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    Ukraine hit by influenza A/H1N1 (swine flu)

    31st October 2009

    virusStarting October, 30, there is a 3-week quarantine in all primary and higher bodies of education in Ukraine – to limit the spread of the infection.

    A total of 80k people were registered with respiratory infections (not classified by flu type). Several small samples tested for A/H1N1 (which is the cause of swine flu pandemic) indicate that 30-50% of all cases could be swine flu (with other cases being “seasonal flu” – that is, previously known influenza types and subtypes). It is reported that ~37 died since Monday, with symptoms matching those of swine flu. Most of the statistics come from the Western regions of Ukraine, which were the first to face rapid daily temperatures decrease – which could have been the trigger of massive infections.

    Today I’ve seen a number of people in Kyiv’s underground railway wearing medical face masks (or just pulling their scarfs up to cover noses). Drug stores were literally stormed for anti-virus medications, immune system stimulators, medical face masks, vitamins, etc.

    If not the virus, then panic is definitely in the air. I do not recollect seeing something like that before.


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    Death on the roads of Ukraine

    19th March 2008

    Ukraine is the most dangerous country in Europe. That is, in terms of road safety and driving culture (or, to be more precise, the lack of both).

    In 2007 in Ukraine, there were over 62 000 road accidents with over 9 000 killed and 77 000 injured.
    This is 20% increase comparing to 2006.
    And this is also almost two people dead from road accidents per 10000 of population, and 16(!) people injured per 10000 of population.
    Based on these numbers, every Ukrainian is (on average) at 0.16% risk of being injured and at 0.02% risk of being killed in a road accident.

    (An increase in the number of new cars sold in 2007 relative to 2006 was 46.1%: from 371000 sold in 2006, up by 171000 to 542000 new cars sold in 2007.)

    On average, road kill accidents take 3-8 times more lives in Ukraine, then in other European countries.

    If you visit Ukraine – watch out for reckless, drunken, stupid, blind, ignorant drivers and violating, unpredictable, dummy pedestrians.

    The further from the Kyiv’s downtown you are – the more watchful you should be.

    This post used the numbers from this press-release (in Ukrainian).


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    International Women’s Day

    8th March 2008

    Warmest greetings to ladies!

    March, 8th

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    Singularity prophecy

    29th August 2007

    Found this video via BlindSpot:

    At the end of the video, when future supercomputers are described, it hinted me at two distinct long-living ideas: that of singularity (in the sense of a breakthrough leading to the immediate exponential growth and even probable abrupt mankind transformation), and that of Artificial Intelligence. The video suggests that this will happen somewhere between 2013 and 2049, which is hard to believe.

    Information overload is definitely a feature of the modern world. There’s still space for further overload, but what will be the result? Psychotic workers, or super-intelligent and hyper-efficient “infohumans”?

    China, India and their bordering states (sorry, no offence here – just to shorten the list) were long known to constitute the largest mono-national parts of world population. It’s clear that after fairly recent joining of the Asian states into a superstate cooperation commonwealth, half of the world’s population already resides in that commonwealth. This projection for the future seems the strongest of all shown in the movie.

    I would strongly doubt the “largest English-speaking country in 10 years” to be China. Imagine: you live in a 1+ billion people country, and you are financially stable (we all know that China is the fastest growing world’s economy); why would you need to learn English, which is so different from your native language? Chinese language is the way – so start learning it as soon as you can :) (BTW, seen somewhere that the number of Japanese blogs, as expected, became larger than the number of English blogs. Now waiting for Chinese blogs? )


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    Fast food of the future?

    28th August 2007

    Watch this:

    If it’s convenient and well-designed, I wouldn’t mind visiting such a fast food once in a while. Though it’s hard to imagine having breakfast there every day: too dull, I suspect. But have to try first to be sure.

    Some more videos of delivery and disposal:
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    Parkour videos collection

    11th March 2007

    Do you know what is parkour? If not – this videos collection will tell you :)

    (But, in short, the philosophy is: “100% efficiency in urban movement”.)

    All the videos (except for two) are embedded from the Parkour series at ExpertVillage. As a side note: ExpertVillage shows ads before the video from time to time.

    To start with, you may want to know the short history of parkour. Here is a movie from one of the parkour-evangelists:

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    Heed the warning: Game Over

    30th January 2007

    Avoid playing computer games.
    Read the rest of this entry »


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