The Black Death

During the Middle Ages, great plagues swept across Europe, and the worst outbreak occurred in the 14th century, killing 25 million people. This deadly disease was called the Black Death, because those suffering from the disease would turn a blue-black color. Other names for it were bubonic, oriental, or Levantine plague. It spread from Asia and was brought by ships from the Black Sea to Mediterranean ports.


An 18th-century plague doctor wearing protective clothing. The beak contained “antiseptic” substances. The rod was to take pulses without touching the patient. Source: CDC

The pestilence was so infectious that villages were completely wiped out, and some reports say that one-third of all the people in England (the population was about 3 million then) died of it in two years. More than half the population of Asia and Europe may have died from the disease. In those days, when streets and houses were unhealthy and had no proper drainage, plagues happened fairly often, but the Black Death was the worst one ever known. Black rats became infected with the disease and the fleas from these animals hit other rats and humans, and so the plague quickly spread. A writer of the time said: “The cattle roamed master less over the countryside, crops rotted in the fields for lack of hands to reap them, and so few priests were alive that our Holy Father the Pope gave permission that laymen would minister to the dying.”

For the next 300 years the plague broke out at intervals, though never so badly again. With cleaner towns and rat control, the plague had practically disappeared from Europe by the end of the 17th century.

A plague epidemic began in China around 1894 and spread throughout Southeast Asia and India. During this epidemic, the plague bacteria were discovered by a Swiss scientist Aleixandre Yersin. He then developed an effective serum for inoculation against the disease.




It’s 2015, and the next “holiday” coming up is Valentine’s Day. On Valentine’s Day, which is celebrated on February 14 each year, people send cards expressing love and affection to each other. The day is named after two different saints named Valentine. Both of them lived many hundreds of years ago in Rome, Italy. No one knows why these saints are associated with the custom of sending messages of love. They name of those saints is used because February 14 is the feast day on which they are honored and celebrated.


The custom of sending greetings on St. Valentine’s Day has grown through the years, and now millions of people in the United States, and many other countries, send greeting cards or Valentines. Some of them are sent by loves. These are beautifully decorated with hearts and Cupids and other symbols of love. Some people send “comic Valentines.” A few of these are clever, but most of them are not really comic and can even be unkind or cruel. Candy and flowers also are often sent on Valentine’s Day.

Interview with Jon St. John – Duke Nukem’s Voice

st john duke nukem voice actor interview

This is a transcript of a video interview found here:

How Has Voice Acting Evolved as a Profession?

Videogame acting in the beginning was very low-paying, not very serious the scripting was not very good usually, and the directing was awful. The work environment sucks but if the benefits are nice, just in the last four or five years it’s become unionized work that pays much better than it used to be. So obviously when the pay scale went up, revenue was generated by the industry the standards came up dramatically as well now that the directors are better, voice actors are of higher quality, as well as the quality of the games are getting better and better all the time. Look at games like World of Warcraft for instance. There are over 400 characters; 400 different voices in that game, and that kind of work keeps coming aroundenough to make a lead role like that you could be working for years on just a single game, so yeah there’s plenty of work out there it’s just getting the lead roles that are tricky.

What Changed Between Duke 3-D and Duke Nukem Forever?

You remember the old games with the 8-bit lines? I have a limit of maybe 5 to 7 seconds that a line could be because they can only put so many files on a CD-ROM at the time. Now it’s wide open and there’s lots of dialogue and lots of cut scenes to put the audio audio in. So, there’s more acting in general and not just one-liners anymore but aall I just have to do is think up some anger from inside which I find easy to do because I have ex-wivesctual acting!

Where Does Your Mind Go When you Become Duke?

All I have to do this just bring up some anger from inside which I find easy to do because I have ex-wives so I just think angry and then I grit my teeth and then it just flows out; it’s very easy. There are others characters that I find challenging to do for instance in Guild Wars 2 or DotAthe where I’m a Blood Seeker, which is a Hispanic speaker. he’s got a tough voice but he’s also got a Hispanic accent that he must maintain all the time so I find that a challenge. I’ve tried to get other game character roles but everyone thinks I can only do Duke. This sorts cuts both ways the fact that I’ve been Duke since 1995 means that the junior / high school kids that played Duke Nukem in the 90s are now game developers that the top guys want to hire. this could have had a record in San Diego or Los Angeles but know they insisted to find me to Seattle and recording there because there are fans.

What is next for Duke Nukem?

He is a great and viable character for the next motion picture superhero. He’d be great now that everything can be done CG there is no reason to find somebody who needs to look like him and just animate the whole thing. You could put titties in there, right?

How Can You Increase Your Stats in Battlefield 4?

battlefield 4 gameplay

The latest upgrade and expansion to the Battlefield world finds you with increasing capability to take your character, and your team, farther into the world. You not only have to fight your way in to release the VIPs, but you also have to work to get them out of the station as well. Some of the new weapons that are available have a hidden cost, use them when the time isn’t right and you can lose serious stat points through harm to yourself, and to the VIP hostages you are supposed to protect.

Gaining Weapons and Finding Dog Tags

There are a lot of cheats already built into the game so don’t think that you are going to be punching a lot of codes into a controller and watching your stats go up. Like most long play linear games, there are a lot of Easter Eggs hidden in the game that will give you some great advantages. You have to start looking for them immediately to find them all. One of them is even stashed in the tutorial. Here is a hint, as soon as you enter the building look at the bulletin board and you will see one of the sets of dog tags that will help you in the game.

Challenges in Every Area Bring Their Rewards

As you progress through every area of the mission, from the mountains of Russia to the ship in the South China Sea there are progressive defined challenges that will bring you more points and weapons to help you advance in the game as well. Make sure that you look at the log as you pass through and do each of the small side adventures. These adventures were designed as a way of padding out the game, they are how you can increase your stats, resources and inventory. You don’t have to complete all of them to do the main mission, but it will be far less than it could be if you don’t take the time to unlock all the secrets in the game.

Does it Play the Same on Every Platform?

One of the advantages to playing Battlefield 4 is its availability on almost every gaming platform possible. While those on Xbox One may have a bit of an adjustment period since their old third party controllers are no longer supported, for the rest of the gamers using different systems there won’t be a problem. One of the key expansions that have been listed for Battlefield 4 is a whole new adventure area that continues the basic storyline. Only this time, where the story will take you is going to be a lot more complex and difficult to solve. With the addition of all the side adventures to pump up your character, you are looking at a long and intense adventure before you even get down to the task of completing the main mission. It is well worth it and the latest Battlefield 4 upgrade has some of the best effects yet.