Wikipedia articles of interest

1. Ploidy.

2. African slave trade. From the article:

“In Senegambia, between 1300 and 1900, close to one-third of the population was enslaved. In early Islamic states of the western Sudan, including Ghana (750–1076), Mali (1235–1645), Segou (1712–1861), and Songhai (1275–1591), about a third of the population were slaves. In Sierra Leone in the 19th century about half of the population consisted of slaves.”


“Slavery as practised in what is modern Ethiopia and Eritrea was essentially domestic. Slaves thus served in the houses of their masters or mistresses, and were not employed to any significant extent for productive purpose. Slaves were thus regarded as second-class members of their owners’ family,[9] and were fed, clothed and protected. Women were taken as sex slaves. They generally roamed around freely and conducted business as free people. They had complete freedom of religion and culture.” [‘…as long as their culture and religion were compatible with the concepts of (forced) sex on demand, forced labour ect.’, US]


“The very earliest external slave trade was the trans-Saharan slave trade. Although there had long been some trading up the Nile River and very limited trading across the western desert, the transportation of large numbers of slaves did not become viable until camels were introduced from Arabia in the 10th century. By this point, a trans-Saharan trading network came into being to transport slaves north. Zanzibar was once East Africa’s main slave-trading port, and under Omani Arabs in the 19th century as many as 50,000 slaves were passing through the city each year.[33][34] Most historians estimate that between 11 and 18 million African slaves crossed the Red Sea, Indian Ocean, and Sahara Desert from 650 AD to 1900 AD,[35][36] Frequent intermarriages meant that the slaves were assimilated in North Africa. Unlike in the Americas, slaves in North Africa were mainly servants and soldiers rather than labourers, and a greater number of females than males were taken, who were often employed as servants, forced into prostitution or to become the women of harems.[37]”


“Slavery in Mauritania was finally criminalized in August 2007.[81]” […] “In Niger, where the practice of slavery was outlawed in 2003, a study found that almost 8% of the population are still slaves.[84][85]”

In case any of you had doubts about that, both Niger and Mauritania are members of UN and have been since the beginning of the 60’es. Something to keep in mind the next time the UN criticises Israel for human rights violations?

3) Electron microscopy.

4) Herbivore. An interesting bit from the article (I did not want to link to the other article about Kleiber’s law itself as I think it’s poorly written):

“Kleiber’s law explains the relationship between the size of the animal and the feeding strategy it uses. In essence, it says that larger animals need to eat less food, per unit weight, than smaller animals.[13] Kleiber’s law states that the metabolic rate (q0) of an animal is the mass of the animal (M) raise[d] to the 3/4th power […]

Therefore, the mass of the animal increases at a faster rate th[a]n the metabolic rate.”

I knew that last part, I didn’t know the precise relationship nor that this observation/relationship had a name.

5) Lieserl Einstein.

6) Kronecker product. Partly study-related link, I’ve come across this stuff during my studies before.


February 24, 2011 - Posted by | Biology, Genetics, History, Mathematics, Wikipedia, Zoology

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