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Brain Linked To Internet

Researchers Have Linked a Human Brain to the Internet for the First Time Ever

Researchers from Wits University have linked a brain directly to the internet. Data gathered from this project could help fuel the next steps in machine learning and brain-computer interfaces.

ummm… yeah, that just happened.

#blink

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Science

Hello Aliens, Anybody Out There?

Scientists set to send messages to aliens…

oh sure, what could possibly go wrong…

yeah, i went with the Battleship movie poster because it’s the first movie that popped in my head when thinking about sending a strong signal out into space, and then having some aliens show up years later.

#ShakesHead  #DeepSigh

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Online/Web Science

SpaceX’s New Spacesuit

Elon Musk shares first full-body photo of SpaceX’s spacesuit

Elon Musk has shared a photo of the SpaceX spacesuit the company has designed in-house. This is the second photo shared by Musk of the new spacesuit design created by the company, and the first to feature the suit’s full-body look.

The first photo focused on the head and shoulders of the outfit, depicting the full tinted face mask of the helmet, and the angular shoulders and black and white design. This one puts the suit into context next to the Crew Dragon capsule, which is the vehicle staff wearing the suit will use to make the trip on SpaceX’s first crewed launches.

This full-length shot of the suit reveals the glove and boot design for the first time, along with the pants, which feature flex zones in the knee area for mobility when bending. It also looks like there are similar padded areas in the back in black to help provide comfort while seated in the capsule.

The boots looks fairly lightweight, probably also optimized for mobility. These suits aren’t designed for extra-vehicular activity (EVA) after all – they’re created to protect the astronauts while they’re in the capsule, and when moving over to other vehicles (like the ISS) under pressurized conditions, rather than being exposed to vacuum.

have to say, that’s one sexy looking spacesuit!

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News Science

Russia Blasts Dead People Into Space

Russia to blast frozen dead people and pets into space…

Russia is set to blast frozen dead people into space after having them cryogenically preserved. Firm KrioRus said frozen bodies, DNA samples and even the bodies of pets could be blasted into the atmosphere.

The multi-million pound firm already has 54 people and 21 animals from all across the world within their labs – and a further 200 signed-up for the service.

The aim is to preserve dead bodies immediately after someone passes, before launching them into the atmosphere – where it would then cost upwards of £240,000 to keep them there.

great, like there’s not enough space junk already up there.

#RollsEyes

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News Science

Total Eclipse Today!

The Solar Eclipse: What to Expect

The moon will begin to get in the sun’s way over the Pacific Ocean on Monday morning. This will create a zone that scientists call totality — the line where the moon completely blocks the sun, plunging the sea and then a strip of land across the continental United States into a darkness that people and other living things can mistake for premature evening.

Because of planetary geometry, the total eclipse can last less than one minute in some places, and as long as two minutes and 41 seconds in others. The eclipse’s longest point of duration is near a small town called Makanda, Ill., population 600.

Around 1:15 p.m. Eastern time, the total solar eclipse will first reach Oregon’s coast. Then it will race for the next 90 or so minutes over 13 more states: Idaho, Montana (barely), Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa (hardly), Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and finally South Carolina.

At about 2:49 p.m. Eastern time in South Carolina, some lucky souls in the Palmetto State’s marshes could be the last on American soil to experience the total eclipse. Just after 4 p.m. Eastern, the partial eclipse will end and all of America will again be under the full August sun.

If you don’t live in one of these states, don’t despair: Every American state will experience a partial solar eclipse (although it won’t darken the sky like a total eclipse). In Honolulu, the sun will be about 20 percent covered. In Brownsville, Texas, you’ll see something like a half sun. Here in New York when the maximum eclipse occurs around 2:44 p.m. Eastern, the sun will be just over 70 percent obscured (and here are tips for taking in New York City’s partial eclipse).

oh man, it sure feels like everybody is loosing their shit over this eclipse… but to be honest, i think it’s pretty cool and awesome to see… talked to a friend over the weekend, and he’s driving over 2 hours away just to get a better view of it — and an extra 20 seconds or something like that… dunno, thought that was awesome.

gotta luv it ;)

so yeah, enjoy the solar eclipse today!

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Science

US Preps Mysterious X-37B

US Air Force Prepping Mysterious X-37B Space Plane for September Launch

The United States Air Force’s X-37B program is readying its next robotic mini-shuttle for launch, this time atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

The liftoff is scheduled to take place in early September, according to media reports.

Capt. Annmarie Annicelli, a U.S. Air Force spokeswoman, told Inside Outer Space: “At this time, I do not have the launch date to release.”

[ The Mysterious X-37B Space Plane: 6 Surprising Facts ]

feels like this “mysterious” space vehicle has been orbiting our beautifoo blue speck of dust for years now… curiosity and the imagination is a bitch, so i sure would like to know exactly what it’s been doing up there.

#hmmmmmm

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Online/Web Science

Skyscraper Hanging From Space

Skyscraper Hanging From An Asteroid In Space

what an interesting concept… i think that eventually we’ll see some kind of “space elevator” that climbs from the ground all the way up into low orbit space, but not too sure about how feasible or plausible this one is… definitely feels a bit sci-fi to me, but hey — so many things were scifi at one point, right?

either way, cool idea.

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Online/Web Science

Solar Eclipse, Coming Soon

A solar eclipse is coming to America. Here’s what you’ll see where you live…

On Monday August 21, a solar eclipse will cut across the entire United States. And wherever you are, you will be able to see it. Even though the “totality” — the area where the sun is completely blocked out by the moon — is only 70 miles wide, the whole country (even Alaska and Hawaii) will experience a partial eclipse. […]

The eclipse animation relies on data provided by The United States Naval Observatory and uses entering and exiting vertex angles along with the maximum obscuration percentage to calculate the trajectory of the moon across the sun. Maximum obscuration percentages in the animation are depicted using the nearest whole percent. The map obscuration data was provided by NASA.

i’m gonna have to try to remember this, being that it’s basically a month away… but it’ll be pretty damn cool to step outside and checkout a solar eclipse, especially in the middle of the afternoon here.

#MentalReminder

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Online/Web Science

Modern Hollow Earth Theory

A Journey to the Center of Modern Hollow Earth Theory

“The flat-Earthers are obviously wrong—the world is a sphere, and it’s hollow.”

Conspiracy theorists get a bad rap these days, and rightfully so. But it wasn’t always the case.

I remember it wasn’t all that long ago, back when I was working night shifts at an oil patch, we would kill time by turning on Coast to Coast AM with George Noory. If you haven’t heard this show, it can turn even the blandest talk radio into a fantasy wonderland—it was almost innocent in a way that has been lost to maniacs on YouTube ranting about racist conspiracies and how putting things into the water can turn frogs gay.

One night, a little over half a decade ago, while dicking around with my fellow co-workers, I remember hearing something far-fetched even for Coast to Coast—a hollow Earth theorist. The man, whose name I can’t remember, spoke of another world that exists within our own. Down there was another sun, beautiful valleys, a lost tribe of Israel or two, and dinosaurs.

Dinosaurs!

that’s so weird… was literally just outside talking with this guy, who was going on and on about some crazy ass conspiracy theories — though he certainly didn’t consider them to be “conspiracies” at all… but holy shitballs, he was trying to convince explain to me how we’re all actually living under some kind of “dome”, and that none of the maps of the earth are real… that we’re all being manipulated by “them”… that the earth might indeed be flat… and that we never landed on the moon.

oh and believe me, there was more.

g’damn.

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Science

Watch SpaceX Launch

Watch SpaceX launch its first reused Dragon capsule to resupply the ISS

SpaceX is going to attempt to re-use one of its Dragon capsules for the first time in an active mission to resupply the International Space Station. The Dragon spacecraft was used first back in September 2014 to resupply the ISS during CRS-4, and will carry nearly 6,000 pounds of supplies and research materials to support experiments during Thursday’s CRS-11 launch, the window for which opens at 5:55 PM EDT (2:55 PDT).

This is an instant launch window, so if conditions aren’t favorable or the launch is aborted for any other reason, a backup attempt will take place on Saturday, June 3 at 5:07 PM EDT. The launch is happening at LC-39A, the facility at Kennedy Space Center that SpaceX leased from NASA and reconfigured for Falcon 9 and future Falcon Heavy launches.

for whatever reason, watching these live SpaceX launches never really gets old for me… it sure has taken a lot longer than i thought it would, but it’s still one step closer to not being reliant on the russians to get our guys & gals up to the space staton, etc.

NASA Photography Archive Finally Available

#thumbsup

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Online/Web Science

The Birthplace of Mankind is… Europe?

Europe was the birthplace of mankind, not Africa, scientists find…

The history of human evolution has been rewritten after scientists discovered that Europe was the birthplace of mankind, not Africa.

Currently, most experts believe that our human lineage split from apes around seven million years ago in central Africa, where hominids remained for the next five million years before venturing further afield.

But two fossils of an ape-like creature which had human-like teeth have been found in Bulgaria and Greece, dating to 7.2 million years ago.

The discovery of the creature, named Graecopithecus freybergi, and nicknameded ‘El Graeco’ by scientists, proves our ancestors were already starting to evolve in Europe 200,000 years before the earliest African hominid.

whoa… what the shit?!

i’ve always heard that the cradle of mankind was in africa, and that we slowly started to migrate out from there eons ago… but now they’re saying that the birthplace of modern day humans is in europe?

huh.

i’ll be damned.

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Science

Tabby’s Acting Weird Again

The ‘alien megastructure’ star is acting weird, again, and it’s exactly what astronomers have been waiting for

Tabby’s Star — officially known as KIC 8462852 — is acting weird, again. Recent reports indicate it has started to dim in brightness. That’s what Tabby’s star does — it dims.

Astronomers were ready for the event — they have pointed telescopes from around the world at the star and are currently collecting as many different wavelengths of light as they can.

The thing that makes Tabby’s star unusual, is how much it dims — sometimes up to 20%. That’s an enormous amount. If our sun dimmed that much, life on Earth would be very different from what it is today.

In fact, Tabby’s star is so unusual that none of the regular explanations can describe it. That’s what led one astronomer to suggest that aliens might be the reason.

A type of alien megastructure, called a Dyson swarm, could — in theory — explain Tabby’s unusual dimming behavior. Most experts agree that aliens are always the last possible answer to any weird observations seen in space.

But until they can disprove this theory, Tabby’s star will remain an enigma. These new observations could be exactly what astronomers need to solve the mystery.

nothing really new or even “news” worthy here really… but i’m a sucker for Tabby’s Star and the whole notion of some advanced civilization out there harnessing the power of their sun.

feel like i’ve been keeping tabs on this one for the past couple years now, and it never really gets old.

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News Science

X-37B Two Years Later

Air Force Releases Photos of X-37B Plane After 700 Days in Space

Early Sunday, a sonic booming could be heard across central Florida as an unmanned, reusable space plane landed at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. Shortly after the unannounced landing, the Air Force tweeted that an X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle had returned from orbit.

The space plane had been circling Earth for over 700 days. It was launched by an Alliance Atlas V rocket on May 20, 2015. The X-37B’s orbital mission was entirely classified and we still don’t know exactly what it was doing up there all this time.

man, that’s kinda crazy… i remember reading and blogging about this when it launched, and totally forgot all about it until i stumbled across this just now — so it’s been up there orbiting around our lovely little blue dot for the past two years?

wow.

PS. what’s up with the guys in the white hazmat suits? seems kinda weird… what kind of experiments are they doing up there in space?!

#curious  #blink

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Science

Our Expanding Universe

If the Universe Is Expanding, What Does It Expand Into?

The universe doesn’t have to be expanding into anything in order to expand. I know that sounds ridiculous, so let me give you a different example that is easier to understand.

Imagine that you have a line that goes on forever. On that line, you have a mark every inch. There are an infinite number of inches. Now move each marker so that they are separated by two inches. The whole pattern has expanded. It still goes to infinity, but the markers are further apart. The pattern has expanded, but the length is still infinite.

Now a new example: Suppose you have a long piece of rubber, going all the way to infinity. (That piece of rubber represents the universe.) The rubber has marks on it every inch. Now stretch the rubber, until the markers are two inches apart. It still goes to infinity—but it has expanded.

Physicists think of “space” not as emptiness, but similar to a piece of rubber. (But they don’t call it rubber; they call it the “vacuum.” “Particles,” in physics, are just vibrations of the vacuum.) The vacuum can expand, just like the piece of rubber. But because it goes all the way to infinity, it doesn’t need more space. A clever way to say it is that “there’s lots of room at infinity”. (That’s clever, but it doesn’t really explain anything.)

Now here is something new that might confuse you, or might help. In the standard physics theory, the galaxies are all getting farther apart; that is the expansion of the universe. Yet in the way the theory describes it (I mean in General Relativity Theory), none of the galaxies are actually moving. All that is happening is that the amount of space (vacuum) in between them is increasing.

No, you will not learn this in school, or even in college (unless you have an extraordinary professor). It is usually taught in graduate school, when you are earning a Ph.D. degree. At that point the language you will encounter is this: “In the Big Bang Theory, all galaxies have fixed coordinates. (That means they are not moving.) The ‘expansion’ is described by the ‘metric tensor,’ which describes the distances between those fixed coordinates. In the Big Bang Theory, it is the metric tensor which is changing; that represents the expansion of the universe, even though the galaxies aren’t moving. The recent discovery of accelerated expansion means that the rate of expansion is increasing.”

Maybe you’ve read about the curvature of space. Put a black hole between two unmoving objects, and the distance between them will suddenly increase—even though they haven’t moved. So “distance” is not as simple as people thought. It was Einstein who came up with the remarkable idea that “space” (that is, vacuum) is flexible; it can curve and stretch.

I expect you will find this to be very confusing. That’s not a bad sign; it is a good one. When you learn new things that are completely different than you ever imagined, then “confusion” is the first step.

oh science, gotta love it..! the whole idea or notion that galaxies aren’t moving further from each other, but rather the space between them is expanding is a little hard to wrap your head around… especially when you throw in things like “metric tensor” and the like, but is really does make sense in a way.

#hmmmmm  #curious

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Science

Graphene: The Miracle Material

We May Finally Have a Way of Mass Producing Graphene

Hailed as the future’s 2D miracle material, graphene has remarkable applications. Graphene is essentially a one-atom thick graphite layer, made from elemental carbon. Graphene’s unique properties are due to the arrangement of carbon atoms in it, which are densely packed and arranged following a two-dimensional hexagonal pattern called a benzene ring.

Previously, it was thought too expensive to manufacture graphene. Now, physicists from Kansas State University may have found a way to mass produce graphene cheaply, and all it takes are three easy steps and uses only three simple materials: hydrocarbon gas, oxygen, and a spark plug. […]

As mentioned above, graphene’s unique carbon atom arrangement gave this miracle material its superpowers, so to speak. It’s super flexible while at the same time stiffer than diamond. It’s also a superconductor, capable of letting electricity flow faster than any other known substance. It also conducts heat very well, about 10 times better than copper. Graphene has also shown high biocompatibility and is capable of absorbing 2.3 percent of white light. And, to top it off, graphene is incredibly durable.

With all these properties, graphene has found its way into a multitude of research that explores possible applications. These range from electronics to consumer gadgets, to medicine and biomechanics. A popular application is in electronics. For example, there’s that graphene sticker which could improve smartphone battery life. There’s also a graphene-based textile which could be the future of wearable tech. And, of course, bendable screens.

i’ve heard about this incredible “graphene” material off-and-on for a few years now, and it really does seem like something out of sci-fi… personally, i find it pretty amazing that they’re able to create this stuff at all… but if this is legit, and it sure seems like it, then it really could be a bit of a game changer — and i’m sure we’ll all be hearing about graphene a lot more in the years to come ;)

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Personal Science

The ‘Movember Supermoon

yesterday was pretty damn gloomy, being that it pretty much rained the entire effin day… and it was cold on top that… but if that wasn’t bad enough, i was kinda bummed out that it rained all night too, so i wasn’t able to step outside and checkout this huge “supermoon” that i’d been hearing about this past week or two.

so yeah, that really kinda sucked.

damnit.

Supermoon all around the world…

#sigh

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Science

Watch The Earth Rise From the Moon

Try Not to Cry While Watching Earth Rise From the Moon in HD

These aren’t renderings, special effects, or a scene from No Man’s Sky. This is actual footage of the Earth and the Moon, as seen by Japan’s Kaguya spacecraft in October 2008. Shot with a pair of 2.2 megapixel HDTV sensors, it’s some of the first HD footage of our nearest neighbor that humans ever captured.

From 2007 to 2009, three Japanese scientific probes composing the Selenological and Engineering Explorer (SELENE) mission orbited the Moon, collecting troves of data along with some spectacular photos. This week, the Japanese Space Agency, JAXA, publicly released all of the images captured by the mission’s primary photographer, Kaguya.

now that really is pretty fucking sweet… i just wish it was available in 4K.

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Science

Sweet Typhoon Turbine

This New Wind Turbine Could Power Japan for 50 Years After One Typhoon

A typical typhoon produces wind speeds between 98 and 120 m.p.h. and usually leaves behind a trail of destruction. But a Japanese engineer has plans to harness a typhoon’s incredible wind energy and use it to power the nation. Atsushi Shimizu has just invented the world’s first typhoon-powered wind turbine—a roughly 18-foot structure that, with its three distinct prongs, somewhat resembles an egg beater.

Don’t be fooled by the simple design, however. According to the Atlantic Oceanographic & Meteorological Laboratory, a mature typhoon can produce a level of kinetic energy equivalent to about half of the world’s electrical generating capacity. That means that after a single typhoon, Shimizu’s invention could power Japan for up to 50 years. Add in the frequency of the country’s typhoons—anywhere from three to seven each year—and the potential for massive quantities of renewable energy is unmistakable.

dude, now that is fucking awesome.

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Online/Web Science

I’m Now A Sagittarius? Seriously, What The F*ck?!

No, NASA hasn’t changed the zodiac signs or added a new one…

Seriously? This again?

Over the weekend I started seeing links to articles claiming that NASA has changed the signs of the zodiac. I knew immediately what this was about, even as I was scratching my head about a) how this is news, and b) how short people’s memories are.

I found a few articles about this NASA “news” here and there; there’s one on Yahoo that has the headline, “Your Astrological Sign Just Changed, Thanks To NASA”. The first paragraph alone is burdened with quite a few scientific errors:

“We don’t want to be dramatic, but NASA just ruined our lives. For the first time in 3,000 years, they’ve decided to update the astrological signs. This means that the majority of us are about to experience a total identity crisis. Apparently, these changes are due to the fact that the constellations are not in the same position in the sky that they once were, and the star signs are about a month off now, as a result. To further confuse things, there is now a new, 13th sign, called Ophiuchus, which those born between November 29 and December 17 are lucky enough to have to learn to pronounce.”

Cripes. No, no, and no. First off, NASA did not “update the astrological signs”. Second, the constellations haven’t changed. And third, Ophiuchus is an ancient constellation, identified by the Greeks thousands of years ago.

So what’s the deal? Well, before we even get started, keep this in mind: astrology isn’t science; it’s nonsense. It’s been tested 10 ways to Sunday and every time it fails. Even astrologers have come up with tests for it, and it has failed those. Astrology doesn’t work.

Despite that, lots of people believe in it. That’s why I wrote a lengthy and detailed debunking of astrology.

to be honest, i was kinda freaking out a little bit last week too, over this whole “new zodiac!” thing… which is odd, since i’ve never really given two shits about my zodiac sign or put much stock into it anyways — but the fact is, i’ve been a Pisces my entire life.

until last week, when my sister pinged me about it and asked, “Hey bro, how’s it feel to be a Sagittarius now?!”

Ummm… yeah… what… the… fuck…

been trying to ignore it ever since.

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Science

NASA UFO Cover-Up?

Mystery four-armed UFO orbits the sun in startling footage that conspiracy theorists claim proves NASA alien cover-up

A gigantic four-armed UFO spotted orbiting the sun is a living space ship feeding from the star’s energy, according to conspiracy theorists. Alien enthusiasts claim NASA is covering up a huge secret about the giant space ship after footage of the UFO has been spotted repeatedly over five years.

Conspiracy theorists claim cameras on board the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured the gigantic ship beaming around the sun. But the aerospace organisation refuses to comment on what the image is suggesting that it may simply be an irregularity in the image or ‘space rubbish.’

Footage of the mysterious UFO was posted to YouTube earlier this week by UFO hunter StreetCap1 who questions “Why has NASA continually released these photos without any explanation of these anomalies?”

to be honest, i really have no effin idea what to make of this… from the photos, it certainly doesn’t look like something natural like an asteroid, not to mention the sheer size and scale of the damn thing.

wow, that really is fucking weird.

#blink

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