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This is a very special site for me. I can express this way my perception of reality through these photo image creations and share them with you as if you were at my home.

Gloria Fuertes: a spanish poet committed to children
27 November 2014

      Today, is 16 years ago, that died the spanish writer, Gloria Fuertes. And, today, I want to talk about her, because it was funny to me to hear her speaking, with that sweetness that she spoke with children in mind.

      I want you to watch a video, where you can see to Gloria, talking a little bit. If you want to watch this video, please click below:

http://www.rtve.es/alacarta/videos/personajes-en-el-archivo-de-rtve/muere-gloria-fuertes-1998/1251235/

Alfredo Urdaci: “Gloria Fuertes has left us. She will be buried tomorrow at about 11 and a half, in the South Cemetery, in Madrid. The writer leaves us an intimate collection of stories and poems, which made it one of the characters most loved by children ..., also for the elderly, among whom she was always "a big girl, with voice of rag".

Gloria Fuertes: “I had a forbidden love ... and I was happy, I had forbidden books .... and I was happy. Now, when I go to bed, when I got up before and .......I do not know if I am happy”.

Voice in off: “She had a difficult childhood: her mother was angry, every time she saw her with a book; but, against all odds, Gloria Fuertes was determined to be what she was: a Poet, not a Poetess, woman verse in chest, strong and tender, and with a great sense of humor”

Gloria Fuertes: “It is pretty hard to be happy, one afternoon; but we must try to be happy, so I will take a friend, who calls Tenta, to always be happy (with Tenta)”. Note: Happy = Glad = Contento or Contenta = Con Tenta = With Tenta.

Marisa D. Galilea (Voice in off): “Poet of children; but also for adults, Gloria Fuertes leaves more than 60 books, simple stories and verses, full of love for life”

Gloria Fuertes: “Yes, I liked life .... and I like it...., because it had had all, as all human beings; but no one can take away from me the pleasure, I have already enjoyed…… Anyway, ... I have been applauded by children, I have been applauded by young people, I have been read and ... that makes me happy”.

      Well, I am sure that Gloria is doing laugh Angels.

      Until my next post, kind regards,

Luis.

Sponsored by Costaluz Lawyers.

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To convert bread in plastic in Spain
25 November 2014

       

        Today I have discovered a Spanish Project, which I found to be very interesting . It demonstrates how to convert bread into plastic.

      I thought that would be impossible until I saw the video explaining the process. If like me you are curious please watch it for yourselves by clicking the link below:

 http://www.rtve.es/alacarta/videos/agrosfera/agrosfera-laboratorio-ideas-envases-pan/2855040/

Voice in off: “The project is called "Bread4PLA". These are the initials of the Acid Poly Lactic, which is the product obtained from the fermentation of bark and waste bread. Combined with biodegradable plastic, high quality plastic is produced”.

Rosa González (Researcher of AIMPLAS. Technology Institute of plastic): ”We are working with the Industry that deals with waste bread and pastries because these are completely clean and there is an abundance of this waste. Moreover, they also contain a source of starch and sugars”.

Narrator: “In the Technology Centre for cereals,located in Germany, the fermentation was completed and the English won the Polymer”.

Eva Verdejo Andrés (Department of Sustainability of AIMPLAS. Technology Institute of Plastic): “If we look at the amount of waste food, that is discarded at a national and European level, for food production companies it is posing a very serious problem for them”.

Narrator:“Here we see that when the compound has been formulated and moulded,this worthless waste can now be formulated to make the most ideal plastic film for bags, boxes for pasta and pastries”.

Rosa Gonzalez: ”Similar containers and traditional packaging of Polypropylene can now be produced within the food industry”.

Narrator: “It has hard to believe that all this has been achieved from a wasted loaf of bread”.

Eva Verdejo: “Well, what we done is turn this matter into another different raw material, for example in the case of the project “Bread4PLA”,we have produced a plastic film that can be reused and not just in the industry of bread and pasta”.

Paco Alonso,(Voice in off. Editorial department Valencia):“Validated in a pilot plant, this new development has managed to give value to a residue, which, until today, was only used in animal feed”.

         Well, I think this video shows that once again in Spain we have very good researchers conducting worthwhile projects.

      Until my next post, kind regards,

Luis.

Sponsored by Costaluz Lawyers.

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Bottlenose dolphins in the Strait of Gibraltar and the Gulf of Cadiz (South of Spain) are different species
21 November 2014

      

         

      Bottle nose dolphin populations in the Gulf of Cadiz and the Strait of Gibraltar are "genetically similar", however researches have now discovered that there is no contact between individuals of both communities.This was discovered by the studies of the Doñana Biological Station, the Higher Council for Scientific Research (EBD-CSIC) and the Association for Conservation, Information and Research on Cetaceans (Circe), with the participation of Cepsa, as reported by Circe in a note.

    The researchers have found, using the technique of photo-identification, that the 332 bottlenose dolphins, identified in the Gulf of Cadiz, and the 450 previously identified in the Strait are "isolated pods among which there is no contact or exchange of individuals".

Bottlenose dolphins 

         The analyzes of skin samples, obtained by biopsy, also confirm that these individuals are fed from different reservoirs.

      The researchers from the EBD-CSIC, Manuela G. Forero and Renaud de Stephanis, estimate that these data "indicate the existence of two ecotypes of bottlenose dolphins: a more oceanic, which feeds into the central canyon of the Gibraltar Strait (deepwater) and the other one, in the Gulf of Cadiz, found in more coastal waters, moving into Portuguese waters".

      This geographical separation between the two populations, in his view, is "striking" and is a result "with important implications for management and conservation". "We are in front of two differentiate management units, with different storage potential problems", announced Circe.

      A survery was carried out over three years within a project, entitled 'Abundance and Distribution of Apical Predators in the Gulf of Cadiz', which commenced in 2011 and during this period six surveys were conducted. On several occasions during the project, pods of Bottle nose dolphins were located between Ayamonte (Huelva) and Tarifa (Cadiz).

      Well. I found this news very interesting. I did not know it…; I though that all the dolphins were equal.

      I should love to sail in a little ship, in order to see the dolphins, in the Strait; but the problem is that I get seasick in ships.

      But I hope that you can come to Tarifa, for example, where you can go in a ship, very famous, whip goes out from the port of Tarifa to the Strait.ç

      Until my next post, kind regards,

Luis.

Sponsored by Costaluz Lawyers.

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Designed in Spain a camera capable of taking photos of a hidden object
11 November 2014

      Spanish scientists, in collaboration with researchers from America, have designed the first camera that is capable of capturing slow movement of light and photograph objects that may be hidden behind a corner or in a shady environment ie. smoke and fire.

    Thanks to this system, Firefighters would have the ability to see if there are persons in a room with smoke or indeed if the room is empty.

 

The system is called “Femto-Photography”.

 

 

     

      This product could end up being used in complicated search and rescue operations and also for medical imaging purposes. It is capable of passing through body tissue,similar to an X-Ray but not harmful to the body.

 

"Femto-Photography” will be able to detect objects hidden from view around a wall or corner without it having to be in the direct line of view.

 

       Diego Gutierrez ,Researcher of the Institute of Engineering Research at Aragon, University of Zaragoza, along with scientists from the Media Lab Institute of Technology Massachussets, U.S.A. participated in the design of this prototype system, which has attracted the attention of researchers worldwide.

      The camera, which features a laser with a “femtosecond” frequency, is able to capture a "billion frames per second", allowing you to see how light propagates itself, Gutierrez has told EFE.

      Gutierrez stated “Currently, image capture devices cannot photograph the movement of light, due to its speed (300,000 kms per second).

      However, this camera slows down time, until a factor of 15,000 million, which allows you to view, for example, how the light goes off bulb and spreads through the rest of the room, and from there, enter a new visual information.

      "It is the slower camera that exists. No one had been able to see how light travels at 300,000 kilometers per second", he commented.

      From now on, the goal of the groups participating in the project, also I3A, is to apply this technique, which now exists only in the laboratory, to other areas.

      It has a great potential, according to Gutierrez, because you get to photograph a hidden object behind a corner, something impossible for other mechanisms, as they have some periods of "huge" shutter, compared to the speed of light.

      Let us say your cat is hidden around the corner, the laser will bounce off whatever surface (like the wall) to hit the animal, and then light will travel back the same route.

      As you are able to do this, this system will also allow you to see through turbid media, such as smoke or water, which would facilitate the work, in a fire or in an underwater rescue. For example, Search Teams would have the ability to look into a smoky room, in which you cannot usually see anything. They would be able to detect persons or discover it to be empty.

      It would assist in their searching techniques without losing too much time!

      Gutierrez added: “In the medical field problems can be similar because tissue scatters light, so much so that the coherence of the image is lost and not displayed but the information is present". "X-rays are able to overcome this boundary and penetrate tissue, without this dispersion occurs; but must be used with "caution" because they cause damage", he said. However, in theory, this unit may irradiate the body with normal light and obtain the same information, provided by the X-rays, but without being harmful to the organism.

      This research, published by Diego Gutierrez and scientists from MIT Media Lab, has attracted the attention of China, where the government has spent ten of millions of euros, to advance this line, said Gutierrez.

       Meanwhile, Spain is “holding back", whilst a year ago it was “on the "grid", of this project but now according to Gutierrez “public and private administrations are not being to research”.

      The I3A have 31,000 euros for a year, thanks to a grant from the BBVA Foundation; but, in order that some of these applications are a reality, it requires "at least five years", so that Gutierrez continues looking for other funding sources.

      Well, I think it is so interesting and I hope these researchers can make this project a reality.

      Until my next post, kind regards,

Luis.

Sponsored by Costaluz Lawyers.

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A Spanish method to improve attention and memory in children
10 November 2014

      Smartick Games” is the name of a new method to allow children to improve abilities such as attention,memory,perception and reasoning and is intended to assist their academic performance, through activities online.

SmartickGames method

       The concept has been developed by researchers at the University of Granada.

      The researcher from the department of Experimental Psychology Professor Maria Rosario Rueda, explained that they designed the application with a knowledge that it allows for tasks they know "train basic processes of attention, memory and reasoning". She added "The training of these basic processes produces improvements in cognitive performance, that are measurable both cognitively and in terms of brain function”.

 

      So, on the website of SmartickGames website, you will find brain training exercises, to improve cognitive skills, such as attention and memory, needed to learn mathematics optically.

      The application analyses the performance data of children, can identify gaps, in specific skills, and provide exercises, to help improve them.

      Just like that, the program allows to measure the improvement in mathematical competence, in terms of cognitive training performed, ie see what kind of problems are best done, after you have completed your session with certain exercises.

      Meanwhile, the founder-partner of Smartick, Daniel González Vega, explained that the algorithms of the program select the type of activity and the level of difficulty, that best suits each child.  

      "It lets prescribe customized itineraries cognitive training, based in mathematical exercises performance, depending on the behavior and learning outcomes in training games, suggesting changes in the curriculum of mathematical exercises", he clarified.

      In each session “Smartick” shows the most adequate exercises to each student according to their level, the time they needed for earlier exercises and it even takes into account at which exercises the student made the most mistakes in the past. It is also a great tool for parents, who can always access to the progress made by their children.      

      Everything can be done using a tablet computer and its creators claim that only 15 minutes a day are necessary to develop the student’s skills "to their maximum potential". Once they are finished with their daily exercises, children can access a game section where they train other basic cognitive skills.

     The project, that will also be available to the thousands of children who learn mathematics, with  Smartick, has the support of the Centre for Research Mind, Brain (CIMCYC), UGR, along with leaders in the areas of cognitive neuroscience, memory and language. It has also been selected,  by the European Commission, as one of the most innovative and distinguished European projects of the Horizon 2020 program.

The team of the Centre for Research Mind, Brain

        The SmartickGames activities have been designed by a team of experts in child psychology and neuropsychology, scientifically advised by researchers, at the University of Granada.

      The UGR professor, Maria Rosario Rueda, has worked for four years, in leading research groups, in the United States, and she continues to collaborate on joint project  s with American universities.

      The Professor Rueda, accompanied by  Teresa Bajo  --who is assigned assigned to the Experimentally Psychology department-- are experts in the study of higher cognitive abilities in humans, including the development of these skills and the development of programs to promote such skills throughout life.

      Well. I think it is very interesting and I hope that researchers continue searching about this issue.

      Until my next post, kind regards,

Luis.

Sponsored by Costaluz Lawyers.

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Torquemada: from the most black past to the most promising future in the History of Spain
07 November 2014

       Many villages of Spain are being left without inhabitants, because many people change the field for the city. But there are still those, who believe in a promising future in villages. This is the case of Torquemada.

      Torquemada is 21 km from Palencia (the capital). If you want to go there, you have take the highway A-62 (old road  N-620), popularly known as the “road of Portuguese”.

      I would like to bring to your attention a video, where a group of young people, who are enthusiastic about promoting their village.

      Simply click on link below to watch the video:

http://www.rtve.es/alacarta/videos/agrosfera/agrosfera-clave-rural-torquemada/2831562/

Translation of video:

Voice in off: “It is 10 am, in Torquemada, Palencia (a town in the region of the Cerrato, eastern Palencia, Castile-León, famous for their Inquisition, in the past –It is thought that, here or in Valladolid, was born Tomás de Torquemada, general inquisitor, in XV Century--).

……music………………………..

Voice in off: “Over the Winery Village district, a migratory flock……… music ..... .....The day starts between storm and Autumn storm………….Against all odds, this small town of Castile, of 1000 inhabitants, resists the ghost of rural depopulation”

Now, you can read: Torquemada, Palencia. No trace of the black legend.

Javier: “150 or 200 years ago, since wine was made here, until we came to make fight”

Voice in off: “Javier removes the branches of the grapes Merlot, at the door of his winery. Here, each family has one”

Javier: “In total, around Torquemada, there are about 580 wineries, according a currently taken a census --the last census that was done--, although, it has been calculated that there have been up to over 1000 wineries, in Torquemada”

Javier Esteban Araujo (Winery Esteban Araujo): “In the past, all these hills, that you see, all these hillocks, were vineyards absolutely everything. There, you can see a small vineyard, which is old; but, with the concentration, all the vineyards of Torquemada disappeared”.

Voice in off: “From that winemaking strength, come these underground wineries, of the fifteenth and sixteenth century, with a peculiar door opening, from the inside to outside”

Javier: “You look for the lock or the old key ....., you open ... and, then, you walk to inside the winery and, thus, some possible problems of forced are avoided…..”

Voice in off: “And we begin the descent into a winery, ten feet deep, fully excavated in argillaceous rock”

Javier: “This was a winery, that always belonged to my family –to my great great grandfather--  and here it was where they started, with much effort, in the old press, the press spindle, the stone; a very rudimentary way, compared to what we have now:  completely new barrels of American and French oak ....; fermentation in stainless steel; aged in bottle on wine racks .... “

Voice In off: “Between all, the Javier´s winery is the only one, where makes and sells the wine with certificate of origin Arlanza is made and sold”

Javier: “Everything we produce we sell….., in fact, people are already waiting for the release of the new rosé and oak 2012”

Voice in off: “Javier is 28 years old and his project, which includes a future distilling pomace, encourages him to put down roots in the village ... "

………music…………………………

Jorge Martínez Antonio (Mayor of Torquemada): “There has been movement, entrepreneurship ... mainly aimed at the food industry, our area is mainly agricultural and great importance to this transformation, to the food industry ...; well, but we are keeping the type, as they say ... "

Voice in off: “That is no small….”

………music………………….

Voice in off: “In one of the 11 bars of Torquemada, we find bustle of morning and a craft beer, made ​​in a mini-factory, behind the bar, they are another two of the young people, who make and bottle the beer Torquemada, 100 per 100 home-loving”

Alvaro Fernandez (Maker of beer): “We elaborate it with malt, hops and water ....., we do not add anything more ...: no additives or coloring, or anything ....”

Voice in off: “He is preparing a shipment for the Fair Beer Vitoria. Craft beers have power of persuasion”

Alvaro Fernandez: “Each beer is for anything…., These beers also worth to go to eat tapas ... or anything ...; it is to sit down, enjoy ... take a good beer and taste the beer”

Marisa de los Mozos (Restaurant “Catalina from Austria”): “Why to go somewhere else, if we have all here? ... And they make wonderful breads ... sweets .....”

Voice in off: “Marisa has made a hearty still life, only with local food. She shows us her  star dessert, layered, with jam green peppers, red peppers and goat cheese cream. Her  contribution, to the gastronomic history of Torquemada, is a Medieval dessert”

Marisa: “It is made with almond milk and….with rice, spices, honey .... It takes more than 4 hours to make; but it is exquisite”

Voice in off: “Cinnamon, as a final touch .... The dessert is elaborated by Marisa, each January 14th, the Birthday of Catherine of Austria (Queen of Portugal), daughter of "Juana la loca", who was born, in Torquemada, and was baptized in this church, in 1507 ........... The music from the Renaissance, by the Composer from Burgos, Antonio de Cabezón ....; Federico Acítores plays it; he is a master organ maker, in one of the portable organ, manufactured in his workshop Torquemada”.

Federico: “I was born here, I am from here…it is my village, right?”

Voice in off: “This is what explains the installation of this factory, as specialized as craft, in a little village of Palencia”

Federico: “Germany has a long tradition of organ builders and sometimes some colleagues come visiting and, when they see it, they says: "In Germany, I do not know any workshop so" but it is true”

Voice in off: “Here, 13 people work, in the restoration of old organs, and in the manufacture of new”

Federico: “…. In Catalonia;  In Asturias, we have made a few; in Castilla-Leon --here mostly restorations; but there are also new (for example Conservatory of Salamanca, Palencia Conservatory”

Voice in off: “The portable organ, that Frederick opens and plays for us, is of wood of oak, with tubes of tin and lead; he just built it,  in his workshop, at the foot of the Pisuerga (river), on the left bank of the river; on the right bank, is the mill”

Marta Gordo: (Cottage “Mill of Torquemada”): “It was an important mill .... In Torquemada, there are several mills; but, well, this is preserved and it is also preserved as the original: gates, regulating the flow, and stones to grind wheat. The cellar from the thirteenth century .., XVI reformed, and this is the historic part and what it takes 600 years here, without moving”

Voice in off: “Since 5 years ago, the mill of Torquemada is a Cottage, with capacity for 10 people”

Marta: “As a mill, the river passes under, and then all rooms are facing outside and well….but, of course, you have the opportunity to fish even from the bed ...”

Voice in off: “ or take a hot bath, skim the river ... from a corner, which has marked the life of the village”

Marga Gallego: “And the question, that many of us do, when we know the village of Torquemada, is if it has something to do with the famous general Inquisitor, Tomás from Torque, and the truth, the answer is yes, it has something to do; but, what happens is that it is difficult a lot to find his trail in the village”

Eva María Enriquez (In charge of the Museum of Torquemada): “Throughout the village, it is the only place, in which the name of the famous Inquisitor, Tomas from Torquemada, is mentioned”

Voice in off: “It is the Museum of the town”

Eva María: “It is a historical figure, practically known, both in Spain and beyond its borders; but it has been tried to cover his story under the rug ...”

Voice in off: “The museum recreates a wealthy cottage, of the 60s, full of utensils, recognizing anyone, over 50 years old.......... However, to the Inquisitor Torquemada is only dedicated a portrait”.

Eva María: “It is known that his family came from here ...; it is certain, in some letters, that Thomas wrote to people from here, the village --most notably, with the bridge—“

Voice in off: “The majesty of the bridge, with 25 eyes over the Pisuerga, is due to the favor of Tomas de Torquemada. Also, the imposing church of Santa Eulalia ...... However, residents condemn the Inquisitor to forget the damn characters”

Jorge Martínez Antonio (the Mayor): “But, defining a particular site, a place in which he lived .... but I do not know, either know people who know where his family were living ... Of course, with all that was happening of the Inquisition, logically it gives the creeps”

Voice in off: “The most famous of Torquemada, which gives pride to its inhabitants, is a humble fruit and vegetable product: peppers”

José García (A farmer): “Autochthonous, because this seed comes from when my father put it, we are still holding it and .... well, planting it”

Voice in off: “José and his family spend their allotment. We are at the end of the season, this year poorer than usual, but the pepper retains its qualities”

José García: “Pepper from Torquemada ...... its 4 noses ... What do I know? .... the thickness that it has: an inch, inch and a half and, above all, the flavour, a so good flavor,  that it has ... .... sweet”

Piedad Villasur (Producer Piedad peppers): “You can roast peppers, jam .... so many things you can do with them ...”

Voice in off: “Each Autumn, the village dedicates a festival to the local pepper ....; It is an honor received from land and it provides its grateful name: “Pepper from Torquemada”........ About the Inquisitor Cardinal Torquemada, nobody wants to remember here…….”

       After watching this video, I think it is very unfair for Spain, in general, to have an image of "a corrupt country"abroad because the corrupt people are few and far between. Although they have caused much damage,fortunately, many millions of Spaniards are simply honest hard workers who want to get Spain out of this crisis and they are trying with great effort as depicted by the people featured in this video that I have brought to your attention today.

      I hope that corruption ends soon and tax havens disappear in the world.

      Until my next post, kind regards,

Luis,

Sponsored by Costaluz Lawyers.

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A great fish cooked by me in Southern Spain
05 November 2014

        

      Today, I cooked for lunch,"Gilt-head bream with potatoes and red pepper in the oven" (also known as Royal Bream).

      Yesterday morning I purchased two gilt-head bream, which cost 10 Euros ( 9 Euros per kilo).

     Ingredients you will require to cook this dish ;-

2 gilt-head bream.

4 potatoes.

1 large onion.

1/2 red pepper.

3 garlic cloves.

1 lemon.

Parsley.

Olive oil.

White wine.

Salt.

and water.

 

Method;-

      Pre heat the oven to 180º C (top and bottom).

      Firstly cut the potatoes into slices, not too thick,then cut the onions into quarters.

      Place the potatoes and onion in a frying pan and cook until brown,then layer them in an oven proof dish previously coated with olive oil.(meat dish will do fine).

      Then add 3 cloves of raw chopped garlic.

      Place both gilt-head bream on top of the potatoes and the onion.

      Add salt all over the fish and the dish.

      Then add some fresh chopped parsley on top.

      Chop a pepper into small pieces and add them to the fish.

      Mix 1/2 cup white wine and 1/2 cup of water and pour it over the fish.

      Put 2 slices across each fish and push in a wedge of lemon.

      Place in oven and ensure the mixture does not go dry by adding more water to to the container.

      Finally after a total of 45 minutes in the oven ,remove from oven and serve,see below.

      My finished result:

My baking sheet with Gilt-head bream

     

        Really, if I say so myself, all modesty aside, it tasted delicious.

      The fish was so fresh and it produced a beautiful flavour.

       I do hope that you will try this recipe one day yourselves.

       If I can do it,you can !

 

       Until my next post, kind regards,

Luis.

Sponsored by Costaluz Lawyers.

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