We’d probably make a mess out of Super Earths

November 12, 2012

Oh, what I wouldn’t give to go live on beautiful and aptly named HD 40307.

That, my friends is the name of the new Super Earth that was discovered in our own galaxy, not too far far away. It’s pretty slick. They (being relevant scientists) took a second look at a not too distant solar system which I believe was only known to have 3 planets. Now they’re discovered a few more, and one has the potential to be a super Earth, which to qualify have to have the right conditions for life, and….. well I think that’s pretty well it. Hopefully to qualify it doesn’t have to be inhabited by a bunch of idiots. And by bunch, I mean shitload… Did you WATCH that election last week? I was worried there for a bit.


This game just might be handy in the future

When I hear about stories like this, I tend to think of things that we don’t necessarily take for granted, but that we tend to forget about incredibly unique to our planet. Such as the 24-hour system! Just think how different life in general would be on a planet 7 times the size of Earth, and not necessarily the same distance from its star as Earth is from our Sun. Each day could be 72 (Earth) hours long, a year could be 3 (Earth) years, oohh the possibilities are endless! Taking a plane from one side of the planet to the other might be a 2-day trip! Well I guess everything would be kind of relative. I believe I read that they did detect (don’t ask me how) that HD 40307 could have a slight tilt, just like Earth, which means seasons! Faaantastic…. Months and months of winter, ooohh man! Again, all relative.

Sidenote, watched Prometheus last week, kind of like visiting another planet with possible humans on it…… meh, not bad. SPOILER = They turned out to fucking suck.

THAT was close….

November 8, 2011

There are a lot of things going on on this crazy planet of ours, it can get pretty distracting, but do you ever stop to think and wonder “How close DO asteroids get to pummeling Earth?”.  Neither do I, but it’s one of the countless things we take for granted while we live here.

So lo and behold, an asteroid!!  A solid close call that should be taking place…. today.  NASA has a program called the Near-Earth Object Program, which I’ve heard about once before ages ago, but basically attempts to track as many asteroids, comets, etc., and attempt to depict their drunken paths through the solar system, as opposed to their sober counterparts which stay in their orbit….. if they stick to their rehab.

This one would be a little too close for comfort.

The asteroid will be passing between the Earth and the Moon, which apparently hasn’t happened since 1976, only this time we actually know about it before it happens.  It’s roughly the size of the Toronto Rogers Centre, according to CBC.ca, but for our American comrades….. Yankee Stadium?  That’s just a guess on my part.  I can only assume stadiums and arenas are more or less the same size, and if this asteroid were actually making a house call to Earth, I doubt it would matter.

The next event like this shouldn’t happen again until 2028, giving plenty of time for an up-and-coming supervillain to totally use it to his/her advantage.  Unfortunately the Avengers are making an appearance NOW of all times, which means we’re totally screwed down the line.  I think that movie’s going to be a total let-down.

Google Street View throughout Canada!

February 10, 2010

Well, it’s official… The Google Street View car has sneakily driven every street in my city.

I never really had any use for street view, too be honest.  And now that it’s finally covered in my town, I still have no use for it.  Not like I’ve never used it before, but when you’re looking ‘through’ it in your own town, it becomes a little creepy.  You never think of it when you’re looking in other places, because you’ve never been there.  It’s like TV.  But when it becomes familiar, that’s when you kind of get a half-assed reality check about what you’re really looking at, and what you’re using.

I’m sure there are plenty of uses for street view; instead of just knowing where a restaurant is, you can look it up and actually see what it looks like, which can pretty handy.  But Google has been under fire more than once for privacy issues, or simply people just thinking “ummm, should they be doing this?”.  Google Earth being the biggest, but it’s just like any program or system that handles any personal information.  For example, I can’t count how many times I’ve seen Facebook in the headlines for privacy control in Canada, which I honestly can’t scrutinize because they’re just looking for the interest of the users.

But what I do want you to do(whoever’s reading this) is think, “Would I really freak out if my blurred picture was taken in front of my house?  What is honestly the worst that can happen?”  You’d freak out, then what…?  I don’t know what possible information they could get off of a picture of your house… even if you were hoola-hooping naked on your front lawn, the best you’d get is on one of those ‘hilarious things found on Google Earth’ sites, which I believe I would be proud of…. I think hoola-hoops are on sale for a buck this week…. I’ll be right back.

Here’s my house, looks pretty decent I guess (I just bought it). You can’t even see my house num… oh shit, I forgot to wash my bank account info off the sidewalk!

UPDATE:  While this is an old story, and while still hilarious that they were chased out of their town, the villagers do make a valid point.  Check it here…

Chemistry gets awesomized!

September 16, 2009

Holy crap I hate chemistry… Doesn’t it suck when stupid profs ruin shit for you?  Yep, it happens…. But, I’m briefly interested in chemistry again!

A couple weeks ago, scientists photographed a single molecule for the first time, which I figured was pretty cool to begin with.  Then I realized that it was pretty intense, not thinking that chemistry, like much of science, is borderline still theory because many interactions or say, individual molecules, can’t be directly observed.  So this is kind of a big deal.

The first photographed molecule..... pentacene.

The first photographed molecule..... pentacene.

Why I think this is so incredible is because before this photograph, the structure of any molecule is ‘predicted’ using energy, repulsion, and interactive techniques of individual atoms to figure it out.  So, the fact that this picture turned out to be pretty much identical to the ball and stick model of a pentacene molecule predicted using the interactions between carbon and hydrogen atoms, is pretty incredible.

Now let’s see how it interacts with fire again…

Concerning last post: What is Rocket Science?

May 30, 2009

I have no words…

This kind of makes me wonder about our future…

May 29, 2009

There are many things in life that scare me, like someone jumping out from behind a wall, or say, falling off a cliff, I dunno… But when a friend of yours says she doesn’t want to go to a White Spot restaurant because she thinks white burgers would be gross, you have to wonder… how many of you are out there?  And lo and behold, I come across this:

yahoo 1

At Geekologie.com, a fantastic blog by the by, was oh-so-kind to post the most worrisome of posts of Yahoo! Answers.  Now, I don’t even associate myself with Yahoo!, basically because it’s called Yahoo!… and it bugs me.  Anyways, if you don’t know anything about Yahoo! Answers, which I don’t, it’s basically a forum where you can ask whatever you want (unfortunately) and get feedback, and hopefully a less worrisome answer to help you out.

Now this worries me, and every time I read it I have that much less hope for mankind.  If most people can’t figure out what school is for, or realize that the state of Georgia doesn’t share borders with Russia, then how is there any hope in hell that they’ll figure out anything about energy resources, climate change, the LHC, North Korea, and all that fun stuff.  Not to mention absolutely anything I write about on this site.  But not all is lost… apparently we have intimate knowledge on how lightsabers work and the difference between the red and blue ones, which I’ve just been dying to know.  I thought it was based on good and evil… I was wrong… I should read more science journals.  We’re doomed… and I might have to dumb down my blog a little.

NEXT POST:  Basic human anatomy.

Most massive black hole discovered, so far…

May 27, 2009

Alright, so this is pretty much old news, but I wanted to write about it anyway.  So this massive black hole at the center of a quasar was discovered recently, said to be as massive as 18 billion of our Suns.  Now, I’m kind of confused about when this was discovered, because even though I’ve been seeing it in the news in the past month, all the articles I read are dated 2008 and 2007, so this might be really old news.

Artist's rendition of a black hole.

Artist's rendition of a black hole.

Technically, you can’t observe a black hole directly because it swallows up everything around it, including light, making it… well black, against a backdrop of black space, making them pretty hard to spot.  So how can you tell how big this thing is?  Well, click on the picture and read on, but believe it or not, there’s a smaller black hole orbiting around the big one, and twice a ‘year’, it goes through the disc of matter surrounding the large one, creating a burst of light/energy that can be measured from Earth.  With countless measurements, the data can infer the size of the larger black hole without ever actually ‘seeing’ it.

I thought that was pretty cool, and no worries, it doesn’t look like it’ll swallowing us up anytime soon.