4/23/2005:

Intermediate Word:  Ragnarok (a) dragon that guards the garden where the golden apples grow  (b) Fafnir's sire  (c) one of Genghis Khan's generals  (d) Norse doomsday
Difficult Word:
  donjon  (a) dungeon  (b) entry with outer and inner door  (c) massive, deep-toned bell   (d) fortified main tower of a castle

Robotic footballers have a ball  - BBC  The machine shoot-out was held over two days at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in London. The box-like robots are modelled around the same body but can be adapted by a team, to make it smaller or lower. The wheeled machines have scoops to push an orange golf ball, used as the football, around the pitch. They also have vision systems to spot their team-mates, opponents and ball.  Once in the stadium, the miniature Maradonas show off the work put in by the teams over the last year. "They are completely autonomous," said Aris Karcanias, one of the Warwick team members. "Once they are on the pitch, they are thinking using the computer."     
M-way jam (BBC) Stark warning over climate change  - BBC  The Earth is likely to experience a temperature rise of at least 3C, the UK government's chief scientist says. Professor Sir David King warned this would happen because world governments were failing to agree on cutting emissions of greenhouse gases. He told the BBC that nations had to act now to tackle the warming expected to happen over the next 100 years. The UK government and the EU want to try to stabilise the climate at an increase of no more than 2C, but the US refuses to cut emissions and those of India and China are rising quickly. The situation could wreck half the world's wildlife reserves, destroy major forest systems, and put 400 million more people at risk of hunger.

Heart model

Fat cells link to heart disease  - BBC  Fat cells around coronary arteries may play a key role in heart disease, research suggests. University of Iowa researchers found the cells release chemicals which can trigger inflammation.  Under certain circumstances, they might also stimulate potentially damaging growth of new blood vessels. The findings, presented to the Experimental Biology 2006 conference in San Francisco, may help explain why obesity increases heart disease risk.Fat cells - adipocytes - were once thought to do nothing other than simply store excess fat tissue. However, they are now known to be highly active, releasing many chemicals that influence biological processes within the body.However, they are now known to be highly active, releasing many chemicals that influence biological processes within the body. The Iowa team suspected that the chemicals pumped out by the fat cells surrounding the coronary arteries might play a role in triggering heart disease.  



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