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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: Stuff & Nonsense  (Read 92968 times)
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« Reply #4860 on: Aug 24th, 2011, 11:48am »

Russian Space Ship Fails to Reach Orbit

Published August 24, 2011
| Associated Press

MOSCOW – An unmanned Russian supply ship bound for the International Space Station failed to reach its planned orbit Wednesday, and pieces of it fell in Siberia amid a thunderous explosion, officials said.

A brief statement from Roscosmos, Russia's space agency, did not specify whether the Progress supply ship that was launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan had been lost. But the state news agency RIA Novosti quoted Alexander Borisov, head of a the Choisky region in Russia's Altai province, as saying pieces of the craft fell in his area some 900 miles northeast of the launch site.

"The explosion was so strong that for 60 miles glass almost flew out of the windows," he was quoted as saying. Borisov said there were no immediate reports of casualties.

The Russian Emergencies Ministry could not be reached for comment. A Roscosmos media officer who refused to be identified said the agency had no immediate comment.

Roscosmos said the third stage of the rocket firing the ship into space failed at 325 seconds into the launch. The ship was carrying more than 2.5 tons of supplies, including oxygen, food and fuel. Since the ending of the U.S. space shuttle program this summer, Russian spaceships are a main supply link to the space station. It was the 44th Progress to launch to the International Space Station.

Roscosmos said the accident "would have no negative influence" on the International Space Station crew because its existing supplies of food, water and oxygen are sufficient.


Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/08/24/russian-space-ship-fails-to-reach-orbit/#ixzz1VxszGF73
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« Reply #4861 on: Aug 24th, 2011, 11:51am »

on Aug 24th, 2011, 11:48am, Swamprat wrote:
Russian Space Ship Fails to Reach Orbit

Published August 24, 2011
| Associated Press

MOSCOW – An unmanned Russian supply ship bound for the International Space Station failed to reach its planned orbit Wednesday, and pieces of it fell in Siberia amid a thunderous explosion, officials said.

A brief statement from Roscosmos, Russia's space agency, did not specify whether the Progress supply ship that was launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan had been lost. But the state news agency RIA Novosti quoted Alexander Borisov, head of a the Choisky region in Russia's Altai province, as saying pieces of the craft fell in his area some 900 miles northeast of the launch site.

"The explosion was so strong that for 60 miles glass almost flew out of the windows," he was quoted as saying. Borisov said there were no immediate reports of casualties.

The Russian Emergencies Ministry could not be reached for comment. A Roscosmos media officer who refused to be identified said the agency had no immediate comment.

Roscosmos said the third stage of the rocket firing the ship into space failed at 325 seconds into the launch. The ship was carrying more than 2.5 tons of supplies, including oxygen, food and fuel. Since the ending of the U.S. space shuttle program this summer, Russian spaceships are a main supply link to the space station. It was the 44th Progress to launch to the International Space Station.

Roscosmos said the accident "would have no negative influence" on the International Space Station crew because its existing supplies of food, water and oxygen are sufficient.


Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/08/24/russian-space-ship-fails-to-reach-orbit/#ixzz1VxszGF73


That isn't a very auspicious beginning.

Good morning Swamprat! grin

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« Reply #4862 on: Aug 24th, 2011, 11:55am »

Wired Danger Room

Libyan Rebels Are Flying Their Own Minidrone
By Spencer Ackerman
August 23, 2011 | 1:08 pm
Categories: Drones





The Libyan revolutionaries are more of a band of enthusiastic amateurs than experienced soldiers. But it turns out the rebels have the kind of weaponry usually possessed by advanced militaries: their very own drone.

Aeryon Labs, a Canadian defense firm, revealed on Tuesday that it had quietly provided the rebel forces with a teeny, tiny surveillance drone, called the Aeryon Scout. Small enough to fit into a backpack, the 3-pound, four-rotor robot gave Libyan forces eyes in the sky independent of the Predators, Fire Scout surveillance copters and manned spy planes that NATO flew overhead. Don’t worry, it’s not armed.

So far, the rebels have just one Scout among them, according to Marni McVicar, Aeryon’s vice president for business development. Working with a Canadian private security company called Zariba, Aeryon delivered the Scout “several weeks” ago to rebels in the Western port city of Misurata who used it, according to McVicar, to hasten their surprisingly rapid march to Tripoli.

The rebels needed barely a day of training to use a technology that many national armies would love to acquire. “We like to joke that it’s designed for people who are not that bright, have fat fingers and break things,” McVicar told Danger Room in a phone interview.

Listening to McVicar’s description, the Aeryon Scout sounds user-friendly enough to be operated by the car dealers, medical students and teachers who formed the impromptu Libyan rebel army in the west. Unlike many minidrones, the Scout isn’t controlled by a joystick. It’s run by a touchscreen tablet powered by Windows XP. The interface divides the screen among imagery (still or video) that the drone collects and displays in real time, a control dashboard and a programmable map of the area to fly over.

“You simply press on the screen and that’s where the vehicle goes,” McVicar said. “Press where you want the camera to focus on, and you’re done.”

It also gives the rebels another advantage that lots of armies desire: night vision. A thermal-imagery camera aboard the Scout provides an alternative to night-vision goggles, and from arguably a better vantage point. In the video above, released by Aeryon on Tuesday, nighttime images of Libyan artillery positions come into view from the Scout.

McVicar wouldn’t say how much the Libyan rebels paid for the drone. But she noted when asked that the drone retails for $100,000.

How the rebels even got the drone is fascinating as well. Representatives of Libya’s rebel government checked out demos of the Scout in Ottawa, Ontario, a few months ago. They were frustrated with not being able to see the aerial imagery NATO collected from its satellites, spy planes and drones, and wanted their own flying robots — although it’s been reported that NATO has coordinated surveillance with the rebels ahead of the Tripoli offensive. Some rebels had even taken to strapping cameras onto model airplanes. After being impressed with the Scout, the Transitional National Council decided it wanted something a bit more professional.

So a Canadian military vet, Charles Barlow, brought it personally into Misurata. Armed with a Canadian export license and the backpack-sized Scout, Barlow boarded a retrofitted tuna boat at Malta that was used to send humanitarian aid to Misurata despite NATO’s maritime blockade in late July. As far as Barlow is aware, Canada licensed the drone for sale to the Libyan rebels, but NATO didn’t know that the boat carried it into port, even after multiple hailings by NATO vessels.

Barlow, who runs a Canadian private-security firm called the Zariba Security Corporation, told Danger Room that he spent only about 24 hours teaching Misurata’s rebels how to use the Scout. On the bombed-out airfield near the port, Barlow launched about 10 test flights while Gadhafi’s artillery crashed down only a few miles away.

There was also little doubt about where the Libyan rebels wanted to use it. “The only imagery they wanted loaded on was Misurata to Tripoli, on that coastal road,” Barlow said. “I can’t hand-on-heart tell you it’s in Tripoli, but this was the main front out of Misurata.”

As Paul McLeary at Ares notes, the arrival of drone technology — even in micromachine form — to a band of rebels is yet another example of the rapid proliferation of unmanned vehicles away from the control of powerful state militaries. It was a big deal in 2005 when Hezbollah flew Iranian surveillance drones into Israel. “It’s certainly not the last time a nonstate actor gets its hands on this kind of technology,” McLeary writes.

So did its role in drone proliferation trouble Aeryon? “That was an issue,” McVicar conceded. “The company we work with, Zariba, had vetted this through our [Canadian] government. They got the OK to go ahead.”

Barlow hopes that the men to whom he sold the drone end up in charge in Libya. “I’ve been to warzones, I’m ex-military, I’ve been Afghanistan, Bosnia, Lebanon — but I’ve never seen people who had to fight or else. These guys fighting were not soldiers,” Barlow said, impressed. “I can hope the people who did the fighting are the people who take over. They’re wonderful guys.”

http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2011/08/libyan-rebels-are-flying-their-own-mini-drone/

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« Reply #4863 on: Aug 24th, 2011, 12:14pm »

Telegraph





The GB Men's Eight rowing team show off their technique on a moving walkway at Munich Airport.

3:41PM BST 24 Aug 2011

Sitting in a line on the moving walkway, the team stiffle laughs as they mime rowing in unison, giving the illusion of propelling themselves along the airport corridor.

The rowing team pulled the stunt on their way to the 2011 World Championships in Bled, Slovenia, which will also double as a qualifying regatta for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The GB squad is fielding boats in all the Olympic classes - five women's, three lightweight and six men's and three of the four Paralympic classes. At the last World Championships they took four golds, four silvers and a bronze.

Footage of stunt was posted online by rower Nathaniel Reilly O'Donnell who is keeping a video blog of his preparations for the 2012 Olympics.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/olympics/rowing/8720323/GB-rowing-team-practice-moves-at-airport.html

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« Reply #4864 on: Aug 24th, 2011, 12:22pm »

Reuters


Plant and animal species on Earth estimated to be home to just under 9 million species.

By David Fogarty
SINGAPORE | Wed Aug 24, 2011 12:27pm EDT

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Scientists have yet to discover, or classify, about 90 percent of the plant and animal species on Earth, which is estimated to be home to just under 9 million species, a study says.

The study, published in the open-access journal PLoS Biology on Wednesday, vastly increases the estimated richness of life on the planet. More than 1.2 million species have been formally described and named so far.

Scientists have long tried to classify life on Earth and to finally figure out how many species there are but estimates have varied wildly from 3 million to 100 million.

The quest is no mere scientific fancy. Humans derive huge benefits from the richness of life on the planet, from foods to medicines, to clean air and water. Knowing how many species there are and taking steps to ramp up the search and description could lead to more discoveries that benefit mankind.

The recent surge in extinction rates only made the quest more urgent, the scientists said.

"With the clock of extinction now ticking faster for many species, I believe speeding the inventory of Earth's species merits high scientific and societal priority," said Camilo Mora of the University of Hawaii and Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada, who led the study.

Some U.N. studies say the world is facing the worst losses since the dinosaurs vanished 65 million years ago.

Species are classified according to a 250-year-old taxonomy system. This groups life into a pyramid-like hierarchy, with species at the base, then genus, family, order, class, phylum, kingdom and domain.

PATTERNS

Mora and team studied existing species databases and taxonomic data. They wanted to see if there were numerical patterns in the rankings, working on the assumption the higher taxonomic categories, meaning those at the top of the pyramid, are much more completely described than those as the bottom.

They examined well-known groups and found the relative numbers of species assigned to phylum, class, order, family and genus follow consistent patterns.

Applying this pattern to less well-studied groups could yield a reasonable estimate of total species numbers.

The result was 6.5 million species on land and 2.2 million in the ocean depths. The study had a error margin of 1.3 million in total.

The results suggested 86 percent of existing species on land and 91 percent of species in the ocean still await description, the scientists concluded.

"The diversity of life is one of the most striking aspects of our planet," the scientists say in the study. "Hence knowing how many species inhabit Earth is among the most fundamental questions in science. Yet the answer to this question remains enigmatic."

Writing in an accompanying commentary to the research, Robert May of the Zoology Department at Oxford University lamented the rapid rate of species loss, due to land clearing, pollution, climate change and other factors.

"It is a remarkable testament to humanity's narcissism that we know the number of books in the U.S. Library of Congress on 1 February 2011 was 22,194,656," wrote May, until recently the president of The Royal Society.

But it was remarkable that science "cannot tell you to within an order-of-magnitude how many distinct species of plants and animals we share our world with," he added.

(Editing by Miral Fahmy)

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/08/24/us-science-species-idUSTRE77N20O20110824

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« Reply #4865 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 08:19am »

Yahoo

New Information About The Case To Be Discussed Publicly For The First Time

Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) August 25, 2011

Since 2003, Derek Bartholomaus has been researching the various extra-terrestrial contact claims made by Swiss farmer, Eduard Albert “Billy” Meier, with a skeptical, and critical, eye. His research has now been collected onto a new website: The Billy Meier UFO Case: http://www.BillyMeierUFOCase.com Derek is going to be discussing his research as part of the Skeptics Track at Dragon*Con 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia this coming Labor Day weekend.


Dragon*Con is the largest multi-media, popular culture convention focusing on science fiction and fantasy, gaming, comics, literature, art, music, and film in the universe! SkepTrack is a complement of live entertainment and discussion panels for the legions of free thinkers, science enthusiasts and skeptics helping to put the Science in Science Fiction at Dragon*Con.


On Friday, September 2, 2011 at 5:30 PM in Hilton Hotel Meeting Room 205/206/207, Derek Bartholomaus will be presenting an overview of his involvement in the Billy Meier UFO Case. Throughout the years claims have been made by Billy Meier, and his supporters, that Derek has successfully shown to be inaccurate. For example, Meier claims to have predicted an accident at a nuclear power station in France in 2003 that shut down the reactor. Derek was able to show that, not only was there no accident at the power station, the reactor was not shut down.


One of the highlights that will be discussed at Dragon*Con concerns the work conducted by Phil Langdon, from the United Kingdom, who has been able to successfully recreate all of the various Billy Meier photographs and movies. His reproduction work is so accurate that it also finally answered a thirty-year-old question about the case. This answer, and much more, will be discussed at Dragon*Con 2011 on Friday, September 2 at 5:30 PM in Hilton Hotel Meeting Room 205/206/207 in Atlanta, Georgia.


The Billy Meier UFO Case is the home of the research conducted by Derek Bartholomaus into the alleged extra-terrestrial contacts of Eduard Albert “Billy” Meier. Visit our website at http://www.BillyMeierUFOCase.com or call (323) 364-2596.


###


Derek Bartholomaus
Billy Meier UFO Case
(323) 364-2596
Email Information


http://news.yahoo.com/learn-billy-meier-ufo-case-dragon-con-2011-071752704.html

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« Reply #4866 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 12:17pm »

Reuters

Hoax sign warns Arizona drivers of panda rampage
25 August 2011

PHOENIX (Reuters) – A wave of "panda-monium" has swept through a northern Arizona city thanks to a mischievous street sign hacker who warned motorists of a "ROGUE PANDA ON RAMPAGE."

State transportation officials said Tuesday that a person was able to post the hoax warning by hacking into an electronic message board in Flagstaff, Arizona, over the weekend.

Rest easy, though. Authorities said the city is safe from pandas, if not from jokesters.

Officials said the message board alerting drivers to street improvements near a busy city intersection was probably altered late on Sunday or early on Monday. It was fixed by 11 a.m. local time on Monday.

"Someone had to know what they were doing to go in and change the message," said Mackenzie Kirby, an Arizona Department of Transportation spokeswoman. "It's not easy."

Kirby joked that there had been no sightings of any rogue pandas in the community, but she has been sent several photoshopped images via email of the cuddly creatures tooled up for trouble.

In one picture, a panda is holding a machete. In another, it is toting a rifle.

"We're all getting a laugh out of this to be sure," she said.

(Reporting by David Schwartz; Editing by Tim Gaynor and Cynthia Johnston)


http://www.reuters.com/

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« Reply #4867 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 12:23pm »

Geeky Gadgets

Lightning Motorcycle Is The World’s Fastest Electric Motorcycle (Video)
By Roland Hutchinson
Thursday 25th August 2011 1:02 pm
Gadgets, Technology News

We have featured a number of different electric vehicles here at Geeky Gadgets, the latest one is the Lightning Motorcycle, which has set a new land speed record and is the first electric motorcycle to reach speeds over 200mph.

The Lightning Motorcycle reached an average speed for 215.960 mph and a top speed of 218.637 mph, and you can see it in action in the video below.





Thats a pretty impressive speed for a motorcycle, never mind an electric one, and it is powered by a Remy HVH520 electric propulsion motor and an Ener1 battery pack.

http://www.geeky-gadgets.com/lightning-motorcycle-is-the-worlds-fastest-electric-motorcycle-video-25-08-2011/

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« Reply #4868 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 12:34pm »

Phantoms and Monsters

Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Alma: Asian Wildman

The Alma is a creature reported to be of ape-like appearance that inhabits the mountains in central Asia. Although not as well known as the Yeti and Bigfoot, the descriptions of the Alma suggest that it is a creature more akin to a hairy human than an ape. Physical traits and/or demeanor also seem to be more human-like. I have posted a few narratives referencing encounters with creatures with these descriptions. Though some of the locals and investigators refer to these hominids as a 'Yeti or Bigfoot', there is some evidence to suggest that there is a possible human connection.

Russian novelist Ivan Turgenev met someone that he described as a troglodyte. The horror of the encounter remained in his mind throughout his entire life. Years later, he told the story to one of his French friends, Guy de Maupassant, who wrote:

"I remember a story that Turgenev told us. He was hunting in a Russian forest. He was wandering the whole day and in the evening he went out to a bank of a quiet river. The river was flowing in the shadow of trees, the water there was crystal pure and cold. Turgenev was gripped with a desire to swim in that water.

He took his clothes off and jumped in the river. He was a tall, strong, well-built man, and he was a very good swimmer too. He was enjoying the current of the river with his body and soul. Grass and aquatic plants were caressing him.

Suddenly, someone's hand touched his shoulder. He looked around quickly and saw a strange creature. The creature was gazing at him with great curiosity. It looked like something in between a woman and a monkey. The creature had a wrinkled face of a monkey. Messy red hair was framing the face and flowing behind the back...."


more after the jump
http://naturalplane.blogspot.com/

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« Reply #4869 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 12:36pm »

.


Please be an angel


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http://www.soldiersangels.org/




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« Reply #4870 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 3:22pm »

Dog mourns at casket of fallen Navy SEAL


http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/44271018/ns/today-today_pets_and_animals/t/dog-mourns-casket-fallen-navy-seal/ - .TlarZl3HSsp
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« Reply #4871 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 4:41pm »

on Aug 25th, 2011, 3:22pm, Swamprat wrote:
Dog mourns at casket of fallen Navy SEAL


http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/44271018/ns/today-today_pets_and_animals/t/dog-mourns-casket-fallen-navy-seal/ - .TlarZl3HSsp


That breaks your heart.

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« Reply #4872 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 4:55pm »

.


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Funeral of Navy SEAL Jon Tumilson. The Labrador Retriever is his friend Hawkeye.
photo by Lisa Pembleton





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« Reply #4873 on: Aug 25th, 2011, 5:06pm »

.






Uploaded by spadawah on Apr 20, 2011

Follow Emmitt Thunderpaws on Twitter! http://twitter.com/#!/E_Thunderpaws or be his friend on Facebook! http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=100000795920865 After a long 9 months apart, Emmitt Thunderpaws is REALLY HAPPY to see his favorite person again! He smelled him in the house and then ran outside to greet him. We've taught Emmitt never to jump on anyone and we don't let him stand on our shoulders because it's bad for his hips, so this is quite out of character for him. He almost seems like he's in shock as he's not crying, barking, or even licking! Just holding onto Trevor and staring him in the eyes as if he can't believe he's back. Dogs are awesome smiley

~

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« Reply #4874 on: Aug 26th, 2011, 07:07am »

Sorry, it's too big to fit on your finger...... grin


ScienceDaily

Pulsar Transformed Into Small Planet Made of Diamond Discovered in Milky Way


ScienceDaily (Aug. 25, 2011) — A once-massive star that's been transformed into a small planet made of diamond: that's what astronomers think they've found in our Milky Way.

The discovery, reported in Science, was made by an international research team led by Professor Matthew Bailes, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research) at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne and the 'Dynamic Universe' theme leader in a new wide-field astronomy initiative, the ARC Centre of Excellence for All-sky Astrophysics (CAASTRO).

The researchers, from Australia, Germany, Italy, the UK and the USA, first detected an unusual star called a pulsar using the CSIRO Parkes radio telescope and followed up their discovery with the Lovell radio telescope in the UK and one of the Keck telescopes in Hawaii.

Pulsars are small spinning stars about 20 km in diameter -- the size of a small city -- that emit a beam of radio waves. As the star spins and the radio beam sweeps repeatedly over Earth, radio telescopes detect a regular pattern of radio pulses.

For the newly discovered pulsar, known as PSR J1719-1438, the astronomers noticed that the arrival times of the pulses were systematically modulated. They concluded that this was due to the gravitational pull of a small companion planet, orbiting the pulsar in a binary system.

The pulsar and its planet are part of the Milky Way's plane of stars and lie 4,000 light-years away in the constellation of Serpens (the Snake). The system is about an eighth of the way towards the Galactic Centre from Earth.

The modulations in the radio pulses tell astronomers several things about the planet.

First, it orbits the pulsar in just two hours and ten minutes, and the distance between the two objects is 600,000 km -- a little less than the radius of our Sun.

Second, the companion must be small, less than 60,000 km (that's about five times Earth's diameter). The planet is so close to the pulsar that, if it were any bigger, it would be ripped apart by the pulsar's gravity.

But despite its small size, the planet has slightly more mass than Jupiter.

"This high density of the planet provides a clue to its origin," said Professor Bailes.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110825141632.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sciencedaily%2Fspace_time%2Fextrasolar_planets+%28ScienceDaily%3A+Space+%26+Time+News+--+Extrasolar+Planets%29
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