Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Cosmic Asperations

Image: manostphoto /

Natural resources on Earth are limited.  The geological processes that create materials cannot keep pace with the rate at which we're using them.  Not even close.

It makes sense that we have to start expanding our horizons to include outer space when we look for the materials needed to sustain us.  It was only a matter of time before someone had the inspiration and determination to start mining asteroids.  Planetary Resources Inc., which is being backed by the deep pockets and grand imaginations of James Cameron and others, plans to do just that.

They're everywhere, and they have materials that could be invaluable to us.  Now, there are arguments both for and against this enterprise.  One argument is that the cost is so high to retrieve these materials that it would be a waste.  There are also, as there are with any new endeavor, risks involved.

Here's where I fall on the issue.  Resources will undoubtedly run low.  The cost of sending anything into space is also high.  If we have a mining operation set up in space, we could build ships and colonies more cheaply because we would no longer have to pay to launch them from Earth.  This is expensive in the short term, yes, but in the end, it could pay off in so many ways.

I guess we'll see how it goes.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Do the Bill Nye Slide

I grew up watching Bill Nye.  Now I've seen his dance moves, and my life will never be the same.  Who said scientists couldn't be cool?

Flyin' Sulu!

Happy 75th birthday, George Takei!  Best known for his role as Hikaru Sulu, he is truly immortal.  And dang it, he looks so cool with that tea cup!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Our Spectacular Solar System

It's not everyday I double post, but I couldn't resist when I saw this.  An unemployed game developer, Christopher Albeluhn, created this amazing solar system.  He intended to use it for a portfolio.  I know I'd hire him after seeing this.


Nerd Language

When you're dealing with geekdom, you must understand that there's a different language.  When dealing with a  group of people, or in this instance just two, who get into a conversation concerning geek culture, accept the fact that, as an outsider, you won't have a clue what's going on.

That's okay.

And if you have a burning need to understand, visit this page and click on Geek Therapy.  These experts will have you crossing that cultural barrier in no time.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Holograms R' Us

I was thinking about holograms today, and I remembered this video that I saw a couple years ago.  I managed to track it down and share it with you.  It's pretty funny, and will make you think twice about creating a hologram army.

Friday, April 13, 2012

The Power of Nature

All I can say is that the power of nature is humbling.  It's also beautiful, provided, of course, that you aren't stuck in the path of destruction.

Here's a link to a video talking about the intriguing phenomenon known as "upward lightning."

And here's a video showing a wide range of weather events. Enjoy them from the comfort of your home, because if you're there in person, your experience will be anything but comfortable.

Monday, April 9, 2012

It Takes a Rube Goldberg . . .

I had to share this.  I've always found Rube Goldberg machines ridiculously entertaining.  They also show you a lot about physics, so where can you go wrong?  Besides the time lost in taking the longest way possible to do everything, of course.  The Purdue Society of Professional Engineers broke the world record by building the world' largest functional Rube Goldberg machine.  What is its function? you ask.  To pop a balloon in no fewer than 300 steps.

Hold on to your seats, because this is going to rock.

3D Dreams

When I first heard about this, I thought I had to be dreaming.  Oh the beauty of it all.

There are more videos on You Tube demonstrating this capability. Perhaps it isn't practical technology, but having seen some of the other 3D printers out there, I'm encouraged by the sophistication of technology. Who knows where it might go from here? Here's an example of the practical applications of 3D printing (not in chocolate though).  The implications for the space program alone are enormous.te


Monday, April 2, 2012

Poster Girlfriend

How many of us as teenagers, or even adults for that matter, looked at posters of movie or music stars and fantasized about what it would be like to be with them?  Except I recall fantasizing about the real person.  I never dreamed about making out with the actual poster.

Apparently some have.

Fascinating technology, but I'll admit that I don't understand the appeal. The interaction is very limited, and even if they do add in the flavor, you're still kissing a screen. And if it's in public, who would really want to kiss something that's been who kissed by who knows how many people? Yuck!

Even so, I'm at least curious how the technology will progress beyond this. How long before we fulfill the predictions of science fiction and have fully interactive companion robots? Time will tell.