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Kornukopia - thread for miskellaneous K subjekts.

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943104.  Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:35 am Reply with quote

Eric Kandel is a bowtie enthusiast, a Nobel laureate and an absolutely brilliant neuroscientist.

When he was a child, his family fled from Vienna to the United States to escape Nazi occupation. In the US, he was taught Judaic studies by his uncle, and later studied history and literature as an undergraduate at Harvard University. While he was there he also became interested in learning and memory, and decided to approach the question in a biological way (rather impressive, considering most psychologists at the time advocated for a strict separation between psychology and biology).

Fast forward to 2000, and he's a co-recepient of the Nobel Prize in Medicine for his work on how memory is encoded in neurons. We owe a huge amount to the discoveries that this man has made.

Two interesting notes;
1. It was claimed in Vienna that Kandel was an "Austrian Nobel," a fact that he found annoying. Kandel pointed out that he's lived in the United States since he was 6 years old, and that his prize should be seen as a Jewish-American success. Austria has since made amends, and Kandel has once again involved himself with the culture there.
2. Eric Kandel wrote the book The Age of Insight, about how many intellectuals from Vienna have endeavored, in various disciplines, to understand the unconscious. The cover of the book (at least in every edition I've ever seen) features a painting by Gustav K (another "K" name!).

943811.  Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:17 pm Reply with quote

On a personal note, my three favorite science fiction authors all have K as their middle initial. Philip K. Dick, Ursula K. LeGuin and Richard K. Morgan.

QI (for fans of science fiction): Philip K. Dick and Ursula K. LeGuin went to high school together, they they probably didn't know each other at the time.

Spud McLaren
943818.  Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:24 pm Reply with quote

Webster100 wrote:
... Philip K. Dick ....
Curious middle name...
Webster100 wrote:
... Richard K. Morgan....
Anybody know what the K stands for here?

943839.  Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:24 pm Reply with quote

Philip Kindred Dick

943900.  Fri Oct 05, 2012 5:43 pm Reply with quote

As for Richard [K] Morgan, as he credits himself on his website, it's apparently Kingsley. He doesn't like it much.

Spud McLaren
943908.  Fri Oct 05, 2012 6:09 pm Reply with quote

'yorz wrote:
Philip Kindred Dick
As I said, curious.
suze wrote:
As for Richard [K] Morgan, as he credits himself on his website, it's apparently Kingsley. He doesn't like it much.
Thank you, suze.

944084.  Sat Oct 06, 2012 5:09 pm Reply with quote

I've also just remembered Brian K. Vaughan, a comic book and television writer. In his case, the K stands for Keller.

944261.  Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:43 am Reply with quote

I mentioned this a few years ago, but it may have been lost in the great thread purge.

Killing oneself

Q: On what film set was an actor found hanged?

K: Wizard of Oz (one of the munchkins who was spurned by Judy Garland)

A: Back to the Future III

According to Michael J Fox's autobiography, he was filming a scene in which Marty McFly was hanged by a mob. In the film (and indeed, in real life) he was supposed to put his hand between the noose and his neck, but on one occasion, he didn't put his hand in the right place and he lost consciousness.

Last edited by swot on Mon Oct 08, 2012 8:55 am; edited 1 time in total

944297.  Mon Oct 08, 2012 8:54 am Reply with quote

Another one for Kids - experiments this time.

945217.  Sun Oct 14, 2012 1:07 pm Reply with quote

I often forget that "Kevlar" is a registered trademark of the DuPont company. It was first used in racing tires, though now it's mostly known for comprising bullet proof vests. However, a kevlar vest is quite bad at stopping the blade of a knife.

Maybe you should bring a knife to a gunfight?

946144.  Fri Oct 19, 2012 11:30 am Reply with quote

QI is the sap-sucking sea slug, the only known animal to use kleptoplasty.

Basically, the slugs consume algae, and then steal their chloroplasts (the tiny solar factories that allow them to preform photosynthesis). The slugs keep these chloroplasts running inside their own bodies, effectively making themselves solar-powered!

946315.  Sat Oct 20, 2012 12:51 pm Reply with quote

Did we mention Jerome Klapka Jerome?


947614.  Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:46 am Reply with quote

The spooky, fascinating story of the yacht, Kaz II

The Kaz II... was found drifting 88 nmi (163 km) off of the northern coast of Australia on 18 April 2007. The fate of her three-man crew remains unknown.

The first indication that there was a problem came on 18 April, when it was spotted by a helicopter, which reported that the boat was drifting in the vicinity of the Great Barrier Reef, and that its crew were potentially in distress. On 20 April, maritime authorities caught up with the boat and boarded it. They found the three-man crew missing in circumstances which they described as being "strange."

Basically, there was absolutely no sign of any of the three men. On board, they found most things to be in order, including working laptops and wet towels that were left out to dry. There was also some video footage of them men on their last day, and though it didn't show anything dramatic, it did provide a few clues. Specifically, the boat's fenders were hanging on the outside, leading to speculation that they had been boarded by another vessel.


948009.  Mon Oct 29, 2012 10:43 am Reply with quote

I was looking for the significance of the name Ketzel when I came across this. I worry about people sometimes.

948023.  Mon Oct 29, 2012 12:15 pm Reply with quote

That's a fabulous story, swot.

I note from it the word kavanah, a Hebrew word meaning a state of mental concentration needed to perform mitzvot.


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