News Briefs 20-05-2009

2009 is TDG’s tenth anniversary, but sometime this month we missed an even bigger event — Greg’s birthday (edit: it’s not Greg’s, my memory is playing tricks, but at least I get to eat all the cake).

Thanks Greg and Ross.

Quote of the Day:

We went to the Moon as technicians; we returned as humanitarians.

Edgar Mitchell, Apollo astronaut.

    1. Then whose..?
      Could’ve sworn it was May. Then whose birthday is it? Kat, RPJ? Mum? Oh well, the black holes that make up my mind particles must be spewing dark matter, so I wish a happy 40th to Apollo 10 instead.

      And have you noticed the new banner picture for Google search? It’s the “Missing Link” fossil. The more I read about it, the more I think it’s highly exaggerated, media sensationalism, and it’s just an early primate. No less amazing, it’s 4.7 million years old.

  1. A little Douglas…
    Given the giraffe evolution link, I can’t help but quote some Douglas Adams…

    [quote]”Africa was very interesting,” said Ford, “I behaved very oddly there.” He gazed thoughtfully into the distance. “I took up being cruel to animals,” he said airily. “But only,” he added, “as a hobby.”

    “Oh yes,” said Arthur, warily.

    “Yes,” Ford assured him. “I won’t disturb you with the details because they would -”


    “Disturb you. But you may be interested to know that I am singlehandedly responsible for the evolved shape of the animal you came to know in later centuries as a giraffe. And I tried to learn to fly. Do you believe me?”

    “Tell me,” said Arthur.

    “I’ll tell you later. I’ll just mention that the Guide says …”

    “The …?”

    “Guide. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. You remember?”

    “Yes. I remember throwing it in the river.”

    “Yes,” said Ford, “but I fished it out.”

    “You didn’t tell me.”

    “I didn’t want you to throw it in again.”

    “Fair enough,” admitted Arthur. “It says?”


    “The Guide says?”

    “The Guide says there is an art to flying,” said Ford, “or rather a knack. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.” He smiled weakly. He pointed at the knees of his trousers and held his arms up to show the elbows. They were all torn and worn through.

    “I haven’t done very well so far,” he said.

    He is missed…

    Kind regards,
    You monkeys only think you’re running things

    1. missing
      I miss Douglas too. I like science fiction, and he did such a great job of parody of the silly parts of that genre.

      Of course when he wrote

      The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss

      that is the precise definition of an orbit.


  2. A challenge for Red
    There you are, Red – use your industrial design skills to utilise Magnetic Termite ideas so we can build houses with natural inbuilt heating and air-conditioning!

    And yes, as the article says, Cape York is peppered with colonies of these clever little creatures and their high-rise dwellings. From the sea, especially, they do look exactly like enormous cemeteries filled with headstones.

    Regards, Kathrinn

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