Revenge of the Nerds is a 1984 comedy film satirizing social life on a college campus. The film stars Robert Carradine and Anthony Edwards, with Curtis Armstrong, Ted McGinley, Julia Montgomery, Brian Tochi, Larry B. Scott, John Goodman, and Donald Gibb. The film was directed by Jeff Kanew. The film’s storyline chronicles of a group of nerds trying to stop harassment by the persecuting jock fraternity, the Alpha Betas. Revenge of the Nerds is #91 on Bravo’s “100 Funniest Movies.” The main characters’ names are a play on a the name of the famous American physical chemist, Lewis N. Gilbert, who studied acids, bases and photo-phosphorescence.
Rosalyn Sussman Yalow was an American medical physicist, and a co-winner of the 1977 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (together with Roger Guillemin and Andrew Schally) for development of the radioimmunoassay (RIA) technique. She was the second woman to be awarded the Nobel Prize Physiology or Medicine after Gerty Cori. Born in Manhattan to Simon and Clara (née Zipper) Sussman, she attended Walton High School. Knowing how to type, she won a part-time position as secretary to Dr. Rudolf Schoenheimer, a leading biochemist at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons. Not believing that any good graduate school would admit and provide financial support to a woman, she took a job as a secretary to Michael Heidelberger, another biochemist at Columbia, who hired her on the condition that she studied stenography. She graduated from Hunter College in January 1941. In mid-February of that aforementioned year she received an offer of a teaching assistantship in physics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with the primary reason being that World War II commenced and many men went off to war and the university decided to offer scholarships for women rather than shut down. That summer she took two tuition-free physics courses under government auspices at New York University. At the University of Illinois, she was the only woman among the department’s 400 members, and the first since 1917. She married fellow student Aaron Yalow, the son of a rabbi, in June 1943. They had two children and kept a kosher home. Yalow earned her Ph.D in 1945. After graduating, Yalow joined the Bronx Veterans Administration Hospital to help set up its radioisotope service. There she collaborated with Solomon Berson to develop radioimmunoassay (RIA). RIA is a radioisotope tracing technique that allows the measurement of tiny quantities of various biological substances in human blood as well as a multitude of other aqueous fluids. RIA testing relies on the creation of two reagents. One reagent is a molecule that is the product of covalently bonding a radioactive isotope atom with a molecule of the target. The second reagent is an antibody which specifically chemically reacts with the target substance. The measurement of target signal is done using both reagents. They are mixed with the fluid containing an unknown concentration of target to me measured. The radioactive atom supplies a signal that can be monitored. The target supplied from the unknown concentration solution displaces the radiolabelled target bond to the antibody. Originally used to study insulin levels in diabetes mellitus, the technique has since been applied to hundreds of other substances – including hormones, vitamins and enzymes – all too small to detect previously. Despite its huge commercial potential, Yalow and Berson refused to patent the method. In 1968, Yalow was appointed Research Professor in the Department of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital, where she later became the Solomon Berson Distinguished Professor at Large.
Aliens is a 1986 science fiction action film directed by James Cameron and starring Sigourney Weaver, Carrie Henn, Michael Biehn, Lance Henriksen, William Hope, and Bill Paxton. A sequel to the 1979 film Alien, Aliens follows Weaver’s character Ellen Ripley as she returns to the planet where her crew encountered the hostile Alien creature, this time accompanied by a unit of Colonial Marines. Aliens’ action-adventure tone was in contrast to the horror motifs of the original Alien. Following the success of The Terminator (1984), which helped establish Cameron as a major action director, 20th Century Fox greenlit Aliens with a budget of approximately $18 million. It was filmed in England at Pinewood Studios and at a decommissioned power plant. Aliens grossed $86 million at the domestic box office during its 1986 theatrical release and $131 million internationally. The movie was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including a Best Actress nomination for Sigourney Weaver. It won in the categories of Sound Effects Editing and Visual Effects. It won eight Saturn Awards, including Best Science Fiction Film, Best Actress for Weaver and Best Direction for Cameron.
Cory Efram Doctorow is a Canadian-British blogger, journalist, and science fiction author who serves as co-editor of the weblog Boing Boing. He is an activist in favour of liberalising copyright laws and a proponent of the Creative Commons organization, using some of their licences for his books. Some common themes of his work include digital rights management, file sharing, and “post-scarcity” economics. Doctorow began selling fiction when he was 17 years old and sold several stories followed by publication of his story “Craphound” during 1998. Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, Doctorow’s first novel, was published during January 2003, and was the first novel released under one of the Creative Commons licences, allowing readers to circulate the electronic edition as long as they neither made money from it nor used it to create derived works. The electronic edition was released simultaneously with the print edition. During March 2003, it was re-released with a different Creative Commons licence that allowed derivative works such as fan fiction, but still prohibited commercial usage. It was nominated for a Nebula Award, and won the Locus Award for Best First Novel during 2004. A semi-sequel short story named Truncat was published on Salon.com in August 2003. Doctorow’s other novels have been released with Creative Commons licences that allow derived works and prohibit commercial usage, and he has used the model of making digital versions available, without charge, at the same time that print versions are published.
Billy L. Mitchell is an eletronic sports player who is best known for recording high scores in classic video games from the Golden Age of Arcade Games. He has been claimed by some as the “greatest arcade-video-game player of all time”. His achievements include the first perfect score in Pac-Man. He owns the “Rickey’s World Famous Restaurant” chain, based in Hollywood, Florida. He uses the same brand to sell a line of hot sauces, “Rickey’s World Famous Sauces”. The 2007 documentary The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters tells the story of newcomer Steve Wiebe’s attempt to surpass Billy Mitchell’s high score at the game Donkey Kong, which Mitchell had set in 1982. On July 26, 2007, in celebration of the film’s release and the 25th anniversary of Mitchell’s first record-setting performance, Mitchell again played in public and retook the Donkey Kong record with a score of 1,050,200, though that score was surpassed on February 26, 2010 by Hank Chien, who was temporarily the record holder at Donkey Kong. However, Mitchell reclaimed his title once again on July 24, 2010. On September 20, 2010, Steve Wiebe once again took the title with a score of 1,064,500. As of February 27, 2011, Hank Chien re-took the record with a score of 1,090,400.
Jeff Jarvis is an American journalist. He is the former television critic for TV Guide and People magazine, creator of Entertainment Weekly, Sunday editor and associate publisher of the New York Daily News, and a columnist on the San Francisco Examiner. He is a co-host on This Week in Google along with Leo Laporte and Gina Trapani, a show on the TWiT Network which covers cloud computing and social networking. In 2009, Jarvis wrote a book called, “What Would Google Do?” In the book, he discusses how companies can become successful like Google, and talks about how Google, and other top websites, such as Facebook, Craigslist, Wikipedia, and Digg, have changed the business model. He gives advice on how companies can copy Google’s success, and how other successful companies have already done so, such a Dell and Apple.
Gertrude Margaret Lowthian Bell was an English writer, traveller, political officer, administrator, and archaeologist who explored, mapped, and became highly influential to British imperial policy-making due to her extensive travels in Greater Syria, Mesopotamia, Asia Minor, and Arabia. Along with T. E. Lawrence, Bell helped establish the Hashemite dynasties in what is today Jordan as well as in Iraq. She played a major role in establishing and helping administer the modern state of Iraq, utilizing her unique perspective from her travels and relations with tribal leaders throughout the Middle East. During her lifetime she was highly esteemed and trusted by British officials and given an immense amount of power for a woman at the time. She has also been described as “one of the few representatives of His Majesty’s Government remembered by the Arabs with anything resembling affection”.