Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Buddhism is a religion, a realistic philosophy, and arguably a psychology, focusing on the teachings of the Buddha Sakyamuni, who lived in antique India most likely from the mid-6th to the early 5th century BCE. Buddhism extend throughout the Indian subcontinent in the five centuries following the Buddha's passing, and propagated into Central, Southeast, and East Asia over the next two millennia. Today, Buddhism is divided primarily into three traditions: Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana. Buddhism continues to magnetize followers worldwide, and, with about 708 million adherents, it is considered a major world religion. Buddhism is the fourth-largest religion in the world.

When used in a generic sense, a Buddha is usually considered to be a person who discovers the true nature of reality through years of spiritual cultivation, investigation of the variety of religious practices of his time, and meditation. This transformational discovery is called bodhi - literally, "Awakening”. Any person who has become awakened from the "sleep of ignorance" by directly realizing the true nature of reality is called a Buddha.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Animals are a main group of organisms, classified as the kingdom Animalia or Meta­zoa. In general they are multi­cellular, capable of locomotion, responsive to their environment, and feed by consuming other organisms. Their body plan becomes permanent as they develop, usually early on in their development as embryos, although some undergo a process of metamorphosis later on.

The word "animal" comes from the Latin word animal, of which animalia is the plural, and is derived from anima, meaning vital breath or soul. In everyday usage animal refers to any member of the animal kingdom that is not a human being, and sometimes excludes insects. The use of the word animal in law classically reflects the common pre-scientific use of the word, roughly equivalent to what modern biology would classify as nonhuman mammal. For example, wildlife laws normally use phrases such as "animals, birds and fish."

Friday, January 05, 2007

Statue of Zeus at Olympia
The Statue of Zeus at Olympia is one of the classical Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. It was carved by the famed Classical sculptor Phidias circa 435 BC in Olympia, Greece.

The seated statue occupied the whole width of the aisle of the temple that was built to house it, and was 40 feet tall. "It seems that if Zeus were to stand up," the geographer Strabo noted early in the 1st century BC, "he would unroof the temple." Zeus was carved from ivory then covered with gold plating and was seated on a magnificent throne of cedarwood, inlaid with ivory, gold, ebony, and precious stones. In Zeus' right hand there was a small statue of Nike, the goddess of victory, and in his left hand, a shining sceptre on which an eagle perched. Visitors like the Roman general Aemilius Paulus, the victor over Macedon, were moved to awe by the godlike majesty and splendor that Phidias had captured.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

2D computer graphics
The first advance in computer graphics was in the use of CRTs. There are two approaches to 2D computer graphics: vector and raster graphics. Vector graphics stores precise geometric data, topology and style such as: coordinate positions of points, the relations between points , and the color, thickness, and possible fill of the shapes. Most vector graphic systems can also use primitives of standard shapes such as circles, rectangles, etc.

Early vector-graphics displays were monochrome CRTs where the picture was drawn by the cathode ray being motivated about the screen along the required path.On a scanning display, a vector graphic image has to be transformed to a raster image to be viewed. Raster graphics is a uniform 2-dimensional grid of pixels. Each pixel has a specific value such as, for instance, brightness, color, transparency, or a combination of such values. A raster image has a finite resolution of a specific number of rows and columns. Standard computer displays shows a raster image of resolutions such as 1280 columnsx1024 rows of pixels. Today, one often combines raster and vector graphics in complex file formats.