Sunday, June 28, 2009

Sun leaves Earth wide open to cosmic rays - space - 27 June 2009 - New Scientist

Sun leaves Earth wide open to cosmic rays - space - 27 June 2009 - New Scientist

"The sun protects us from cosmic rays and dust from beyond the solar system by enveloping us in the heliosphere - a bubble of solar wind that extends past Pluto. These cosmic rays would damage the ozone layer, and interstellar dust could dim sunlight and trigger an ice age. However, when the solar system passes through very dense gas and dust clouds, the heliosphere can shrink until its edge is inside Earth's orbit."

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Saturday, June 27, 2009

Girl who doesn't age

There's a 30-second ABC commercial preceding the video unfortunately, but a very interesting video.

Girl Who Doesn't Age 'Infant' of... - ABC News

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Friday, June 26, 2009

Britain came close to dropping poisoned darts on German troops - Times Online

"Britain considered dropping millions of poisoned darts on German troops in the final stages of the Second World War, secret files made public have revealed.

...Designs show three different types of dart. One looks like a fountain pen, the others like a flat penknife."

Read the full article here.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

NPR: Boeing Delays Dreamliner's 1st Flight After Test Shows Bad Surprise

"Boeing announced another delay in getting its 787 Dreamliner into commercial service. A structural weakness found where the wings join the fuselage which sounds like as good a reason as any for a delay."

Friday, June 19, 2009

Those Medieval Monks Could Draw!

“Pen and Parchment: Drawing in the Middle Ages” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, features 50 rarely-seen works on view.

Roberta Smith writes:
The works span nearly five centuries and reveal medieval drawing to be vital, evolving, remarkably diverse and essential to the medium’s Renaissance blossoming.

Read the full NY Times article here.

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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Wedding dance

June is the month for weddings. Here's a couple's slightly different take on the traditional first dance...

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Jinhao Dragon Pearl

Jinhao Dragon Pearl series

Read about the pen here.

Planet 'spotted' in Andromeda galaxy

Astronomers believe they may have discovered the first planet ever detected in another galaxy. The new world was apparently glimpsed in the closest giant spiral galaxy to the Milky Way, Messier 31 in the constellation of Andromeda. It lies an incredible 2.5 million light-years away - too far normally to be seen. But it revealed itself thanks to a phenomenon called microlensing where the gravitational field of an object closer to Earth acts like a magnifying glass.

Read the article here.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

...and then we have...

Air Writing: Next Big Thing in Cell Phones?

"Forget fumbling with tiny cell phone keys. A prototype of a new application allows cell phone users to write short notes in the air and send them automatically to an e-mail address.

This represents just one possible step toward allowing people to naturally merge the real world with the information power of the Internet. Travelers and other mobile users could air-write notes to themselves rather than have to text on the run.

"By holding the phone like a pen, you can write short messages or draw simple diagrams in the air," said Sandip Agrawal, an electrical and computer engineering student at Duke University in North Carolina."

Full article here.

...and something of a counterbalance to the post below...

iPhone Cursive Writing App Hits the App Store

"Deep Pocket Series has unveiled ABC Cursive Writing 1.0, a handwriting improvement app for the iPhone and iPod touch. The app was designed to help children learn the basics of cursive writing for the first time, as well as help adults improve their handwriting skills."

Read the full article here.

E-mail, texting push penmanship aside | | Asheville Citizen-Times

"Have you heard that some people believe it would be a good thing if cursive writing — or script, if you will — went the way of the horse and buggy? All those years of learning and struggling for a beautiful “hand” will be for naught.

But think of it: When was the last time you wrote cursive except to sign a check or legal document or pen a note to your grandmother? And when is the last time you got an actual hand-written letter?

Most of us write on keyboards, or we Twitter or send phone messages now. It's all very legible, and the recipient can read it with no trouble. Word processing creates a level playing field for those of us whose writing isn't so great."

Read the full article here.