Posts filtered by tags: Tam[x]



It turns out that a large number of crannogs, manmade islands in Scottish lochs made by basically piling rocks in the water until you have stacked enough of them atop the pile to stick up out of the lake, date back further than expected. Given that doing amazing things with big rocks was something of a national pastime in Neolithic Britain, this is less surprising to me than it probably should be. . [Author: Tam]
Tags: Science, Guns, History, Tam, Neolithic Britain

Gaia has a pet rock.

It's not a moon, because it orbits the sun, not the earth. Well, sort of. Its orbit around the sun kind of oscillates around the earth, hence its name: , which is apparently Hawaiian for something along the lines of 'oscillating celestial object'. There are questions about its origin, whether it's a rogue asteroid that's been swept up in our gravitational orbit or what. The current prevalent theory is that it's an actual chunk of the moon knocked loose in a giant cosmic fender bender, and is ...
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, China, Gaïa, Tam, Vidjo

Sharper than Sharp

A phrase I'd heard and had found myself repeating uncritically was that regarding high-megapixel camera sensors "out-resolving" the lenses that were on them. It came to mind again recently when I saw stuff like this. That Six-Four Impala was shot with a 36MP Nikon D800 using a mid-'90s vintage Nikon 35-105mm f/3.5-4.5 AF-D lens. At first glance, it looks okay, but blow up to full screen or (worse) start pixel peeping at 100% magnification and something' The lines of the car have a bi...
Tags: Science, Guns, Sharp, Nikon, Tam, Impala, Thom Hogan, Pickcher Takin

Gibraltar Falls

Anyone who's read a bunch of Poul Anderson's "Time Patrol" stories (there's an omnibus collection, by the way) will remember the setting of "Gibraltar Falls". Apparently there are some new discoveries of sediments left from both the ancient salt flats and the flood that covered them. "The serene turquoise waters of the Mediterranean Sea hide a sharp-tasting secret: a layer of salt up to two miles thick, lurking deep underneath the basin. The ghostly white minerals are one of the few traces of ...
Tags: Books, Science, Guns, Spain, History, Gibraltar, North America, SF, Mediterranean, Anderson, Tam, Amazon River, Mediterranean Sea, Sahara, Roman Empire, Poul Anderson


I don't know if you saw Bobbi's little tensegrity structure yesterday, but it's available on Amazon. Build it yourself in a few minutes before your morning internetting! Amaze your friends! (There are more expensive and elaborate tensegrity projects, like this plant stand, but it doesn't appear very compatible with cats.) My hasty photo is not as good as Bobbi's because of depth-of-field issues. I should have used a bounced flash rather than trusting a large aperture. Even with a smallish 1...
Tags: Science, Guns, Canon, Tam, Bobbi, Neat-o, Amazon Build

Migrant Invasion

If you're in to dawn-of-civilization type history, this find from Spain is pretty interesting."Beginning in the Bronze Age, the genetic makeup of the area changed dramatically. Starting in about 2,500 B.C., genes associated with people from the steppes near the Black and Caspian seas, in what is now Russia, can be detected in the Iberin gene pool. And from about 2,500 B.C. much of the population’s DNA was replaced with that of steppe people. The “Steppe Hypothesis” holds that this group spread e...
Tags: Asia, Europe, Books, Science, Guns, Russia, Spain, History, Iberia, Tam, National Geographic Society, Vilar, Miguel Vilar, Wolves of the Dawn

Very Cool Beans

With scale applied, this photo of Ganymede becomes super wild. Those are some monster ice cubes!GANYMEDE vs EIFFEL TOWERColorized composite of highest res pics of #Jupiter's moon #Ganymede vs #EiffelTower, to scale. Pic: NASA Galileo spacecraft (1996). Res: 11m/pxl. Scene width: 3.96 km. Eiffel Tower: 325m. Ganymede's surface is a wild jumble of blocks of H2O ice & dirt.— Pascal Lee (@pascalleetweets) June 20, 2021 The science fiction nerd in me has a Traveller scena...
Tags: Games, Space, Science, Guns, Nasa, Eiffel Tower, Jupiter, SF, Tam, Ganymede, Geekery, Pascal Lee

Like Stalin said...

..."Dark humor is like food; not everybody gets it.""Ok, if it flashes blue its a boy and if it flashes pink its a girl."— Codex (@codexrau) April 23, 2021 [Author: Tam]
Tags: Science, Guns, History, Stalin, Tam, Teh Intarw3bz, T'hee


The TeeWee weatherpeople have been talking about "meteorological spring" since the first of the month, but real actual spring begins today, with the vernal equinox. Today, the sun will be in the sky for exactly...well, a little more than half the day, actually.  It's complicated. What with Indy being about as far west as you can go in the Eastern Time Zone, the sun sets at around 8PM now, and sunset just gets later and later from here, to my delight and Bobbi's chagrin. . [Author: ...
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, Nature, Tam, Equinox, Eastern Time Zone, Indy, Bobbi

Coronavirus live news: Captain Tom Moore funeral takes place; Auckland to go into lockdown for seven days

Rishi Sunak warns of risk to economy; Joe Biden tells US ‘now is not the time to relax - follow all the day’s news as it happensNew Zealand: Auckland to go into seven-day Covid lockdownNew York Covid variant reports divide officials and health expertsVan-Tam warns against giving up on Covid rulesExperts criticise Boris Johnson for putting dates in Covid roadmapSee all our coronavirus coverage 12.19pm GMT Many thousands of people have signed an online book of condolences to Captain Tom Moore....
Tags: Science, Biology, Wales, US, UK News, World news, Joe Biden, US news, Infectious Diseases, NHS, Microbiology, New Zealand, Boris Johnson, Auckland, Tam, Tom Moore

Coronavirus live news: UK will face 'enormous strains', says chancellor; New Zealand PM says Auckland to go into lockdown for seven days

Rishi Sunak warns of risk to economy; Joe Biden tells US ‘now is not the time to relax - follow all the day’s news as it happensVan-Tam warns against giving up on Covid rulesExperts criticise Boris Johnson for putting dates in Covid roadmapSee all our coronavirus coverage 8.35am GMT New Zealand’s largest city, Auckland, will enter a week-long lockdown, Jacinda Ardern has announced, after a new Covid-19 case was detected.The measures will come into effect on Sunday, the prime minister told a ...
Tags: UK, Science, Biology, US, UK News, World news, Joe Biden, US news, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology, New Zealand, Boris Johnson, Auckland, Tam, Jacinda Ardern, Rishi Sunak

Mars Needs Mic Mittens

That skycrane lowering the rover from a near hover and then blasting away on its thrusters is pretty epic, and took a lot of engineering confidence. Used also with the Curiosity rover, it's lot showier than bumping down in a ball of airbags like earlier efforts. Curiosity descent illustration from Wikipedia Lots of oohing and aahing from the network anchors about the "sounds from Mars", which is just wind blowing across a mic and normally something networks pay money for gadgets...
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, Wikipedia, Mars, SF, Hoda Kotb, Tam, Savannah Guthrie, Geekery, Vidjo

More Human Than Human

I don't know how much of this is hyperbole and how much is actually yikes-worthy: It is not clear how far Chinese military researchers have gone. They are, however, advocating use of the CRISPR gene-editing tool to enhance human capabilities, and the Communist Party's Central Military Commission is "supporting research in human performance enhancement and 'new concept' biotechnology." I mean, maybe they just want people for an exciting new life in the off-world colonies? . [Author: Tam]
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, SF, Tam, Eek, Communist Party s Central Military Commission

How things work.

At this link, you can find a neat site that explains how camera sensors and lens optics work together to make pictures. It's very informative, starting from first principles, and there are lots of sliders to manipulate for a very hands-on learning experience. Like a quality children's museum except for grownups and you don't have to worry about snotty little fingers having been all over everything. Definitely some first rate edutainment. . [Author: Tam]
Tags: Science, Guns, Tam, Neat-o, Pickcher Takin

Dinosaur Poopers

That's not a metaphor for politicians. We're talking actual fossilized dinosaur poopers. "The world’s oldest known all-purpose orifice sits in a fossil display case in the Senckenberg Natural History Museum in Frankfurt, Germany, so close to the glass that enshrines it that you can “put your face up to it, like this,” said Jakob Vinther, a paleontologist at the University of Bristol in England, holding his hand a couple inches from his nose." I saw All-Purpose Orifice open for Public Image Limit...
Tags: England, Science, Guns, Nature, University of Bristol, Public Image Limited, Tam, FRANKFURT Germany, Jakob Vinther, Senckenberg Natural History Museum

Solstice Solace

Nikon FM2N, Nikkor 50mm f/1.4, Ilford HP5 Plus Astronomically, we're putting this mess in the rear-view mirror, even if 2020 doesn't end by the calendar for another week and a half.Maybe the sky will be clear enough here in Indy tonight to get a peek at the pending celestial magic... . [Author: Tam]
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, Nikon, Blog Stuff, Tam, Ilford, Indy, Pickcher Takin, Solstice Solace

"Spinning Buzzsaw of Death!"

The hype the Black Talon generated back in the day was completely disproportionate to its actual utility as a bullet. They were good for the time, one of the first modern designs of the post-Miami gunfight era, but people absolutely lost their minds over the black Lubaloy coating, the pointy jacket petals, and of course that bellicose name.Of the original loadings, 147gr 9x19mm, 180gr .40S&W, and 230gr .45AARP, the .45 is the only one that still maintains some relevance. The 9 and .40 were almos...
Tags: Science, Guns, Miami, Tam, Ammunition, Boomsticks, My G-g-g-generation, Black Talon, Lubaloy

The Big Crunch

 Arecibo has fallen.Dennis Vazquez via Facebook: He took these pictures of the collapse of the Arecibo Observatory. You can see the debris and the remains of the platform and the Gregorian Dome.— Wilbert Andrés Ruperto (@ruperto1023) December 1, 2020 For scale, that geodesic dome structure you see under the central platform is two stories tall. [Author: Tam]
Tags: Facebook, Space, Science, News, Guns, Tam, Arecibo Observatory, Arecibo, Suckage, Gregorian Dome, Dennis Vazquez, Wilbert Andrés Ruperto

This is where we start gene splicing, right?

 Permafrost is becoming a lot less perma in many areas of the arctic, which has already led to the discovery of some well-preserved wooly mammoths. Now the thawing of long-frozen ground has unearthed a couple of well-preserved cave bear carcasses.This has allowed the species, which was formerly known only from fossils, coprolites, and steamy historical romance novels, to be seen in the flesh for the first time.Like anyone who's read a Crichton novel, my first thought was to hope that someone was...
Tags: Books, Science, Guns, History, Nature, Tam, Crichton, Neat-o

Distributed Sensors

Yet another use for the tricorders everyone carries around these days:"The University of California-Berkeley, along with funding from the state of California, built an app called "MyShake" and a cheap, effective earthquake detection network was born, at least, it was born for people who installed the app.What if you didn't need to install the app? What if earthquake detection was just built in to the operating system? That's the question Google is going to answer, with today's announcement of th...
Tags: Google, Science, Guns, California, University Of California Berkeley, Gadgetry, Tam, Geekery

Mariprofundis R'lyehianum

Just in case extracting the DNA of the ancestor of bubonic plague from the teeth of neolithic skulls doesn't trigger the final boss fight of 2020 A.D., scientists are also feeding nutrients to dormant hundred-million-year-old bacteria from the benthic mud of the abyssal plains of the ocean to wake them up and see what happens.via GIPHYThere is no way that HLV2514 is going to get here in time. . [Author: Tam]
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, History, Nature, Bad Ideas, Tam, Taxonomy of Modern Dangers

Put that back where you found it. Right now.

"Scientists and archaeologists now believe, however, that the plague bacteria, which caused the medieval Black Death that killed up to half of Europe’s population, infected humans roughly 5,000 years ago in the Stone Age. The bacteria, after it had entered the bloodstream and likely killed the host, circulated into the pulp chamber of teeth, which kept its DNA insulated from millennia of environmental wear and tear. In the past decade, scientists have been able to extract and analyze that DNA.Th...
Tags: Europe, Science, Guns, History, Bad Ideas, Jesus, Tam, University of Copenhagen, Simon Rasmussen, Eek, Conspiranoia

"So...can we have your liver, then?"

NOTE: Best viewed in full screen. Soundtrack's pretty good, too.Highlight for Spoiler: In the long run, entropy wins. . [Author: Tam]
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, Tam, Vidjo

Ten Years in an Hour

Time lapse footage of a decade's worth of images from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory. At the speed of the video, every second is a day.You can see by the end that we've entered an extremely quiet period for solar activity.In other news, our planet's magnetic field is acting wonky, but this is 2020, so nothing's really surprising. . [Author: Tam]
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, Nasa, Tam, Solar Dynamics Observatory, Vidjo

Yeah, science!

This is super cool... — Tamara K. (@TamSlick) May 28, 2020 [Author: Tam]
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, Tam, Tamara K

By Jove!

While we're on the subject of space, there are some really amazeballs photos of Jupiter here. By combining imagery from Earthbound telescopes, the Hubble up in orbit, and the Juno probe, they're finding a lot of neat stuff.For instance, check out that ring of cyclones around the planet's south pole, and the amazing Hubble shot of the Jovian aurora borealis. .  [Author: Tam]
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, Jupiter, Tam, JOVE, Neat-o

And now we wait...

Bobbi has a writeup of her adventures yesterday noonish..."I’ve got a day or three to wait before I know if this is just a dire pollen season or my own Encounter With The Virus, but it’s easier to face after what I saw on the drive-through testing line." [Author: Tam]
Tags: Science, Guns, Worry, Blog Stuff, Tam, Bobbi, Teh Intarw3bz

Tab Clearing...

Is your brain just making magenta up?"Epistemic Crisis": From my hotel room hobby of alternating nights watching Fox News and MSNBC, I agree that it is obvious that Americans don't agree on basic facts any more. It's like watching news reporting from alternate timelines. That's troubling.The original DOS version of Accolade's game Test Drive is playable in your browser. That's a lot cheaper than this vintage, unopened copy on eBay, and you don't even need a 5.25" floppy drive to play it!Buying g...
Tags: Books, Games, Science, London, Guns, Fox News, Msnbc, Tam, Jane Jacobs, Neat-o, Geekery, Preparedness, Bread And Circuses, My G-g-g-generation, The Fix Is In

Ad Astra...

Another piece of the future dropped into place today... . [Author: Tam]
Tags: Space, Science, News, Guns, Tam, Neat-o, Vidjo

Social media helps you connect.

If you're into shooting, social media can help you connect with other people who are into shooting. If you're into Japanese funny books, social media can help you connect with other people who are into Japanese funny books. If you're a furry, social media can help you find other furries.And if you're a credulous moron, social media can hook you up with other credulous morons:"And Davidson quickly found a large online community believing the same thing. "I thought doing a conference would just ta...
Tags: Space, Science, Guns, Earth, Antarctica, Tam, Davidson, Great Plains, Idjits, Mockery

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