February 2011

Is the secret to Coca-Cola out?

Stephanie Gardiner

February 15, 2011

Coca-cola was invented in 1886.
Coca-Cola was invented in 1886. Photo: Andrew Quilty

With ingredients such as 20 drops of orange oil, 30 drops of lemon oil and 10 drops of nutmeg oil, it sounds more like a home remedy than a top-secret formula.

But an American radio program claims it has uncovered the exact recipe for Coca-Cola in the pages of a 1979 newspaper.

Britain’s Daily Mail reports the program This American Lifepublished a photograph of a handwritten recipe for Coca-Cola from a February edition of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The blend of oils – also including coriander, neroli and cinnamon oils – and alcohol is reported to be the formula for the so-called “Merchandise 7X”, which gives the famed soft drink its distinctive flavour.

The blog has also included a recipe published in a book in the 1990s, which is similar to the 1979 version, but calls for four times as much of each of the oils.

The soft drink was created in 1886 by pharmacist John Pemberton in Atlanta, Georgia, and the recipe has always been kept under wraps.

Legend has it that the exact details of the recipe are kept locked in a bank vault in Atlanta.

The recipe as published on

Fluid extract of coca 3 drams

Citric acid 3oz

Caffeine 1oz

Sugar 30 (quantity not known)

Water 2.5 gal

Lime juice 2 pints 1 qrt

Vanilla 1oz

Caramel 1.5oz or more to colour

Merchandise 7X flavour (use 2oz of flavour to 5 gals syrup):

Alcohol 8oz

Orange oil 20 drops

Lemon oil 30 drops

Nutmeg oil 10 drops

Coriander oil 5 drops

Neroli oil 10 drops

Cinnamon oil 10 drops

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha

1. Click on the link below (COFFEE MACHINE)

2. Put the coin in the vending machine

3. Choose your drink

4. Click on the cup when it’s ready

5. Click on ‘Open’ and enjoy!


Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha


That’s right: it’s a fake. And it takes “no responsibility” for misleading those which have been led to believe a story is real, according to its director of digital, Baratunde Thurston.

Speaking to this website, Thurston said The Onion – which bills itself as “America’s finest news source” and has been publishing its news online since 1996 – offered “no official disclaimers” its news wasn’t real. Since 2007 it’s been publishing audio and video clips.

“The Onion … puts the material out there and leaves it to the very intelligent, very discerning public to discern our news from what they might get from an ‘official’ news source,” Thurston said. “We sort of have had instances where people aren’t able to make that distinction and we take no responsibility for their inability to do so.”

Often mainstream news organisations had picked up on articles published on the site and run with them without doing any fact checking, Thurston said.

“It’s not something that we actually try to do,” he said in response to tricking mainstream news organisations. “I think some people have a misconception that we’re out to actively fool people. At the heart of what we try to do is to make a statement, sometimes lofty, other times quite silly – through comedic and satirical ways and using news as the main filter.

“So when we do our job most effectively some people get caught in the crossfire. They may not have heard of The Onion or know what we do, and so take what we do as legitimate news because we mock legitimate news so well.”

One recent example of a news organisation referencing The Onion was when it quoted Neil Armstrong as saying the moon landing was faked.

“Some newspapers in Bangladesh printed that story as breaking news,” Thurston said.

Another example was when a Chinese newspaper “plagiarised in full” a story about how the US Congress refused to return to legislative session unless a retractable sports dome was built over the US capital, he said.

“The publisher later issued a somewhat apology basically saying ‘Well there are some small, independent news sources in the United States that make their money and living by peddling lies to the American people’. And, in a fashion, that publisher was correct. But, more accurately, they did a terrible editing job.”

As for the perfect headline? Thurston said they were “hard to come by” but that the site had the luxury that many real news websites don’t have: starting with the headline and not the story. “I’ve written some successful headlines [but] I’ve had a lot more rejected that have ever been published,” he said.

Baratunde Thurston is a guest speaker at the Digital Directions 2011 conference, which will be held in Sydney on March 3.

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha

NBN costs Australian taxpayers

24 times South Korea at one tenth

the speed: report says @ $40billion

February 9, 2011 – 2:29PM
Speed, coverage and public-funding comparison (per covered household).Speed, coverage and public-funding comparison (per covered household). Photo: ECU

Australia’s national broadband network will cost taxpayers 24 times as much as South Korea’s but deliver services at just one-tenth the speed, new research claims.

The opposition claimed the research vindicated its position that the NBN was a waste of public funds, while the government countered that comparing Australia to South Korea was “like comparing apples to oranges”.

The research from the Economist Intelligence Unit published today shows Australia is spending an estimated 7.6 per cent of annual government budget revenues on its broadband network.

“In South Korea, by comparison, the government is spending less than 1 per cent of annual budget revenues to realise its broadband goals, achieving targets by encouraging the private sector to invest in the country’s broadband future,” the Economist Intelligence Unit said in a statement.

However, the EIU report does not mention NBN Co’sannouncement last year that its network will also be capable of the same speeds as South Korea’s network. Shortly before the federal election, chief executive Mike Quigley announced the fibre network would be built to carry speeds of 1 gigabit per second in a bid to differentiate the project from the opposition’s broadband policy.

The opposition seized on the report, with its communications spokesman Malcolm Turnbull saying that the Economist Intelligence Unit had “joined the long list of expert observers, both international and local, who are utterly dismayed by the reckless spending of the Gillard government on the NBN”.

“The study confirms, yet again, that this NBN project should be the subject of a rigorous cost benefit analysis by the Productivity Commission.”

Communications Minister Stephen Conroy’s spokeswoman said comparing Australia to Korea was “like comparing apples to oranges”.

“Investment in Australia’s road, rail, telecommunications and utility infrastructure faces vastly different factors than countries such as South Korea,” the spokeswoman said.

“We know that with Australia’s population density, there aren’t the incentives for the private sector to provide the universal high quality broadband infrastructure that all Australians need.”

Conroy’s spokeswoman also noted that Australia’s land mass was “over 7.6 million square kilometres compared with South Korea’s which is just over 100,000 square kilometres” and that Australia had a population density of “2.7 people per sq km compared with 487 people per sq km for South Korea”.

The report also claimed that while Australia’s network scored highly for setting an original target speed of 100Mbps, Sweden, Finland, Estonia and France planned to achieve similar targets with much lower public-sector funding.

The study reviewed more than 40 national government plans for broadband development. Australia scored 3.4 out of five on the index. It punished Australia for the “huge cost to the public sector of its broadband scheme”.

Other factors that worked against Australia were “limited private-sector involvement, heavy central-government intervention and the exclusion of state and municipal authorities from its plan”, the Economist Intelligence Unit said.

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha