June 2011

Science Art: Soaking Up the Rays of a Sun-Like Star, by NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle, 2015.

452b_artistconcept_beautyshotClick to embiggen

This is an artist’s impression of a planet just discovered by NASA’s Kepler mission that’s gotten the folks at SETI all excited.

It’s the most Earth-like planet yet discovered. Kepler 452b sits in the “Goldilocks” zone around its star, not too hot and not too cold, and is about the same size (or is a little larger) and made of something like the same stuff as the planet we’re sitting around on right now. It takes 365 days to orbit around its sun, too. NASA’s calling it ou…

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SONG: "Kavachi"

SONG: “Kavachi”.

ARTIST: grant.

SOURCE:Based on “Deep-Sea Cameras Reveal a ‘Sharkcano'”, National Geographic Explorers’ Journal, 9 July 2015, as used in the post as used in the post “Live Sharks Discovered Inside A Live Volcano.”

ABSTRACT: There’s nothing I didn’t like about the process of writing this. If I was influenced by anyone in the making of this song, I guess it was The Residents, although the basic structure of it was unabashedly ripped off… myself. For about, oh, 15 ye…

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Science Art: Fig. 3, The Pocket Cephalometer, or Compass of Coordinates, by Dr. Gustave Le Bon, c.1878.

Fig 3 ThePocketCephalometer_LeBon

This is a demonstration of an instrument used to measure “cephalic index,” or how big a person’s head was. This was, at this point in the 1800s, deemed important so that we’d know how smart the person was and, generally, what kind of person he or she was.

The same pamphlet, translated into English in the 1920s, also describes a device used to map out 3D models of solid objects… so the kind of modeling that, like, made Gollum and Jurassic Park‘s dinosaurs come to life.

You can read …

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Science Art: Scheutz mechanical calculator (Zeichnung der Difference Engine No.1 aus dem Jahr 1853), 1867.

Scheutz_mechanical_calculator
Click to embiggen

Now, after that brief, regrettable interruption in service, a tribute to the computer.

This illustration is from The Elements of Natural Philosophy; Or, An Introduction to the Study of the Physical Sciences, a book Charles Brooke wrote, expanding upon the work of Golding Bird. If Brooke did the illustrations or if someone else did, I’m not sure.

This is a machine used to make mathematics; it’s an ancestor of the computer, and a kind of difference engine. The machine…

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SONG: Vulnerable Ape Theory (Going to a Blues Show with the Young Earth Creationists)

SONG: “Vulnerable Ape Theory (Going to a Blues Show with the Young Earth Creationists)”.

ARTIST: grant.

SOURCE:Based on “Vulnerability made us human: how our early ancestors turned disability into advantage”, PhysOrg, 15 June 2015, as used in the post “The Vulnerable Ape theory of human origins.

ABSTRACT: This is the late song. I had the chorus on time, but no verses. Will these do? They have mutations and selection in them.

This is a song about tolerating people who are wrong an…

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Fear remembers.

30 June 2011 // 0 Comments

Next time you’re stuck trying to get Boyle’s Law or some cute person’s email into your memory, think of something awful. That’s [...]

Plastic isn’t sexy.

29 June 2011 // 0 Comments

Not just looking at – being around it. Science Daily has the skinny on how BPA is making male mice less attractive to females: The latest research [...]

Google vs. Nonsense

28 June 2011 // 0 Comments

In my day job, I’m not a scientist – I’m a writer. So it pleases me immensely to see this New York Times piece on the innovative ways [...]

Evolution machine

27 June 2011 // 0 Comments

Genetic engineers have, in the latest New Scientist, devised a device that (deviously) speeds up the process of evolution: For instance, a yeast [...]

Uncut lovers.

24 June 2011 // 0 Comments

That’s Denmark for you. The International Journal of Epidemiology published an article from Danish researchers who found circumcision isn’t [...]

Robot astronauts.

21 June 2011 // 0 Comments

I suppose automation just made the Space Shuttle obsolete (or, well, something like that). MSNBC reports that the latest supply ship to the ISS is [...]

A dying flash.

20 June 2011 // 0 Comments

CSM takes a somber look at a star essentially giving a final wave as it’s swallowed by a black hole: Using Swift observations and others by the [...]

Star sprinklers.

16 June 2011 // 1 Comment

Just in time for summer, National Geographic lets us know that someone left the sprinklers on way up there: The discovery suggests that protostars may be [...]

Mother cow.

15 June 2011 // 0 Comments

It must be strange to work in a facility like the ones Sky News just reported on – the places where genetically modified cows produce human breast [...]
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