web analytics
August 27, 2016 / 23 Av, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘making’

Are You Guilty of Making These Common Investment Mistakes?

Monday, July 25th, 2016

Larry Swedroe, director of research at Buckingham Asset Management, gives tips on avoiding investment mistakes and reviews important financial concepts investors frequently forget.

One common financial mistake people make is giving their adult children too much financial assistance. Doug Goldstein, CFP® asks how much money you give your children, and should this be at the expense of your future retirement? Get tips on what to do if you think you are falling behind with saving for retirement.

The Goldstein On Gelt Show is a financial podcast. Click on the player below to listen. For show notes and contact details of the guest, go to www.GoldsteinOnGelt.com

Doug Goldstein, CFP®

Weizmann Scientists Engineer Bacteria Making Sugar from Greenhouse Gas

Tuesday, June 28th, 2016

All life on the planet relies, in one way or another, on a process called carbon fixation: the ability of plants, algae and certain bacteria to “pump” carbon dioxide (CO2) from the environment, add solar or other energy and turn it into the sugars that are the required starting point needed for life processes, reads a press release of the Weizman Institute headlined, “Eating Air, Making Fuel — Weizmann Institute scientists engineer bacteria to create sugar from the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide.”

At the top of the food chain are different organisms, such as humans, that use the opposite means of survival: they eat sugars (made by photosynthetic plants and microorganisms) and then release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. This means of growth is called “heterotrophism.”

Is it possible to “reprogram” an organism that is found higher in the food chain, which consumes sugar and releases carbon dioxide, so that it will consume carbon dioxide from the environment and produce the sugars it needs to build its body mass? That is just what a group of Weizmann Institute of Science researchers recently did.

Dr. Niv Antonovsky, who led this research in Prof. Ron Milo’s lab at the Institute’s Plant and Environmental Sciences Department, says that the ability to improve carbon fixation is crucial for our ability to cope with future challenges, such as the need to supply food to a growing population on shrinking land resources while using less fossil fuel.

The Institute scientists rose to this challenge by inserting the metabolic pathway for carbon fixation and sugar production (the so called Calvin cycle) into the bacterium E. coli, a known “consumer” organism that eats sugar and releases carbon dioxide.

The metabolic pathway for carbon fixation is well known, and Milo and his group expected that, with proper planning, they would be able to attach the genes containing the information for building it into the bacterium’s genome. Yet the main enzyme used in plants to fix carbon, RuBisCO, utilizes as a substrate for the CO2 fixation reaction a metabolite which is toxic for the bacterial cells. Thus the design had to include precisely regulating the expression levels of the various genes across this multistep pathway.

In one way the team’s well-thought-out plan was a resounding success: The bacteria did indeed produce the carbon fixation enzymes, and these were functional. But the machinery, as a whole, did not “deliver the goods.” Even though the carbon fixation machinery was expressed, the bacteria failed to use CO2 for sugar synthesis, relying instead on an external supply of sugar. “Of course, we were dealing with an organism that has evolved over millions of years to eat sugar, not CO2,” says Antonovsky. “So we turned to evolution to help us create the system we intended.”

Antonovsky, Milo and the team, including Shmuel Gleizer, Arren Bar-Even, Yehudit Zohar, Elad Herz and others, next designed tanks called “chemostats,” in which they grew the bacteria, gradually nudging them into developing an appetite for CO2. Initially, along with ample bubbles of CO2, the bacteria in the tanks were offered a large amount of pyruvate, which is an energy source, as well as barely enough sugar to survive. Thus, by changing the conditions of their environment and stressing them, the scientists forced the bacteria to learn, by adaptation and development, to use the more abundant material in their environment. A month went by, and things remained fairly static. The bacteria seemed to not “get the hint.” But in a month and a half or so, some bacteria showed signs of doing more than “just surviving.” By the third month the scientists were able to wean the evolved bacteria from the sugar and raise them on CO2 and pyruvate alone. Isotope labeling of the carbon dioxide molecules revealed that the bacteria were indeed using CO2 to create a significant portion of their body mass, including all the sugars needed to make the cell.

When the scientists sequenced the genomes of the evolved bacteria, they found many changes scattered throughout the bacterial chromosomes. “They were completely different from what we had predicted,” says Milo. “It took us two years of hard work to understand which of these are essential and to unravel the ‘logic’ involved in their evolution.” Repeating the experiment (and again waiting months) gave the scientists essential clues for identifying the mutations necessary for changing the E. coli diet from one based on sugar to one using carbon dioxide.

Prof. Milo noted that “the ability to program or reengineer E. coli to fix carbon could give researchers a new toolbox for studying and improving this basic process.”

Although currently the bacteria release CO2 back into the atmosphere, the team envisions that in the future their insights might be applied to creating microorganisms that soak up atmospheric CO2 and convert it into stored energy or to achieving crops with carbon fixing pathways, resulting in higher yields and better adaption to feeding humanity.

JNi.Media

Beyond The Matrix – Making It Through Tough Times Through Torah [audio]

Sunday, May 22nd, 2016

Rod and Ira examine how to deal with the obstacles and difficulties in your life according to the principles of Torah.

Beyond The Matrix 17May2016 – PODCAST

Israel News Talk Radio

Making Big Magic: Abandoning Fear And Embracing Creativity

Monday, May 16th, 2016

Let me list for you some of the many ways in which you might be afraid to live a more creative life:
You’re afraid you have no talent.
You’re afraid you’ll be rejected or criticized or ridiculed or misunderstood or – worst of all – ignored.
You’re afraid there’s no market for your creativity and therefore no point in pursuing it.
You’re afraid somebody else already did it better.
You’re afraid everybody else already did it better.
You’re afraid somebody else will steal your ideas, so it’s safer to keep them hidden forever in the dark.
You’re afraid you won’t be taken seriously.
You’re afraid your work isn’t politically, emotionally, or artistically important enough to change anyone’s life.
You’re afraid your dreams are embarrassing.
You’re afraid you don’t have the right kind of work space, or financial freedom, or empty hours in which to focus on invention or exploration.
You’re afraid of what your peers and coworkers will say if you express your personal truth aloud
Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear

 

Many of us have a creative side that we fear exposing to the world, possibly because of one of the reasons Gilbert, the author of the bestseller Eat, Pray, Love, presents above. We fear failure and ridicule, and, therefore, decide that it’s not worth the risk. We choose to ignore our natural inclination to create in favor of our natural inclination to fear. This is perfectly normal and understandable; however, if we move past that fear, we might live happier and more creatively-fulfilled lives. Do you have the courage to incorporate creativity into your life?

Gilbert’s discussion of her fear is quite moving and relatable. It paralyzed her for many years, but when she realized that she could not get rid of it, especially when in regards to creative endeavors, she decided to not let fear control her. To that end, she wrote her fear the following letter:

“Dearest Fear: Creativity and I are about to go on a road trip together. I understand you’ll be joining us, because you always do. I acknowledge that you believe you have an important job to do in my life, and that you take your job seriously. Apparently your job is to induce complete panic whenever I’m about to do anything interesting – and may I say, you are superb at your job. So by all means, keep doing your job, if you feel you must. But I will also be doing my job on this road trip, which is to work hard and stay focused. And Creativity will be doing its job, which is to remain stimulating and inspiring. There’s plenty of room in this vehicle for all of us, so make yourself at home, but understand this: Creativity and I are the only ones who will be making any decisions along the way. I recognize and respect that you are part of this family, and so I will never exclude you from our activities, but still – your suggestions will never be followed. You’re allowed to have a seat, and you’re allowed to have a voice, but you are not allowed to have a vote. You’re not allowed to touch the road maps; you’re not allowed to suggest detours; you’re not allowed to fiddle with the temperature. Dude, you’re not even aloud to touch the radio. But above all else, my dear old familiar friend, you are absolutely forbidden to drive.”

 

Ok, so you must take fear along for the ride with creativity – and Gilbert writes in a way that is clear and convincing. In the later portion of her book, though, she doesn’t give concrete examples of how to cultivate creativity. For that, I turn to neuroscientists John Kounios and Mark Beeman and their book The Eureka Factor: Aha Moments, Creative Insight, and the Brain. They explain that there is a science behind creativity and thus a way to incorporate more of it into our lives:

Rifka Schonfeld

Israel Intercepts 4 Tons Ammonium Chloride Smuggled by Hamas to Make Rocket Fuel

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016

Israeli customs agents in collaboration with Shabak foiled a Hamas attempt to smuggle four tons of ammonium chloride hidden in a shipment of salt before the Passover holiday, Israel announced on Tuesday. Ammonium chloride is used in hair shampoo, in the glue that bonds plywood, and in cleaning products, but as ammonium perchlorate composite propellant (APCP) it is typically used in aerospace propulsion applications, including in building rockets in Gaza intended hit civilian populations inside Israel. According to the announcement, the amount seized could be used to manufacture hundreds of long-range rockets.

About a week before the holiday, a special shipment of 40 tons of salt arrived at the Nitzana crossing which is used for moving goods from Egypt to Israel, the PA and the Gaza Strip.

The unusually large amount of salt being transferred raised a red flag.

A thorough examination by the Nitzana customs agents revealed that some of the bags of salt were actually ammonium chloride weighing 4 tons altogether. Ammonium chloride is a dual-use substance requiring an import license, because of its potential use by Hamas and the Islamic Jihad in manufacturing long-range rockets.

Recently, the Shabak has noted a vast increase in salt shipments to Gaza, and soon figured out it was being used to conceal smuggled illegal chemicals. In the reported case, Shabak believes the importer, a Gaza resident, was indeed seeking to provide the chemical to the Hamas, under the guise of merchandise intended for the civilian population and rehabilitation projects.

To date, the collaboration between the customs service and Shabak has led to the thwarting of dozens of smuggling attempts that included shipments of sulfuric acid, diving Suits, polyurethane propellant for rockets, sulfur rods, fiberglass rolls, and a special coal used to fuel iron furnaces for processing metals.

David Israel

Meet a 19-Year-Old Explosives Expert

Thursday, August 8th, 2013

Growing up, it was uncommon for students from Corporal Dylan Ostrin’s International school to join the IDF, let alone stay in Israel. However, she had a specific vision for herself: she wanted to be in the Combat Engineering Corps.

Corporal Dylan Ostrin made aliyah (immigrated to Israel) from the US at the age of seven with her family. After moving from Texas and California, Cpl. Ostrin spent much of her school years at an international school where the students were children of foreign residents, such as diplomats, who did not have a connection to the land, history or culture and did not plan on making their lives in Israel. Tailoring to this crowd, her school provided an education devoid of Israeli identity, including the idea of joining the IDF. “My school’s point of view was to graduate and go as far away from Israel as possible for college,” said Cpl. Ostrin.

For her, joining the army was not the norm, unlike most people who grow up in Israel. “I see it as a privilege to be able to serve my country and I was not prepared to give that privilege up.”

Today, Cpl. Ostrin is an explosives instructor in the Combat Engineering Corps. She teaches all things explosive: from how to handle the explosives themselves to utilizing them in operations, such as gaining access to buildings. The soldiers she leads are mainly reservists who come back for their annual duty, ranging in age from 22 to 40 and sometimes more. Cpl. Ostrin loves working with reservists because it is satisfying to see reservists relearn things they might not have done in years.

“[Reservists] come out of their everyday life to do this, [leaving] their family, their work,” she explained. “They don’t have anyone to force them to listen. So I really have to show them how much I know in order to keep their attention.”

Though she loves her job, Cpl. Ostrin has dealt with hardships during her service. First, due to a filing error, she was placed in the wrong course for several months. She fought for what she wanted, including writing letters, making phone calls, begging her higher ups and even spending a whole day trying to convince different placement officers. They finally agreed to correct the situation.

After all the stress of trying to get into the right training track, Cpl. Ostrin received some hard news that would affect every aspect of her life. Due to a job promotion, her parents were leaving Israel and moving to the U.K. When her mother presented the situation to her and her brother, Cpl. Ostrin at first told them they should not leave. However, she later realized she is independent enough to thrive on her own, thanks to the new sense of independence she learned from serving in the IDF.

“If my parents would have told me they were leaving before I entered the army, I don’t know how I would have dealt with it. But the army teaches you certain skills that force you to become your own person and be independent,” she said.

Since her parents moved, Cpl. Ostrin has been getting by as a lone soldier, especially thanks to her fellow soldiers. She said have become more like family than just friends. They have invited Cpl. Ostrin and her brother over holidays, weekends, and when she was sick, her fellow soldiers picked her up from to take her to doctor appointments.

Now that things have settled down, Cpl Ostrin is enjoying every minute of her job. She has already begun receiving job offers to work on bomb squads and similar security-related teams both in Israel and abroad, but is focusing on the present. “Serving in the army, in a job I wanted to do, is more rewarding than anything else. I’m doing it for the good of the people around me and the good of the country.”

IDF Spokesperson's Office

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/idf-blog-blogs/meet-a-19-year-old-explosives-expert/2013/08/08/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: