes no lasting damage (relapsing/remitting is one type,) if there is no actual damage to the nerve, despite the occasional stripping away of the myelin.

Problems happen when the nerves themselves are affected.

We may have design redundancy in that we can be trained to use different nerves to accomplish the same function. (After all, that's what rehab is for.)

We do not have any wiring redundancy.

Miss Chris said...

Very good description of myelin. It's always a challenge to describe MS to someone who doesn't know what it does. I like to educate my friends about it without going into too much detail.

Charles-A. Rovira said...

I usually compare the effects of MS with, or is that to, the effects of taking a pair of wire strippers to the cables on a stereo system.

You get cross-talk distortion where two wires touch, modulation distortion where a sngle wire has been affected.

There are sensor wires (where our sensations are affected) and effector wires (where our motor controls are affected) and this causes most of our troubles.

Now, though with the insula, playing a part with our sense of planning and therefore with our sense of time, this adds the missing complexity:
Some of the wired are perhaps involved with our sense of volition.

(Not just how we perceive the world and how we move to affect it but with how we coordinate our even wanting to do, uh, stuff.)