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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: Stuff & Nonsense  (Read 48079 times)
WingsofCrystal
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4560 on: Jul 16th, 2011, 12:19pm »

.





Uploaded by AppleSauceTrailers on Jul 15, 2011

FOLLOW US http://www.twitter.com/Applesaucetime
FOLLOW THE CREATORS http://www.twitter.com/DaveyJr http://www.twitter.com/heyimandy

SUBSCRIBE FAV LIke and LOVE US! WE"LL LOVE YOU BACK!

It also helps if you watch the actual Captain America Movie Trailer 2011
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-J3HfllvXWE

We had so much fun and help from the sweetest, most awesome people! Thanks for watching! Leave all your suggestions for our next Trailer parody in the comments below and we will look at each and every one of them.

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« Reply #4561 on: Jul 16th, 2011, 12:23pm »

Excerpts from today's world of astro-physics.
(There'll be a quiz later.....)
wink


Stellar Clusters in M31 from PHAT: Survey Overview and First Results

(1) University of Washington, (2) Harvard-Smithsonian CfA, (3) MPIA, (4) University of Utrecht, (5) NOAO, (6) University of Florida)

The Panchromatic Hubble Andromeda Treasury (PHAT) is an on-going Hubble Space Telescope (HST) multi-cycle program that will image one-third of the M31 disk at high resolution, with wavelength coverage from the ultraviolet through the near-infrared. This dataset will allow for the construction of the most complete catalog of stellar clusters obtained for a spiral galaxy.

Here, we provide an overview of the PHAT survey, a progress report on the status of observations and analysis, and preliminary results from the PHAT cluster program.

Although only ~20% of the survey is complete, the superior resolution of HST has allowed us to identify hundreds of new intermediate and low mass clusters. As a result, the size of the cluster sample within the Year 1 survey footprint has grown by a factor of three relative to previous catalogs.

http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/1107.2668


Magnetic Fields in Earth-like Exoplanets and Implications for Habitability around M-dwarfs

Conference Proceedings, Montpellier, France, July 3-8 2011

We present estimations of dipolar magnetic moments for terrestrial exoplanets using the Olson & Christiansen (2006) scaling law and assuming their interior structure is similar to Earth.

We find that the dipolar moment of fast rotating planets (where the Coriolis force dominates convection in the core), may amount up to ~80 times the magnetic moment of Earth, M_Earth, for at least part of the planets' lifetime.

For very slow rotating planets (where the force of inertia dominates), the dipolar magnetic moment only reaches up to ~1.5 M_Earth.
Applying our calculations to currently confirmed rocky exoplanets, we find that CoRoT-7b, Kepler-10b and 55 Cnc e can sustain dynamos up to ~ 18, 15 and 13 M_Earth, respectively.

Our results also indicate that the magnetic moment of rocky exoplanets not only depends on their rotation rate, but also on their formation history, thermal state, age and composition, as well as the geometry of the field. These results apply to all rocky planets, but have important implications for the particular case of exoplanets in the Habitable Zone of M-dwarfs.

http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/1107.2804


On the Detection of (Habitable) Super-Earths Around Low-Mass Stars Using Kepler and Transit Timing Variation Method


Celestial Mechanics and Dynamical Astronomy (special issue on extrasolar planets)

We present the results of an extensive study of the detectability of Earth-sized planets and super-Earths in the habitable zones of cool and low-mass stars using transit timing variation method. We have considered a system consisting of a star, a transiting giant planet, and a terrestrial-class perturber, and calculated TTVs for different values of the parameters of the system.

To identify ranges of the parameters for which these variations would be detectable by Kepler, we considered the analysis presented by Ford et al. (2011, ArXiv:1102.0544) and assumed that a peak-to-peak variation of 20 seconds would be within the range of the photometric sensitivity of this telescope. We carried out simulations for resonant and non-resonant orbits, and identified ranges of the semimajor axes and eccentricities of the transiting and perturbing bodies for which an Earth-sized planet or a super-Earth in the habitable zone of a low-mass star would produce such TTVs.

Results of our simulations indicate that in general, outer perturbers near first- and second-order resonances show a higher prospect for detection. Inner perturbers are potentially detectable only when near 1:2 and 1:3 mean-motion resonances. For a typical M star with a Jupiter-mass transiting planet, for instance, an Earth-mass perturber in the habitable zone can produce detectable TTVs when the orbit of the transiting planet is between 15 and 80 days.

We present the details of our simulations and discuss the implication of the results for the detection of terrestrial planets around different low-mass stars.

http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/1107.2885

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« Reply #4562 on: Jul 16th, 2011, 12:25pm »

Steampunk Dalek
by Alex Holden


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http://weburbanist.com/2008/07/28/creative-steampunk-art-and-fashion/

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« Reply #4563 on: Jul 16th, 2011, 12:27pm »

"Excerpts from today's world of astro-physics.
(There'll be a quiz later.....)"



shocked

I stink at exams......... tongue

Hey Swamp.

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« Reply #4564 on: Jul 16th, 2011, 1:55pm »

Political Spinning is an Art

Judy Wallman, a professional genealogy researcher in southern California , was doing some personal work on her own family tree. She discovered that Harry (senator [D] from Nevada ) Reid's great-great uncle, Remus Reid, was hanged for horse stealing and train robbery in Montana in 1889. Both Judy and Harry Reid share this common ancestor.

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The only known photograph of Remus shows him standing on the gallows in Montana territory.

On the back of the picture Judy obtained during her research is this inscription:
'Remus Reid, horse thief, sent to Montana Territorial Prison 1885, escaped 1887, robbed the Montana Flyer six times. Caught by Pinkerton detectives, convicted and hanged in 1889.'


So Judy recently e-mailed Senator Harry Reid for information about their mutual great-great uncle.

Believe it or not, Harry Reid's staff sent back the following biographical sketch for her genealogy research:

'Remus Reid was a famous cowboy in the Montana Territory . His business empire grew to include acquisition of valuable equestrian assets and intimate dealings with the Montana railroad. Beginning in 1883, he devoted several years of his life to government service, finally taking leave to resume his dealings with the railroad. In 1887, he was a key player in a vital investigation run by the renowned Pinkerton Detective Agency. In 1889, Remus Reid died tragically during an important civic function held in his honor when the platform upon which he was standing collapsed.'
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« Reply #4565 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 07:31am »

Hey Swamp,

That is certainly political spin on your ancestry! Reid should just own up to the old horse thief. Hope they were doing that tongue in cheek. grin

Crystal
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« Reply #4566 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 07:34am »

New York Times

July 16, 2011
Stain From Tabloids Rubs Off on a Cozy Scotland Yard
By DON VAN NATTA Jr.

LONDON — For nearly four years they lay piled in a Scotland Yard evidence room, six overstuffed plastic bags gathering dust and little else.

Inside was a treasure-trove of evidence: 11,000 pages of handwritten notes listing nearly 4,000 celebrities, politicians, sports stars, police officials and crime victims whose phones may have been hacked by The News of the World, a now defunct British tabloid newspaper.

Yet from August 2006, when the items were seized, until the autumn of 2010, no one at the Metropolitan Police Service, commonly referred to as Scotland Yard, bothered to sort through all the material and catalog every page, said former and current senior police officials.

During that same time, senior Scotland Yard officials assured Parliament, judges, lawyers, potential hacking victims, the news media and the public that there was no evidence of widespread hacking by the tabloid. They steadfastly maintained that their original inquiry, which led to the conviction of one reporter and one private investigator, had put an end to what they called an isolated incident.

After the past week, that assertion has been reduced to tatters, torn apart by a spectacular avalanche of contradictory evidence, admissions by News International executives that hacking was more widespread, and a reversal by police officials who now admit to mishandling the case.

Assistant Commissioner John Yates of the Metropolitan Police Service publicly acknowledged that he had not actually gone through the evidence. “I’m not going to go down and look at bin bags,” Mr. Yates said, using the British term for trash bags.

At best, former Scotland Yard senior officers acknowledged in interviews, the police have been lazy, incompetent and too cozy with the people they should have regarded as suspects. At worst, they said, some officers might be guilty of crimes themselves.

“It’s embarrassing, and it’s tragic,” said a retired Scotland Yard veteran. “This has badly damaged the reputation of a really good investigative organization. And there is a major crisis now in the leadership of the Yard.”

The testimony and evidence that emerged last week, as well as interviews with current and former officials, indicate that the police agency and News International, the British subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation and the publisher of The News of the World, became so intertwined that they wound up sharing the goal of containing the investigation.

Members of Parliament said in interviews that they were troubled by a “revolving door” between the police and News International, which included a former top editor at The News of the World at the time of the hacking who went on to work as a media strategist for Scotland Yard.

On Friday, The New York Times learned that the former editor, Neil Wallis, was reporting back to News International while he was working for the police on the hacking case.

Executives and others at the company also enjoyed close social ties to Scotland Yard’s top officials. Since the hacking scandal began in 2006, Mr. Yates and others regularly dined with editors from News International papers, records show. Sir Paul Stephenson, the police commissioner, met for meals 18 times with company executives and editors during the investigation, including on eight occasions with Mr. Wallis while he was still working at The News of the World.

Senior police officials declined several requests to be interviewed for this article.

The police have continually asserted that the original investigation was limited because the counterterrorism unit, which was in charge of the case, was preoccupied with more pressing demands. At the parliamentary committee hearing last week, the three officials said they were working on 70 terrorist investigations.

Yet the Metropolitan Police unit that deals with special crimes, and which had more resources and time available, could have taken over the case, said four former senior investigators. One said it was “utter nonsense” to argue that the department did not have enough resources.

Another senior investigator said officials saw the inquiry as being in “safe hands” at the counterterrorism unit.

Interviews with current and former officials show that instead of examining all the evidence, investigators primarily limited their inquiry to 36 names that the private investigator, Glenn Mulcaire, mentioned in one list.

As a result, Scotland Yard notified only a small number of the people whose phones were hacked by The News of the World. Other people who suspected foul play had to approach the police to see if their names were in Mr. Mulcaire’s files.

“It’s one thing to decide not to investigate,” said Jeremy Reed, one of the lawyers who represents numerous phone-hacking victims. “But it’s quite another thing not to tell the victims. That’s just mind-blowing.”

Among the possible victims was former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who asked the police last year to look into suspicions that his phones were hacked. In response, Scotland Yard sent him a form letter saying it was unclear whether the tabloid had eavesdropped on his conversations, people with knowledge of the request said.

The police assigned a new team to the hacking allegations in September after The New York Times published a magazine article that showed that the practice was far more widespread and which raised questions about Scotland Yard’s handling of the case.

Shortly after, the police finally reopened those “bin bags.” Now, the police are enduring the painstaking and humiliating exercise of notifying nearly 4,000 angry people listed in the documents that they may have been targets of what now appears to be industrial-strength hacking by The News of the World. The chore is likely to take years.

A Series of Inquiries

Scotland Yard’s new inquiry, dubbed Operation Weeting, has led to the arrests of a total of nine reporters and editors, with more expected. And the police have opened another inquiry into allegations that some officers were paid for confidential information by reporters at The News of the World and elsewhere.

The Metropolitan Police itself is now the subject of a judicial inquiry into what went wrong with their initial case, as well as into the ties between the department’s top officers and executives and reporters for News International.

At a parliamentary committee hearing last week, three current and former officials who ran the case were openly mocked. One member of Parliament dubbed an investigator “more Clouseau than Colombo.”

At the hearing, the senior investigator in charge of the day-to-day inquiry, Peter Clarke, blamed The News of the World’s “complete lack of cooperation” for the shortcomings in the department’s initial investigation.

While editors were not sharing any information, they were frequently breaking bread with police officers. Andy Hayman, who as chief of the counterterrorism unit was running the investigation, also attended four dinners, lunches and receptions with News of the World editors, including a dinner on April 25, 2006, while his officers were gathering evidence in the case, records show. He told Parliament he never discussed the investigation with editors.

Mr. Hayman left the Metropolitan Police in December 2007 and was soon hired to write a column for The Times of London, a News International paper. He defended the inquiry that he led, writing in his column in July 2009 that his detectives had “left no stone unturned.”

Three months later, Mr. Wallis, the former deputy editor of The News of the World, was hired by Scotland Yard to provide strategic media advice on phone-hacking matters to the police commissioner, among others. Scotland Yard confirmed last week that the commissioner, Sir Paul, had personally approved nearly $40,000 in payments to Mr. Wallis for his work.

But when Mr. Wallis was interviewed in April by a New York Times reporter working on a story about the hacking, he did not disclose his new media role at Scotland Yard. In the interview, Mr. Wallis defended both the newspaper and the vigor of Scotland Yard’s initial investigation.

A person familiar with the hacking investigation said on Friday that Mr. Wallis had also informed Rebekah Brooks about The New York Times’s reporting. Ms. Brooks, who resigned on Friday as chief executive officer of News International, has maintained that she was unaware of the hacking.

A News International spokeswoman said the company was reviewing whether it had paid Mr. Wallis at the same time.

It is unclear whether Scotland Yard knew about Mr. Wallis’s activities. While The New York Times was working on its article last year, Scotland Yard was refusing to answer most of the detailed questions that The Times submitted to it in a freedom of information request.

It was not until Thursday night that Scotland Yard revealed that Mr. Wallis had worked for it for a year. That revelation came about 10 hours after he was arrested at his west London home in connection with the phone hacking.

“This is stunning,” a senior Scotland Yard official who retired within the past few years said when informed about Mr. Wallis’s secret dual role. “It appears to be collusion. It has left a terrible odor around the Yard.”

Sky News raised further questions about a possible link between Sir Paul and Mr. Wallis on Saturday night. Just after Christmas last year Sir Paul recovered from surgery at a Champneys Spa in Hertfordshire, and his $19,000 bill was paid by a friend, the spa’s managing partner, Sky News reported.

more after the jump
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/17/world/europe/17police.html?_r=1&hp

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« Reply #4567 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 07:38am »

Reuters

Heavy casualties reported in Libya
By Peter Graff
Sun Jul 17, 2011 7:52am EDT

FRONT LINE NEAR BIR GHANAM, Libya (Reuters) - Ten Libyan rebels were reported killed and 172 wounded in an attack on the eastern oil port of Brega on Saturday, while insurgents drove back forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi in the west.

In the latest of a series of speeches apparently designed to show he enjoys support in the areas he controls, Gaddafi described the rebels as worthless traitors and rejected suggestions that he was about to leave the country.

"They said Gaddafi will go to Honolulu," he said in a televised speech. "This is funny: To leave the graves of my forefathers and my people? Are you serious?"

His defiance came a day after Western and Arab powers, led by the United States, said the rebel leadership was the legitimate government of Libya. Reports have circulated that Gaddafi is seeking a negotiated way out of the crisis.

Libyan television also reported what it called an "enemy attack" on Tajoura district east of Tripoli early on Sunday, the first such bombing raid by NATO near the capital in several nights, a Reuters witness said.

The television said the strike had hit "civilian and military sites" but did not specify what they were or mention if there had been any casualties.

Brega's oil resources make it a prize for the rebels, who have been trying to dislodge Gaddafi's troops in the face of rocket bombardments, according to Al Jazeera television.

Most opposition fighters are about 20 km (12 miles) outside Brega, kept back by Grad rockets fired by government forces, the network reported. The rebels had however captured four government soldiers.

In the Western Mountains, where insurgents are trying to push toward Tripoli, heavy fighting erupted on Saturday.

Sustained gunfire and volleys of artillery could be heard from the village of Bir Ayad, 15 km (9 miles) south of the front line at the town of Bir Ghanam.

Rebels at Bir Ghanam hold the high ground on the outskirts of the town, their closest position to Tripoli, about 80 km (50 miles) away.

Ahmed, a rebel fighter in Bir Ayad, said a convoy of about 15 vehicles from Gaddafi's forces tried to approach Bir Ghanam, but the rebels fired at it and the convoy retreated after a about an hour of shooting.

"They were in a column at first but when we started firing they split into groups of three or four vehicles and all of them fled," local rebel commander Fathi Alzintani told Reuters.

ASSAULTS REPELLED

Rebels in the Western Mountains have made progress in recent weeks after repelling assaults by Gaddafi's forces. Their next goal is Garyan, a town that controls the highway south from Tripoli.

But the rebels have been hampered by divisions, ill-discipline and supply problems.

In Misrata, the rebels' main stronghold in the west, six rebel fighters have been killed and four injured in the past 24 hours, hospital staff said.

Away from the battlefield, Gaddafi has made a series of audio speeches to coincide with state television broadcasts of rallies attended by thousands of people in Tripoli and elsewhere.

As loyalists gathered on the streets of the town of Zawiyah, near the capital, on Saturday, Gaddafi said the rebels were "apostates" who had "become Christians."

Calling on the rebels to lay down their arms, he said: "Islam is being humiliated by the cross ... They are burning mosques with bombs."

"We have given martyrs, yes ... It's impossible to compromise or make the slightest concession."

Crowds were shown firing to the air at the end of the speech.

Rebel leaders received a boost in their campaign to oust Gaddafi on Friday when they won recognition as the legitimate government of Libya from the United States and other powers.

Western nations said they planned to increase the military pressure on Gaddafi's forces to make him to give up power after 41 years at the head of the North African state.

Recognition of the rebels by the international contact group on Libya is an important diplomatic step that could unlock billions of dollars in frozen Libyan funds.

The decision came as reports circulated Gaddafi had sent out emissaries seeking a negotiated end to the conflict, although he remains defiant in public.

The contact group also agreed on a road map whereby Gaddafi should relinquish power and put forward plans for Libya's transition to democracy under the rebel National Transitional Council.

(Additional reporting by Souhail Karam, Andrew Quinn, Ibon Villelabeitia and Lutfi Abu Oun; Writing by Giles Elgood; Editing by Michael Roddy)

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/07/17/us-libya-idUSTRE76E0M720110717

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« Reply #4568 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 07:42am »

Wired

Make It So: Hands-On With Official Star Trek iPad App
By Ryan Paul
July 16, 2011 | 9:00 am
Categories: sci-fi


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The new PADD app brings Star Trek to the iPad.


CBS Interactive has launched an official Star Trek PADD application for the iPad. The 190-MB program contains a browsable library of Star Trek information presented with a distinctive user interface modeled after the Federation’s LCARS software environment. And because we’re Star Trek nerds, we thought we’d take a look. You know, for science.

The information that users can read in the PADD application appears to be the same that is hosted in the database on the official StarTrek.com website. The database entries are organized into categories, which include characters, species, vessels, places and episodes. It draws details from all canonical Star Trek sources, including the movies, television shows and animated series.

Selecting a category will cause the application to display a massive alphabetical list of associated entries, which unfortunately isn’t particularly comfortable for casual browsing. There doesn’t appear to be a way to further filter a category by other parameters. I wanted to be able to browse the episode list by show and season, for example, but such functionality isn’t provided.

Does Everyone Know About This Grain but Me?
The breadth of the database is fairly impressive — it has entries on a wide range of topics, including some that are highly obscure or only mentioned in passing during the series. For example, there is an entry about coffee (they still drink copious amounts of it in the 24th century, especially Captain Janeway) and Bob Hope (a favorite of the 22nd-century Enterprise crew).

Despite the breadth, we noticed a few odd omissions. The character section of the database, for example, has a lengthy entry about Porthos — Captain Archer’s pet beagle — but sadly lacks an entry about Spot, Data’s pet cat. Another very serious and disappointing oversight is the lack of an entry about quadrotriticale, a high-yield hybrid of wheat and rye.

The individual entries tend to be concise and less encyclopedic than the equivalent entries at community-driven resources like Memory Alpha and Wikipedia. The style and format of the PADD database entries make the application handy for simple reference, but it’s much less useful than the wikis if you want more substantial background information and insight into historical events of the Star Trek canon.

The longer entries have some basic cross-linking so that you can dig into other entries, but not nearly to the same extent as Memory Alpha. Similarly, it has less supporting graphical media. There is at least one thumbnail for most of the episodes, but a lot of the other informational entries lack images.

For example, the entry about warp drive, which consists of only four sentences, has no graphical accompaniment. By comparison, the equivalent entry at Memory Alpha has a complete history of human and Federation warp technology development and several images.

The Truth Is Just an Excuse for a Lack of Imagination
In addition to information about the Star Trek universe, the database also has entries about actors, writers and other people who were involved in the making of the show. This is useful if you happen to be watching Total Recall and want to check the entry about Marc Alaimo to confirm your suspicion that your favorite Cardassian megalomaniac is in the ’90s Schwarzenegger flick. Seriously, Gul Dukat and Captain Jellico (Senator Kinsey, for the Gaters) appearing in the same movie is more than a little bit creepy.

On the other hand, the fact that the application basically breaks out of character by including entries about real-world topics might disappoint the Star Trek purists.

The application has a built-in search feature that allows you to type in a query with the iPad’s on-screen keyboard. The application will display entries that match the query. The search feature worked relatively well, but the standard iPad keyboard looks terribly out of place in the LCARS environment.

more after the jump
http://www.wired.com/underwire/2011/07/star-trek-padd-ipad/

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« Reply #4569 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 07:46am »

LA Times

L.A. downshifts, and the driving is easy

Motorists largely heed the warnings about 'Carmageddon' and stay off the freeways and roads officials feared could be gridlocked. A race between cyclists and a jetliner adds some drama.

By Alan Zarembo, Ari Bloomekatz, Nicole Santa Cruz, Los Angeles Times
July 17, 2011

For all the doomsday warnings about "Carmageddon," the first day largely came down to one question: Could a group of bicycle riders beat a plane across Los Angeles?

Life without the 405 Freeway to connect the San Fernando Valley and Westside was remarkable only for what didn't happen. The canyons of the Hollywood Hills did not become giant parking lots. Hospitals did not go unstaffed. Stranded motorists did not abandon their cars and stagger down the freeways in search of food and water.

But although gridlock never materialized, something unexpected did: Los Angeles' car culture took a day off. Many people simply stayed home. Flying down open freeways was reminiscent of the traffic-free days during the 1984 Olympics.

The free-flowing traffic was proof, officials said, that their warnings had worked.

In a California Department of Transportation "nerve center," a giant electronic road map of Los Angeles glowed green all day. "Saturday light," as Mike Miles, a Caltrans executive, called it.

Carmageddon could turn out to be the biggest non-event since Y2K.

Not that the day lacked drama. In the great tradition of the land of reality television, Los Angeles created its own.

First came a clever marketing ploy from JetBlue Airways: $4 flights Saturday between Burbank and Long Beach airports.

A flurry of Twitter activity ensued, followed by tough talk from the Wolfpack Hustle, a local cycling club, that six of its best riders could beat the 150-seat Airbus A320 — including drive time to and from the airports, check-in and security screening.

In the end, the cyclists crushed it, cruising along the Los Angeles River to reach the final destination, the lighthouse in Shoreline Aquatic Park, in 1 hour and 34 minutes.

The plane had barely taken off. Cyclist Joe Anthony, on board as part of the challenge, said there was only one advantage to the airliner.

"It's legal to drink beer and fly, whereas the cyclists have to follow all the rules," he said.

Most passengers flew purely for the novelty. Alfred Pierfax, who was heading straight back to Burbank on the next plane, said he was unimpressed by Carmageddon.

"I'm going to call it 'Carmadud,' " he said.

Still, it was a rare day in Los Angeles.

Even the much anticipated soccer game between the L.A. Galaxy and Real Madrid wasn't creating traffic woes as fans arrived at the Coliseum on Saturday afternoon — and found themselves with time to kill.

"Not once did we drive under 60 on the way here," said Vatche Marganian, who came from Orange County using the 91 and 110 freeways.

Michele Cohn, who was perusing a garage sale in Santa Monica, said she felt like she was living in a small town for the day. "Its amazing; I love it. I wish it were like this all the time."

Traffic isn't a bad thing for taxi drivers, as long as the meter is running. But cabbie Mark Rivkind said not only were most roads traffic-free, but hardly anybody wanted a ride.

"No Carmageddon!" he complained while parked outside an LAX terminal waiting for somebody, anybody, to get in.

One astute woman realized what many others missed: The southbound 405 lanes south of the Mulholland Drive bridge, whose partial demolition caused the closure, were actually left open. Heather Grimmer didn't have anywhere to go, but she went anyway, shooting a video of the empty freeway and posting it on YouTube.

"It was literally completely empty," she said. "Like, completely empty. It was great."

A couple of cyclists trying to get on the freeway were arrested by state troopers. A skateboarder and a jogger were also cited.

Tom White, a helicopter co-pilot, marveled at the emptiness of the 405 as he shuttled passengers from Van Nuys to LAX. The 14-minute trip cost $150.

"I've been stressed for days," said one passenger, Kevin Norris, a professional golf caddy who needed to catch a flight to France. "I didn't want to spend five hours in a car. When I saw this advertised, I thought that's got to be the way."

Some of the few complaints were not about traffic on the ground but traffic in the sky. Residents near the bridge complained on Twitter about noise from helicopters circling the demolition site since late Friday.

As far away as Nevada, electronic road signs warned motorists of the 405 closure.

Traffic officials and politicians said they were pleased that motorists had paid heed. But as if trying not to jinx their good fortune, they were not quite ready to declare victory.

"We're not over the hump yet," said Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky said the message had gotten through. "L.A. has risen to the occasion. They have turned 'Carmageddon' into 'Carmaheaven.' "

In its copyrighted use, Carmageddon is a violent video game that involves smashing into cars and running over pedestrians. It is unclear who first used the term to describe the threat of the 405 closure, but it went viral after Yaroslavsky invoked it at a news conference in June.

Officials said its apocalyptic connotation made clear that this was no ordinary road closure, scaring many people into staying home this weekend.

"The only way to reduce the number of cars in the system is to penetrate the consciousness of the motorists," Yaroslavsky said.

In light of the foreboding warnings, said Doug Failing, executive director of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's highway program, "it would be nice to have a little bit of congestion."

He was joking, but his point was an important one. Public officials run the risk of becoming victims of their own success. Their messages have to be strong enough to produce action but credible enough so that people — and the media — trust them the next time.

"We're going to have to be probably more creative in terms of getting the message out next time around, because there are going to be a lot of people who think, 'Ah, there's a lot to do about nothing,' " said Villaraigosa. "And frankly, they couldn't be more wrong. This is working because people are heeding the call."

The 10-mile stretch of the 405 was scheduled to be closed until 6 a.m. Monday. But officials said the partial demolition of the Mulholland Drive bridge is going so well that the freeway could reopen sooner.

Sometime next summer, transportation officials plan to demolish the other half of the bridge.

Stay tuned for "Carmageddon II."


http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-405-closure-20110717,0,4505892,full.story

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« Reply #4570 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 07:50am »

Philly.com

Posted on Sun, Jul. 17, 2011
Main Line UFO conference ponders extraterrestrial theories

Kathleen Brady Shea
Inquirer Staff Writer

While many area residents were enjoying sunny skies, about 50 people holed up in the Tredyffrin Township library Saturday to ponder theories about visitors from well beyond those skies.
Main Line MUFON (Mutual UFO Network), a division of an international nonprofit dedicated to the study of unidentified flying objects, held a free, daylong conference at the library.

Topics ranged from Sasquatch to "Credible and Convincing Evidence for the Existence of UFOs." Some participants wore MUFON T-shirts that said: "Others talk, we investigate."

One of the five speakers, Denis Denocla, said he had traveled from France to discuss his research on the Ummo people, a civilization that, he said, was likely from the Milky Way and sent letters decades ago to scientists around the world.

Denocla, author of the book Presence: UFOs, Crop Circles, and Exocivilizations, said the return addresses on the envelopes had been those of other Earth scientists, who claimed they had never sent the letters. The letters contained information that was well ahead of its time, such as the formation of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and stem-cell research, he said.

"I'll let you have your own opinion of those letters," Denocla said.

For anyone clamoring for further discussion about the unfathomable, Main Line MUFON holds monthly events; for more information, visit www.mainlinemufon.com

http://www.philly.com/philly/news/pennsylvania/125700983.html

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« Reply #4571 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 08:20am »

.





Uploaded by mirava2010 on Jul 15, 2011

Ufo Filmed By Patrol Car FOX News 7/15/2011

~

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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4572 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 1:59pm »

The video shown below is a "TED" speech by Jeff Greason of XCOR Aerospace. It is almost 16 minutes in length; however, if you can invest the time, I think it is worth watching.

http://www.wimp.com/rocketscientist/

As the shuttle era ends, and as NASA moves away from manned space activity (at least for the time being), it is gratifying and exciting to see private enterprise step up to the plate. The list of private space companies is large and growing:

ARCA
Armadillo Aerospace
Bigelow Aerospace and Boeing
Blue Origin
Copenhagen Suborbitals
EADS Astrium
Excalibur Almaz
Interorbital Systems
Kawasaki
Orbital Sciences Corp.
PlanetSpace
Reaction Engines Ltd.
Scaled Composites (The Spaceship Company)
Space Adventures and Myasishchev Design Bureau
SpaceDev
SpaceX
Starchaser Industries
Virgin Galactic
XCOR and RocketShip Tours
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4573 on: Jul 17th, 2011, 6:04pm »

on Jul 17th, 2011, 1:59pm, Swamprat wrote:
The video shown below is a "TED" speech by Jeff Greason of XCOR Aerospace. It is almost 16 minutes in length; however, if you can invest the time, I think it is worth watching.

http://www.wimp.com/rocketscientist/

As the shuttle era ends, and as NASA moves away from manned space activity (at least for the time being), it is gratifying and exciting to see private enterprise step up to the plate. The list of private space companies is large and growing:

ARCA
Armadillo Aerospace
Bigelow Aerospace and Boeing
Blue Origin
Copenhagen Suborbitals
EADS Astrium
Excalibur Almaz
Interorbital Systems
Kawasaki
Orbital Sciences Corp.
PlanetSpace
Reaction Engines Ltd.
Scaled Composites (The Spaceship Company)
Space Adventures and Myasishchev Design Bureau
SpaceDev
SpaceX
Starchaser Industries
Virgin Galactic
XCOR and RocketShip Tours


Thanks Swamp!

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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4574 on: Jul 18th, 2011, 07:03am »

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Crystal!



All the best! Enjoy your day! Hope your doggy will be well soon.

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