This Week in the News…

Posted: February 2, 2001 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Following are highlights of national news coverage George Mason received during the past week:

Friday, Jan. 26, Christian Science Monitor

In a Surge of Regionalism, More Southerners Are Waving Flags and Defending Confederate Icons

“In the end, the reawakening of Confederate ideals is about much more than tugging on an old flag. Deeper historical, religious, and political forces are at work, says Walter Williams, chairman of the economics department at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. ‘A lot of this might be the resurrection of some … issues that led up to the War Between the States in 1861,’ he says. ‘Specifically, the heavy-handedness of the federal government. And that’s why you’re seeing a lot of renewed interest in the 10th Amendment and states’ rights.'”

Sunday, Jan. 28, New York Times

Bush Rules! It’s Good to Be the President

Jay Cochran III, who analyzes government regulations as a fellow at the Mercatus Center, a research institute at George Mason University, found that all recent administrations had rushed regulations onto the books in their final hours in power. He calls it the ‘Cinderella constraint.’ But he found that none had done it as aggressively as the Clinton administration.”

Monday, Jan. 29, Electronic Engineering Times

Software Legislation Foes Redouble Efforts

“After having little luck in their first two attempts to counter state legislation regarding software licensing, the IEEE-USA and other groups are pushing harder to slow the passage of the Uniform Computer Information Transaction Act (UCITA) in other states. Maryland and Virginia passed the bill last year, but revising that law is reportedly considered one of the big technology issues facing the Virginia state legislature this year…. ‘If [UCITA] happens, it lets someone write a license that avoids any liability on the side of the provider, which we think is a pretty bad idea,’ said Mark Pullen, a professor at the George Mason University School of Information Technology and Engineering (Fairfax, Va.), who has spearheaded the IEEE-USA’s activities on UCITA. ‘It also lets them prevent reverse engineering.'”

Tuesday, Jan. 30, New York Times

A Dream of Fighting Epilepsy With a Flip of a Brain Switch

“The new paper, which describes research done at the Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., and financed by the National Institutes of Health and the Whitaker Foundation, took as its starting point earlier work showing that electric fields could affect the firing of individual neurons or slices of brain tissue containing many neurons…. The work was led by Dr. Bruce J. Gluckman of the physics and astronomy department at George Mason and Dr. Steven J. Schiff of the psychology department there. It also involved Hanh Nguyen at George Mason and Dr. Steven Weinstein of the Children’s National Medical Center of Washington…. The normal firing patterns of neurons in brain tissue are complicated and, Dr. Gluckman acknowledged, difficult to understand. But when a seizure begins, ‘a whole group of neurons all of a sudden do something together,’ firing in a kind of sporadic synchrony, he said. ‘The dynamic that generates the burst is much simpler than what all of the individual actors are doing.’… Dr. Schiff, who is also a neurosurgeon specializing in epilepsy, said the long-term goal of the work was to develop alternative treatments for focal epilepsy, a form of epilepsy that is often treated by removing parts of the brain when drugs are ineffective.”

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