9. The Universe, in Brief

Oct-26-2012 | Comments Off

Bird’s Eye: Douglas Adams said it best, as usual, Space is big. You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mind- bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist’s, but that’s just peanuts to space.” A trio of pieces try to convey some of the awesome (in its original meaning) nature of our world.

* Putting the Size of the Observable Universe in Perspective Twisted Sifter

* Temporal Distortion Vimeo (Thanks, Oriah)

Featuring an original score by Bear McCreary (Battlestar Galactica, The Walking Dead, Eureka, etc) Thanks to Bear for taking the time to do this!

* Why Is The Sky Dark At Night?   Bad Astronomy  Discover Magazine

One thing educators like to say is that there are no stupid questions. I disagree, mildly: unasked questions might fit that category. Still and all, even basic questions are worth asking, and sometimes can lead to profound insight.

For example, one of my favourite questions is also one of the simplest: “Why is the sky dark at night?” The wonderful folks at Minute Physics took this query on, and show you why this question is so very important



11. Eyecandy: Storms

Jul-13-2012 | Comments (1)

Bird’s Eye: As Global Weirding continues we’ll probably get more and more pictures like these, which is the silver lining to the storm cloud. The solar storms in part three cause the Northern Lights in part four, should you be puzzling how they sneaked in.

* Epic Storms National Geographic Magazine

* Lovely Sky Monsters   In Focus – The Atlantic

* Solar Storms  National Geographic Magazine

* Lights Over Lapland The Presurfer

Photographer Chad Blakley spent thousands of hours over the course of three winters capturing stunning views of the northern lights from Abisko National Park in the Swedish province of Lapland.



6. Followups

Jun-15-2012 | Comments Off

Bird’s Eye: Two pieces looking at the fallout of 00bama’s military strategy abroad: it seems that if you kill civilians arbitrarily, their surviving kin will hold a grudge. This may be news to the Pentagon, or the White House. And two lighter followups on out of this world: shots from an orbiting spacecraft, and a look down a space-time wormhole.

* How Drones Help Al Qaeda New York Times

“DEAR OBAMA, when a U.S. drone missile kills a child in Yemen, the father will go to war with you, guaranteed. Nothing to do with Al Qaeda,” a Yemeni lawyer warned on Twitter last month. President Obama should keep this message in mind before ordering more drone strikes like Wednesday’s, which local officials say killed 27 people, or the May 15 strike that killed at least eight Yemeni civilians.

Drone strikes are causing more and more Yemenis to hate America and join radical militants; they are not driven by ideology but rather by a sense of revenge and despair. Robert Grenier, the former head of the C.I.A.’s counterterrorism center, has warned that the American drone program in Yemen risks turning the country into a safe haven for Al Qaeda like the tribal areas of Pakistan — “the Arabian equivalent of Waziristan.

* Why They Hate Obama Juan Cole Informed Comment

The Pew Charitable Trust Global Attitudes Survey finds that most publics abroad have experienced substantial disappointment in Barack Obama. Indeed, Middle Eastern Muslims are hoping Obama will be defeated next November. But, the rest of the world isn’t experiencing buyers’ remorse about Obama for the same reasons as the American public. Not even.

Global disappointment with Obama focuses on three areas, according to the poll, with the Middle East respondents more disappointed than the Europeans.

They had expected him to seek the cooperation of others rather than launching unilateral policies.

They had expected him to do something about the declining situation of the Palestinians in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and he did not.

They had expected him to address the problem of climate change, and from their point of view, he did not.

Aside from not meeting their expectations, he also disappointed them with a new policy, that of throwing drones down on other countries without so much as a by-your-leave.

That these genuinely important issues are the basis of global disappointment with Obama shows how divorced from reality the great American Bubble Island has become, where the bubble-headed spew complete nonsense on the airwaves on certain channels 24/7.

* Lost Wormhole photo

* Astronaut Don Pettit’s Photos of Earth from the International Space Station  Slate Magazine

The images, which look straight out of 2001: A Space Odyssey, as has been noted around the web, were taken 240 miles up in space by combining multiple 30-second exposure photos, and then stacking them together with imaging software. The resulting “star trail” images, as he calls them, essentially show the paths made by stars and earth lights over 10 to 15 minutes.



11. Eyecandy: Life in these Times

Apr-27-2012 | Comments Off

Bird’s Eye: But for most of us, it’s not obscure festivals in remote landscapes inhabited by isolated cultures. It’s just life, and it’s still photogenic.

* Daily life: April 2012 – The Big Picture

* Images of Earth From Above – In Focus

* Visions of Earth  National Geographic Magazine

* A Collection of Kisses – In Focus

… A woman kisses a fish after catching it during an ice fishing competition at the Hwacheon Sancheoneo Ice Festival in South Korea….



Older Posts »




Categories


Blog Roll

Al Jazeera
altmuslim
Bernard Avishai
boingboing
Broadsides: Antonia Zerbisias
China Matters
Haaretz
Informed Comment
Lawrence of Cyberia
Mondoweiss
Rabble.ca: Canadian leftish voices
Reddit
Stephen Walt Foreign Policiy
The Big Picture
The Guardian
Tikkun Daily Blog
Tikun Olam

Tags

  • 2010
  • 4chan
  • 9/11
  • 99%
  • acrobats. world cup
  • ADD
  • ADHD
  • Advertisements
  • advertising
  • advice
  • Afghanistan
  • Africa
  • ageing
  • Al Jazeera
  • Amy Chua
  • anarchism
  • animals
  • animation
  • Anonymous
  • antibiotics
  • apocalypse
  • apple
  • April Fool
  • archeology
  • Archie
  • architecture
  • Assange
  • assassins creed
  • astro-turfing
  • Aswan
  • Atwood
  • Australia
  • Australia Flood
  • Balance
  • balloons
  • Banksy
  • Bar Mitzvah
  • BDS
  • Beatles
  • birds
  • black bloc
  • Bodies
  • books
  • BP
  • BP Oil
  • brains
  • Brazil
  • Breivik
  • British election
  • Burning Man
  • busyness
  • Calgary
  • Canada
  • Canadian Election
  • cancer
  • Cancun
  • capitalism
  • Carnival
  • censorship
  • Census
  • Chernobyl
  • children
  • china
  • Chinese Parents
  • Christmas
  • circus
  • climate change
  • coal
  • coffee
  • color
  • colour
  • community
  • conspiracies
  • copyright
  • Cory Doctorow
  • Crazy
  • Creativity
  • crime
  • Crows
  • Dalai Lama
  • danger
  • Data
  • Decisions
  • Denial
  • Depression
  • Dogs
  • Doonesbury
  • drones
  • Drugs
  • earthquake
  • economics
  • Education
  • Egypt
  • energy
  • english defence league
  • EU
  • Expo 2010
  • facebook
  • family
  • fashion
  • Feminism
  • festivals
  • film
  • First Nations
  • fish
  • Flotilla
  • Flowers
  • fonts
  • fracking
  • France
  • frugality
  • ftw
  • fukushima
  • G20
  • G8
  • Gaudi
  • Gay
  • gay marriage
  • Gay Pride Day
  • Gaza
  • Gaza flotilla
  • Gene Sharp
  • gene-splicing
  • gifs
  • Goldstone
  • Good News
  • Google
  • Google Art
  • graffiti
  • grafitti
  • ground zero mosque
  • Halloween
  • Harper
  • Healing
  • Hell
  • homeopathy
  • Horses
  • Huck Finn
  • Humpback Whales
  • ice cream
  • iceland satellite
  • Immigrants
  • immigration
  • incest
  • Indonesia
  • inside job
  • instant karma
  • Iran
  • Iroquois
  • Isaiah Mustafa
  • Islamophobia
  • Israel
  • J-Street
  • Jack Layton
  • Japan
  • Jon Stewart
  • Jstreet
  • Kashmir
  • Keynes
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • language
  • Lerner
  • Lesbian
  • Libya
  • Lions
  • logic
  • London Riots
  • Loughner
  • Lunar Eclipse
  • M.C. Escher
  • madness
  • maps
  • Marxism
  • Mary Oliver
  • McChrystal
  • medicine
  • migration
  • money
  • Monsanto
  • Mormons
  • mountain top removal
  • Music
  • Muslim Brotherhood
  • mutants
  • NDP
  • niqab
  • NiqaBitch
  • Noam Chomsky
  • Norway
  • Obama
  • ocean
  • Oil
  • oil sands
  • Oil spill
  • Old Spice
  • Olympics
  • one state
  • optical illusions
  • ows
  • pain
  • Pakistan
  • Pakistani Floods
  • Palestine
  • parallel state
  • Pelicans
  • penguins
  • Philanthropy
  • photography
  • photos
  • pirates
  • placebo
  • Poetry
  • police
  • pornography
  • prisons
  • Prom
  • Proposition 8
  • protest
  • Psychiatry
  • psychosis
  • Pussy Riot
  • quantum physics
  • Quebec students
  • Quiz
  • Quizzes
  • racism
  • rainbows
  • rap
  • Reddit
  • Roma
  • Romney
  • Rowling
  • Rush
  • Russia
  • Russian Fires
  • Sarah Palin
  • satire
  • Scanners
  • schools
  • SCOTUS
  • sculpture
  • Security
  • Sistine Chapel
  • Snow
  • Socialism
  • sound
  • south park
  • sport hockey Python
  • Sports
  • Statistics
  • stats
  • Steve Jobs
  • strikes
  • stupid
  • subway
  • summer
  • surfing
  • surveillance
  • Syria
  • tar sands
  • tattoos
  • Tea Party
  • Teachers
  • tectonic plates
  • TED talks
  • terrorism
  • Thailand
  • The Kinks
  • Tiger Mom
  • Tokyo
  • Toronto
  • Torture
  • trains
  • travel
  • Trees
  • TSA scanners
  • Tsunami
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • TV
  • ubb
  • UK
  • UK riots
  • unicorns
  • Unions
  • United Nations
  • vaccine
  • Valentine's Day
  • video games
  • volcano
  • Wall Street Protest
  • water
  • weapons
  • weather
  • wikileaks
  • wikipedia
  • winter
  • Winter Solstice
  • Winter Sports
  • Wisconsin
  • words
  • World Cup
  • yoga
  • youth