Thursday, May 2

Of Reynolds, Rats, and Rotten Puns

Well, I am going to chalk this one up to growing pains at a new paper, but Professor Glenn "Instapundit" Reynolds's much-anticipated story on intellectual property and Big Media does not appear to have found its way into this morning's New York Sun. In fact, the paper seems a bit thin on interesting news of any kind today--a sharp break from recent editions, which have seen the paper find its voice and test it out on some controversial subjects (see, "Return of the Red Menace, below). The most interesting story is plucked from the AP wire and involves the creation of "Bionic" rats by a team of scientists led by Prof. John Chapin at SUNY Brooklyn. By implanting tiny electrodes, attached to small powerpack backpacks, in the rats' brains, the scientists were able to control their movement, sort of like living remote control cars. The brief description claims that "[w]hen signaled by a laptop computer, the electrodes stimulated the rodents' brains and cued them to scurry in the desired direction, then rewarded them by stimulating a pleasure center in the brain." The scientists hope that the technology may someday be used to recover survivors and locate bodies in disaster areas. There is no link to the NY Sun story, of course, but Lane has kindly pointed out another source for the story, complete with cute picture.

The other noteworthy feature (and I use that term generously) of the Sun today is a ludicrously titled piece on the "first-ever" (!) Museum of Salad, which is announced with the headline "Caesar The Moment: 'Salad Museum' Opens Its Doors at South Street Seaport" and the subheading "Lettuce Ponder The History Of The Green Leafy Stuff, At A New Tourist Destination That Can't Be Beet." All I can say is, sprout time.