science (18)

Photo of Earth From 106,000 Miles Up

“The first image taken by NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft after completion of its Earth Gravity Assist maneuver on Sept. 22, 2017, cropped to show in greater detail the spacecraft’s view of Earth from 69,000 miles (110,000 kilometers). The image has been rotated so that Earth’s north pole is located at the top, and the Baja Peninsula is visible above and to the right of center. Cloud cover and the Pacific Ocean dominate most of the image, but Hurricane Maria and the remnants of Hurricane Jose can be seen in the far upper-right portion of the image, off the east coast of the United States. This image was captured by NavCam 1, a black-and-white imager that is one of three cameras comprising TAGCAMS (the Touch-and-Go Camera System), which is part of OSIRIS-REx’s guidance, navigation, and control system.”

Credits: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2017/osiris-rex-snaps-pictures-of-earth-and-the-moon

Note: you can see the outline of the Baja peninsula, delineated by the narrow black band running at an angle, up and right of center. The black is the Sea of Cortez.

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Cool Tools- My Favorite Website

As I’ve said before, this is the 21st century online Whole Earth Catalog. Same M.O.: People like us writing reviews of cool stuff for other people like us. It’s embarrassing how many things I’ve obtained after reading about them here. These aren’t frivolous purchases; all the stuff is useful to me, stuff I’d never have known about otherwise.

I must point out I have a massive conflict of interest here. I’ve written a lot of CT reviews, and these guys are good friends.

That said, I periodically want to turn people onto this rich source of ad-free advice. It’s just madly useful. Take a look: https://kk.org/cooltools

Write a review and they’ll send you an email of new tools weekly.

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Stewart Brand's Summary of Jesse Ausubel's SALT Talk "Why Nature is Rebounding"

Nature rebounding? Agriculture doing well? Huh? I wish all this were true, but I find this analysis troubling. What’s wrong here? What parts of this are right and what parts are not? I’m posting this for comment.

I don’t like Stewart’s (and probably Jesse’s) take on GMOs. Gardeners, people who work with the soil and respect natural processes know intuitively there’s something wrong with the GMO juggernaut. And I’ve just found out that Kauai is a proving grounds for the GMO giants: Dow Chemical (makers of napalm, right?), Syngenta, DuPont and their like seem to be poisoning Kauai and its people in their brilliant blending of genetic manipulation, poisons, and profit.

We are as gods, right? Wrong.

In the next few days I’ll post my observations on all this. It’s especially vivid because I just saw huge fields of genetic experiments (nary a weed in sight) on the road from Waimea to Polihale Beach.

—LK

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Super-high resolution image of Andromeda from Hubble Telescope

From my friend Mickey

(Full screen please):

“Speaking of Tiny Places to live, here is an interesting video.

Each bright light is a star cluster or supernova. All the other points of light are stars. 100 million of them. They form a section of the Andromeda Galaxy which, in turn, is only a tiny piece of what we see in the night sky. And so many of those stars have planets orbiting them; many more planets than stars in this video, but unseen.

Makes our Earth seem very small. Tiny, actually.”

//www.youtube.com/embed/udAL48P5NJU

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Colors of the Rainbow

A few years ago, Jeff McWhinney, working for 3M at the time, gave me a sheet of diffraction grating film, which breaks up light into all the colors of the spectrum. I put it up, covering the south-facing window high in our office and in the afternoons, we have rainbows moving through the office, changing as the sun moves inits pattern through the sky. I walked into the office just now and wow, check out my computer.

In the ’60s we used to get this stuff (along with prisms) from Edmund Optics (which we learned about through the Whole Earth Catalog). Fahr out man! And still is.

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