Remember all those Star Trek episodes that mention ‘parsecs’? Thanks to Thunderbolts, I’ve just found out that one cubic parsec equals 9.78 cubic light-years. But burgyboy says wikipedia disagrees with that figure.
And congrats to Liverpool — 4 to 1 is quite a rout!
- What happened to Pharaoh’s workers?
- Archaeologists claim they’ve discovered the remains of Cleopatra’s younger sister. Then again, maybe not.
- Those nice Vikings did a lot for us – and it wasn’t all pillaging.
- Monk’s note in 13th Century manuscript suggests Robin Hood and his Merry Men weren’t so popular after all. Bah, Humbug.
- Researchers explore the ancient world’s longest underground aqueduct. How did the Romans accomplish such a feat?
- 1,700-year-old book reveals what made Romans laugh.
- Expedition finds mass grave of young dinosaurs.
- Explorer’s amazon quest became a fatal obsession. David Grann’s The Lost City of Z is available at Amazon US (including interview with author) & UK.
- Giant fish trap built by ancient Britons 1,000 years ago rediscovered after being spotted on Google Earth.
- Thief used Google Earth to hunt down £100,000 fortune in lead roofs which he stole from historic buildings in London.
- Space shuttle blasts off on mission to the ISS.
- Space station may have to duck orbiting debris – again. Recent ‘close calls’ have put focus on traffic jam in space. The space shuttle regularly endures a worrisome number of impacts from space junk.
- A Great Visionary of Our Time: Sir Tim Berners-Lee – who, 20 years ago, invented the World Wide Web. Berners-Lee has recently been condemning online privacy invasion.
- US research suggests, after peaking at age 22, mental powers start to dwindle at age 27 — marking the start of old age. But not to worry…
- In 1928, at age 72, Nicola Tesla was awarded his last patent – for a helicopter-plane (pdf) which could rise (and descend) vertically like a helicopter, then tilt 90 degrees in mid-air to fly horizontally like airplane. (Note: correction of one equation at the end.)
- Who was Nicola Tesla? An inspiration to mad scientists everywhere! Via the cool website of Stoneridge Engineering — wrecking havoc with electrons for over forty years. Check out their Quarter Shrinker and Lichtenberg Figures too.
- In many ways, Tesla was a lot like Michael Faraday, who conducted excellent experimental researches in electricity and the direct relationship between light and magnetic and electrical forces. Faraday even attempted a grand unified theory.
- Thunderbolts takes on the growing cadre of theoretical astronomers who are focused on dark matter without observations or data to interpret.
- ISIS: Darpa’s all-seeing super-blimp.
- US plans surveillance aircraft that can fly more than 12 miles high for 10 years without landing.
- Do our eyes betray us when we lie? US seeks ‘Bladerunner’ lie detector.
- Scientists compile list of top 10 things that should have changed the world but failed to make much of an impact.
- By invitation (of Richard Dawkins) only: Misogyny is a characteristic that religion and science – often so antithetical to each other – share, and for many of the same reasons.
- UFO formation in South Africa filmed by cops. See video here.
- Very clear photos prove cougars are definitely in Wisconsin.
- *Gasp!* It’s the Grim! Hellhound stalking Cannock Chase.
- Trinidad rancher finds mutilated cow. Was his cow abducted by a UFO?
- The truth …is furry? Sasquatch footprints found in Moricetown, one of which contained blood and hair. Sasquatch evidence convincing, says local expert.
- ‘Advanced wood combustion’ power plants in the US could sustainably supply enormous amounts of energy, comparable to power production from hydroelectric dams, while also saving energy, cutting costs, and even fighting global warming.
Quote of the Day:
We should work toward a universal linked information system, in which generality and portability are more important than fancy graphics techniques and complex extra facilities.
The aim would be to allow a place to be found for any information or reference which one felt was important, and a way of finding it afterwards. The result should be sufficiently attractive to use that it the information contained would grow past a critical threshold, so that the usefulness the scheme would in turn encourage its increased use.
The passing of this threshold accelerated by allowing large existing databases to be linked together and with new ones.
Sir Tim Berners-Lee, in Information Management: A proposal — the modest 1989 proposal which led to the creation of the internet. Berners-Lee adds, ‘Note that the only name I had for it at this time was ‘Mesh’ — I decided on ‘World Wide Web’ when writing the code in 1990.‘