Panthers just happen to be my favorite animal, so I thought it would be appropriate for me to provide more information than just Webster 1912's description. Most of the information I could find on panthers was only about Florida Panthers (not the hockey variety though).

Most of the information here is a summary I made from information which is freely available from from the Florida Panther Society at http://www.atlantic.net/~oldfla/panther/panther.html

Panthers are related to leopards and are found in South Florida. Their paws are smaller & legs slightly longer than its cousins. Panthers have shorter hair, a crooked tail, and a whorl of hair in the middle of its back. Color of the coat varies from a rusty buff to fawn gray, while the muzzle, chest, and underbelly is white; tail tip, back of ears, and sides of nose are dark brown or blackish.

They can run up to 35 mph but only for a few hundred yards, their preferred method of hunting is to creep up as close to their prey as possible and launch a short spring attack. When humans approach an area they will either be still, disappear, or attempt to circle behind. Panthers can live up to between 12-15 years in the wild. A male can measure 7-8 feet from the nose to tail tip and weight 100-160 lbs. Females are about 6 feet in length and weight between 60-100 lbs.

Panthers are most active at dusk and dawn, they can travel 15-20 miles a day, often moving in a zig-zag pattern, though they tend to rest during the daytime, travel & hunt during the cooler hours of the night. Panthers can swim and will cross wide bodies of water. They have a keen sense of smell and a field of vision of 130 degrees, they have excellent depth perception but lack the panoramic view that deer have.

Panthers are primarily solitary animals, they do not mate for life or live in prides but they do have a social structure. Each animal has a home range or territory which it maintains and hunts within. These ranges will tend to overlap with potential mates. Males will not tolerate other males and will fight which can be fatal. A male's home range is more extensive covering of 250 sq. miles, increasing mating potential. But females are more tolerant of each other and have a range of 70 - 200 sq. miles.

Panthers live in upper dry land & wetland areas. Dry - hardwood hammock, pine flatwoods, saw palmetto & cabbage palm thickets. Wet - cypress forest, thicket swamps & freshwater marsh. Palmetto & drier scrub areas are often used for denning and day beds.

Panthers eat white-tail deer, feral hogs, raccoons, armadillos, small alligators, other small rodents and fowl. Deer or hog are the preferred prey and may be taken every 7 to 10 days, the diet then being supplemented with smaller prey.

Panthers are quickly becoming extinct and are on the endangered species list. Their historic range included eastern Texas or western Louisiana and the lower Mississippi River valley east through the Southeastern States in general (Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and parts of Tennessee and South Carolina). Even though numerous sighting reports continue to surface annually throughout its historic range, it is unlikely that viable populations of the Florida panther presently occur outside Florida.

compiled overview of the 35ton Panther 'Mech, from various BattleTech novels and game sourcebooks:



Originally designed in 2739 as a fire support vehicle for reconnaissance units, the prototype Panther was first built for the Star League during the closing years of the Cameron dynasty. The Panther has been the Draconis Combine's pre-eminent light 'Mech throughout the Succession Wars. The Combine is the only Successor State that today uses the Panther in any significant numbers. This is because they control the only working Panther factory, located on the temperate world of Alshain.

The Panther was produced on the planets of Jarett and New Oslo, located inside the Free Rasalhague Republic. The Panther had an important part in the development of the FRR's KungsArmé, especially the Husar regiments. But, sadly, both planets have fallen to the Clans. The New Oslo plant was disassembled and the Jarett plant gutted before the Clans took either planet; the production of Panthers has dropped dramatically.

Though there have been many attempts to knock out the factory at Alshain, the fact that it is housed in the bowels of a mountain makes it a tough target. The factory is churning out Panthers for Kurita as quickly as possible, slowed down only by the delay in getting target computers delivered from clear across the Combine.

The Mech's poor performance at the Battle of St. John in 2759 pointed out both a flaw and a strength in the design. The flaw was that the large laser, mounted on the 'Mech's right arm, lacked effective range and power. The strength was the 'Mech's basic hardiness. To improve this battle worthy machine's firepower, Star League engineers replaced the large laser with a PPC.

Its PPC is unusual for a 'Mech of its size. An extraordinary weapon, the Lord's Light PPC combines the fire-power of a standard PPC with the lightness and flexibility of an arm-carried weapon. For close-in work, the Panther carries four SRM tubes with enough ammunition for twenty-five shots. The reliable Telos system is placed in the 'Mech's chest area, which ensures it good protection.

Prior to the Clan invasion, Alshain Weapons had plans in the works to build another factory on Krenice. The Clans' arrival forced Alshain Weapons to step up those plans. Panthers incorporating recovered technology are expected to begin marching off the line at Krenice sometime within the next year.

The availability of Star League technology has given Gorton, Kingsley and Thorpe Enterprises the chance to make a good thing better at its rebuilt factory on Satalice. Though the Panther was already well armed and armored, GK&T Ent. is planning to improve both of the 'Mech's weapon systems and to beef up its defenses. The use of endo steel in the new Panther's internal structure saves enough weight to allow for other changes.

The excellent Lord's Light PPC is replaced in the new Panther by the second-generation, extended-range Lord's Light 2. Field trials have shown no problems with the new system. The reliable Cat's Eyes 5 targeting system has been merged with the Artemis IV fire-control system, greatly improving the accuracy of the Telos-4 SRM launcher. Though the Panther is well armored for a light 'Mech, an occasional lucky shot has detonated missile reloads in the past, making the revamped Panther a perfect candidate for Cellular Ammunition Storage Equipment. Panthers with such equipment are just beginning to reach the most prestigious units.



Pilots discovered early in the Panther's career that it was well-suited to the dirty tactics of city fighting. The nimble 'Mech easily moves through the restricted spaces of a city, while its PPC gives it the chance of disabling all but the heaviest 'Mechs with a few aimed shots. From rooftop ambushes to muggings on dark streets, the Panther has gained quite a reputation. For its urban brawling prowess. Lyran Commonwealth MechWarriors have nicknamed it "the Alley Cat". Even in a city, however, the Panther cannot stand up to a heavy 'Mech such as the Warhammer or Zeus in a head-on engagement. Finding himself in that situation, the Panther pilot must rely on good shooting and the 'Mech's superior mobility to leave the field in one piece.

Kurita first used Panthers in a large-scale offensive action on the planet Quentin during the First Succession War, and the action remains a model for how the Combine employs the 'Mech. Once the Second Legion of Vega was reorganized with Panthers as the mainstay of its light units, it was ordered to assault the agricultural planet Quentin, owned by Duke Davion. Catching Davion's 42nd Avalon Hussars off guard, the Second Legion of Vega mauled them severely. Though the Hussars' 'Mechs were generally heavier and had more firepower, they could not react fast enough to the fleet-footed Panthers firing heavy hits with their PPCS. The Hussars retreated, giving up the only major city and spaceport on Quentin.

The victory on Quentin paled in significance, however, when Minoru Kurita was assassinated on Kentares IV at about the same time. To support his rage against the people of Kentares, Jinjiro Kurita took troops and supplies away from the Second Legion of Vega and sent the unit as reinforcements to the Kentares front. In the meantime, the 42nd Avalon Hussars had been reinforced by units of the Fourth Deneb Light Cavalry.

Suddenly on the defensive, the Panthers of Kurita's Second Legion bore the brunt of the Hussars' counterattack. From prepared positions in and around the city, the Panthers held off an onslaught by Davion Warhammers and Marauders. This delaying action, led by Captain Ted "Red Beard" Henry, created enormous confusion in the Davion advance. His troops' action allowed the safe withdrawal of the Second Legion when it became apparent that there was no hope of reinforcements.



Note: Information used here was the domain of FASA before they split the rights between Wizkids LLC and Microsoft (table-top gaming and video games respectively). Copyright of the fluff text is in limbo, but names of persons, places, & things are without any doubt the property of Wizkids LLC. Use of any terms here related to the BattleTech trademark are not meant as a challenge to Wizkids LLC's rights.

Apple Computer's code name for version 10.3 of Mac OS X, its next generation operating system which is due late 2003 and was announced on the World Wide Developers Conference at the end of June, 2003.

Panther features a bunch of improvements over Mac OS X 10.2 (code name 'Jaguar'), most notably the following:

Finder
The all-new Finder puts you at the center of your Mac.
The new and improved finder will offer a sidebar for your favorite folders, local or networked. Along with an iTunes or Mail like search feature. Overall speed is also improved

Exposé
Exposé quickly tiles open windows and reveals files on your desktop.
Exposé offers a way to display all your open windows at once. Using Quartz Panther will rearrange all your open widows and allow you to click on the one you want. Then all widows return to their original size and the newly selected window remains up front and active. Exposé will work the same way for arranging windows in a specific application.

iChat AV
iChat AV offers videoconferencing for the rest of us.
With a broadband internet connection, iSight (or a DV camera), and iChat AV anyone can set up video conferencing as easily as text messaging. With a 56k internet connection audio feeds can be used. What does this mean? No more long distance calls. Simply use iChat AV to talk to anyone, anywhere.

Fast User Switching
Change users without logging out of your applications.
On most modern operating systems users can switch between accounts without logging out, without shutting down programs. Panther will incorporate this time saving feature with the most advanced operating system around. Along with this new User Switching mode Apple has made a new account manager.

Mail
New time-saving features to make contacting folks easier.
The same Mail you know and love, but now with more. Mail will incorporate the ability to track email threads, even if the subject line changes. It will also be more integrated with Address Book, allowing coping names and email addresses between the two.

FileVault
FileVault secures your home folder with AES-128 encryption.
Advanced Encryption Standard with 128-bit keys (AES-128) secures your personal files without any slowdown. For complete security, FileVault also includes a permanent/destructive file deletion.

Preview
Scroll through and search PDFs faster than before.
With the increasing number of web sites using PDF for information or instruction booklets a good PDF Viewer is needed. Preview for Panther with have the ability to search PDF files for key words, as well as copy sections of text. The new Preview will also be able to view faxes from the newly incorporated fax support.

Font Book
Find, organize and manage all the fonts on your Mac.
Font Book will enable the user to turn fonts on and off, select font categories, or simply install new fonts. When you need to find a web compatible font Font Book can disable all other fonts. Font Book can be used to find special characters as well.

Faxing
Send and receive faxes on your desktop.
Adding fax capabilities to your desktop through your already existing modem. Any program that can print will automatically have the ability to fax. Fax numbers can be stored in Address Book, and only entries with fax numbers will be listed when faxing.

iDisk
Work on remote files from a copy of your iDisk on your desktop.
iDisk can now be set to synchronies with a folder on your computer. That means you simply edit what you want when you want in realtime, and let the OS upload it to your .Mac account when you are connected to the internet. No wasted time.

Xcode
The fastest way to develop Mac OS X applications.
Xcode reduces compiling time by compiling code as you type. It also will feature fix and continue. That means fixing your code while you debug an application without needing to recompile to continue debugging. For large projects Xcode also offers distributed build. Harnessing the power of other computers to compile huge projects.


http://www.apple.com/macosx/panther/

I’d like to update the excellent writeup, Panther , of February 2001 by jafuser. At that time the Florida Panther had been on the federal endangered list since 1967, on the Florida endangered list since 1973, and the known population in South Florida was between 30 to 50 adults.

Today, according to the National Park Service, there are between 80 and 100 of these big tawny cats in the same area. That is both good and bad news.

Panthers, also called “catamounts” or “painters”, were once common throughout the southeastern United States. Today they are reduced to small numbers such as the Florida panthers found mainly in a national wildlife refuge in Collier County, Florida, south of Lake Okeechobee, a remote area of cypress swamps and hardwood hammocks. There have also been numerous sightings in recent years in adjacent counties in the southern tip of the Florida peninsula. Panthers are such elusive animals that they can be established within a mile of a suburban area without ever being sighted. Often only spoor and prey carcasses are evidence of their existence.

Panthers like the same habitat as the whitetail deer, their preferred prey. Unfortunately, more and more of Florida wetlands are being drained, more and more of the dry scrub and flatwoods are being cleared for human habitation.

The immediate problem today for the increased panther population is that there is basically no space for romance. Panthers are solitary; they do not live in prides as do lions. A male panther has a territory of roughly 250 square miles. This will normally overlap the territory of several breeding females, who have smaller territories approximately half the size of the males. Females are tolerant of each other and can co-exist, but the males are fiercely territorial.

Males mature at about three years of age, but they will not attempt to breed until they have established a territory. The young panthers who were born in and around the Everglades National Park are now roaming hundreds of miles in search of unattached females. In the past panthers have been persecuted out of fear and misunderstanding, but it must also be noted that there are documented records of panthers injuring and killing humans.

Panthers have been protected from legal hunting in Florida since 1958 and it is a federal crime to kill one. Exceptions can be made if an animal is destroyed to protect humans. The Miccosukee Indians, whose Florida reservation is east of the panther preserve, have categorically advised state and federal wildlife agencies that any panthers entering tribal property will be killed. The tribe’s chairman wrote, “We will not allow these animals to harm anyone, especially children.”

Wildlife management officials are well aware of the problems between humans and panthers. Their agencies prefer to keep the panther-human interactions to a minimum. In the American West there have been highly publicized attacks on humans – hikers killed on mountain trails, children attacked in daylight in less remote settings.

At the moment, this is not a problem with the Florida Panther. A spokesman for the Florida Wildlife Federation said, however, that if the panthers make a comeback and are no longer endangered, “they’re going to need to be managed. By managed that may mean lethal control in some cases.”

The problem, then, for Florida's panthers, is that they need remote areas where they can spread out. Close quarters are not only a territorial problem but are also a health problem. While habitat loss and hunting were the principal reasons for their decline in the past, today’s animals are much more likely to become extinct because of genetic defects resulting from inbreeding among the remaining population.

Two solutions have been presented. The first is to open areas via wildlife corridors and stock these areas with breeding females from other parts of the country. The second solution is to breed in captivity for release in the wild. Both cases, however, demand vast acreage of undeveloped land and a tolerance of panthers on the part of humans.

www.news-journalonline.com
www.fpl.con/environment/endangered
www.dos.state.fl.us/symbols/animal
www.startribune.com

The Panther is the name of the latest design of RISC based desktop computer using the Iyonix motherboard and by default running RISC OS 5.

Background

The Panther PC is the latest (May 2004) in the revolutionary line of RISC computers with their origins in the Acorn series of desktop PCs . Now largely forgotten outside the geek world the RISC computer was once seen as the future of computer technology. RISC allows for a comparatively slow processor to effectively perform as a much faster one. (My geek companions refused to believe my old 233Mhz StrongARM was anything less than a 700Mhz until I removed the casing). A key advantage of this approach is the low power consumption and running temperature of the processor, removing the annoying fan roar which plagues x86 based PCs and reducing wear and tear on the components.

RISC computers such as the Acorn Archimedes and Risc PC experienced huge popularity within the UK educational establishment and industry due largely to the reliability both of the hardware and the ROM-based OS, keeping power and maintenance costs to a minimum. This popularity led to the development of a host of educational and DTP applications being produced and meant that for a generation of UK users RISC OS was their first introduction to the world of Desktop Computing. Unfortunately for RISC computers the popularity of Windows within the business world led to the eventual adoption of Windows and x86 based architecture just about everywhere.

Sadly for fans of the now standard Pentium style of processor the current technique of shrinking the processor and upping the power has its limitations. The current generation of chips are approaching the absolute limit of size reduction. Trying to move the components any closer would allow quantum tunnelling to take place, electrons would simply jump through the insulation from one location in a chip to another. This would be bad. This effect can be countered by upping the power, but this would risk burn out of the tiny transistors that make up the chip. A new approach is required in order to meet the increasing demand for more speed.

Intel found such an alternative in the XScale processor. Based in essence on the StrongARM chip the XScale provides a 600Mhz RISC processor which is capable of providing lightening fast operations at only four degrees above room temperature. The production of the XScale allowed Castle Technology, owners of the rights to RISC OS to develop the Panther, taking full advantage of the features of the XScale to create a truly modern RISC based PC.

Panther Details

First Impressions- The Casing

The casing of the Panther is in essence a 20cm wide by 44cm tall 51cm deep black tower PC… but with some interesting features. The frontage is a streamlined metallic mirror door fitted with a small digital temperature gauge revealing the internal temperature. The front possesses power-on and reset control and easy access USB ports and audio. Also on the front is the cool panther-head logo. With the door swung open the drive ports are revealed. There is room for up to 11 drives, though the default configuration comes with floppy and 52xCD/rw.

Under the Hood- The Actual Stats

If you operate the easy access side panel (disturbingly described as Thumb-Screw access.) the interior gubbins are revealed to the prying eye. As there are very dramatic ways of describing the wonders of the printed circuit board and the solid state chip I shall present the following list for your reading pleasure

Stats sourced from Castle Tech press release available from http://www.iconbar.com

Pan"ther (?), n. [OE. pantere, F. panthere, L. panthera, Gr. , prob. fr. Skr. pundrika a tiger.]

1. Zool.

A large dark-colored variety of the leopard, by some zoologists considered a distinct species. It is marked with large ringlike spots, the centers of which are darker than the color of the body.

2. Zool.

In America, the name is applied to the puma, or cougar, and sometimes to the jaguar.

<-- Illustr. of Panther (Felis leopardus, or pardus) -->

Panther cat Zool., the ocelot. -- Panther cowry Zool., a spotted East Indian cowry (Cypraea pantherina); -- so called from its color.

 

© Webster 1913.

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