David Attenborough and More on Youtube!!

17 01 2010

The man himself! Sir David Attenborough.

The unparalleled naturalist David Attenborough has participated in a huge number of fantastic nature documentaries over the year, and it turns out a fair number of these are available on youtube! Having stumbled on these yesterday and spent several hours enjoying them, I felt compelled to share them with you, the public hungry for knowledge!

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE!

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Fantastic Images of Deep Sea Life

24 11 2009

A flashlight fish, one of the many denizens of the deep.

Top DTC reporter Sam alerted me this morning to a press release by the Census of Marine Life with some new photos of deep sea critters. Go to their site and have a look! The organization has lots of photos of amazing creatures, and video too!

There’s some seriously cool stuff down there.

-Neil





Leonid Meteor Shower Peaks Last Night!!

17 11 2009

An 1833 depiction of the Leonid Meteor Shower.

Thousands of you are coming here for information on the shower, but I don’t have a post up about today’s event! So here it is!

The Leonid Meteor shower occurs every year when Earth passes through the cloud of debris left behind by the passage of the comet Temple-Tuttle. Specks of dust are rapidly heated upon contact with our atmosphere and glow spectacularly for a brief moment. If you want to catch a glimpse of our brush with this cometary dust cloud, tonight is a good night. Last night was technically the peak, but since the cloud of dust is fairly large, Leonid meteors should be visible tonight and tomorrow as well. Some folks have reported some brilliant displays, so if you’re awake you may as well take a look. In any case if you decide to check out the event, just find a nice spot with a good view of as much of the sky as possible. Make sure it’s dark and free from light pollution. Then relax on your back and enjoy the show! Oh – some additional viewing tips from someone who knows his stuff:

It’s more important to orient looking away from sources of light pollution – especially the moon if it’s up. If possible, orient so these light sources are blocked from your visual field by objects in your surroundings. This will encourage your pupils to open a bit wider, and allow seeing fainter meteors. Orient toward the holes in the clouds, if any. Orient so that the place where you are lying is comfortable. Aaahhh!

Have fun and dress warm!!

-Neil

 





All Episodes of Carl Sagan’s Cosmos Are Available Online!!

30 10 2009
carl_sagan

Just look at him. As majestic as the Milky Way.

 

Holy Moley did I cry with joy when I learned this. Our friends at Hulu have put up all thirteen episodes of Carl Sagan’s magnum opus, Cosmos. If you’re unfamiliar with Cosmos, it’s an awesome series. Sagan explores a different topic each episode, outlining a particular feature of our wonderful universe with his characteristic awe and infectious enthusiasm. Stars, galaxies, the formation of the Earth? The origins of the elements, the subtleties of star death? You’ll find it here! I whole heartedly recommend you watch every single episode. Dang, it’s just so cool!
Go now! Go and be entertained and educated!

 

-Neil





Brand New Pics from Mars Recon Orbiter

6 09 2009
It's Mars!! Picture taken by the wonderful Hubble Space Telescope.

It's Mars!! Picture taken by the wonderful Hubble Space Telescope.

Wonderful new pictures of the Martian surface have been released! Taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter that is currently orbiting Mars (really?), doing reconnaissance (no way!), the pictures total over a thousand in number and show a huge variety of geological features on the red planet.

You know, we live in an amazing time. We have a machine, orbiting another planet (also known as “that red speck you see in the sky at night sometimes,” to humans of earlier times), taking photographs of its surface and transmitting them through space back to the planet of its origins, where its makers decode its transmissions and turn them into images which they can stare at and point at all night long. We sent that machine there with a monstrously huge rocket engine, and we got it to go just exactly where we wanted it to, even though our planet is moving at 107,000 km/h around the sun and Mars is traveling 86,700 km/h. That’s not to mention the orbiter’s target is 55,000,000km away from Earth at its closest approach and an astounding 400,000,000km away at its furthest. Seriously. Everyone needs to appreciate the insane technological and scientific accomplishment that this represents. Humans are truly spectacular creatures, despite all our shortcomings.

Anyway, enough of me waxing poetic. Go look at those cool pictures of another planet!!

-Neil