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Oct. 25th, 2014 05:48 am
twistedchick: (Default)
[personal profile] twistedchick
It's 5:48 a.m., and I'm absolutely awake.

I've watched the sun come up for two weeks. My body seems to be trying to move back to the medieval version of sleep that is divided into two sleep periods with a waking one in between -- except that the second one is anywhere throughout the day.

The SU made a wonderful coffeecake for dessert last night, something with chocolate and cinnamon and just enough crunch. He doesn't bake anywhere near enough (though his baking is so good that it's probably a good thing for my waistline that he doesn't.)

Attempting to reset my sleep cycle.

Oct. 25th, 2014 08:40 pm
vass: Tosh trying to sleep, her brow furrowed (Sleep Now?)
[personal profile] vass
Going to bed now.

See you all tomorrow.

Redesigning the space sick bag

Oct. 25th, 2014 05:10 am
hatman: "Cultral Icon" (Image of a petri dish) (Cultural Icon)
[personal profile] hatman
I was at a talk by Col. Chris Hadfield when he mentioned a problem with space sick bags. He said that when you use a space sick bag, without the force of gravity to hold what's come up down, it has a tendency to bounce off the bottom of the bag and float back to the top. Not ideal.

I was thinking about that while trying to get back to sleep last night, and I realized that the solution might be to redesign the shape of the bag. If you were to indent the bottom of the bag (with, say, a v-shape), anything bouncing off it would be reflected not directly back at you but off to the side.

Of course, it could still ricochet off the side of the bag and come back to you. To discourage that, you'd want to taper the sides in. Make the bag more triangular.

Doing that, however, still has its disadvantages. Without gravity, up and down are arbitrary. A bag which tapers out from the top, considered upside-down, is a funnel. To prevent that, you'd want a shoulder at the top. Or, better yet, a tube going partway in. (You need a valve to close it off anyway, right? If you make that tube a little longer, you're fine.)

But then... a triangle with a notch cut out of the bottom seems familiar. And, come to think, having that notch be asymmetrical could have some advantages. And, really, why not have fun with it if you can?

I present to you what, to the best of my late-night figurings, is honestly the ideal shape for a space sick bag:

The Starfleet logo.

It'd cost a little more to manufacture, but it just might be worth it.

(I sent a copy of this, without the crude diagrams, to NASA. It'll be a couple of weeks before they can reply, but I'm interested to hear what they make of it.)


Oct. 25th, 2014 05:24 am
dglenn: Me in kilt and poofy shirt, facing away, playing acoustic guitar behind head (Default)
[personal profile] dglenn

"I thought 'eureka' was Greek for 'the bath water is too hot.'" -- lots of people apparently, based on skimming Google hits for the phrase, but most recently by Mephistopheles O'Brien, commeter at Respectful Insolence, as recently noted by [info] realinterrobang

Elementary 1x10 Leviathan

Oct. 25th, 2014 08:10 pm
kerravonsen: Sydney with VR glasses on: "Lost in cyberspace" (lost-in-cyberspace)
[personal profile] kerravonsen
I enjoyed this episode, it was action-packed, clever, with character stuff too.

Unfortunately, something about the plot-logic has been bothering me, something that most people wouldn't notice at all, but, alas, it is my profession. Something to do with the computer programming. Mind you, the writers get double kudos for (a) avoiding Obvious Computer Fail, which very few shows do, and (b) making the computer stuff something that bugged me afterwards, rather than during. So I'm not exactly complaining... it's just a puzzle that I needed to work out.
spoilers SPOILERS and possibly TMI )

Saturday 25/10/2014

Oct. 25th, 2014 10:47 am
lhune: (3L)
[personal profile] lhune posting in [community profile] 3_good_things_a_day
1) A croissant and Darjeeling tea for breakfast.

2) This afternoon I'm going over to [personal profile] dark_kana  ^_^

3) And I'm staying for dinner. 

Planes Today

Oct. 25th, 2014 10:36 am
hagar_972: A group of people, backlist, over the prop of an rc plane (Planes (people))
[personal profile] hagar_972
So planes today was awesome.

My dad changed a prop on my plane. This one's 2" longer (and I wore the only one 0.5" shorter than it was supposed to be, he tells me) and has a wider step. That means it generates more propulsion at less rpm - a lot less rpm.

It also makes the plane more stable, which I notice about as soon as it disengaged from the ground the first time today. The extra force is noticeable, too - it maintains cruise at what used to be gliding speed.

If you think I came in to land grass-low and near-stall-slow, you're completely correct. Discovering just how slow I can make it (haven't pushed all the way on altitude yet) and from how far was fun. It also means really finicky aboveground handling at the last few meters, but I got that now - wind days are good for that.

Present today: SH, ID, DR, IS and ZP who only shows up rarely. ZP is adorb and also he hasn't seen me fly in forever, so that was a lot of smiles. IS is still a hazard, ID still hasn't learned to do maintenance and SH's arthritis is still horrible.

Clocked in about an hour net of flight-time again.
sporky_rat: Torches outside the Bulgarian Communist Headquarters. (post from the ether)
[personal profile] sporky_rat
via http://ift.tt/1yx9K4N at October 25, 2014 at 03:00AM:

I really like this gif because Stitch does that little squinty thing that animals do when they’re really happy and relaxed and you can tell that he’s having such a superb time playing that little ukulele
[syndicated profile] wdtprs_feed

Posted by frz@wdtprs.com (Fr. John Zuhlsdorf)

Not good news from info wars.

Ebola can go airborne but hasn’t in West Africa because it’s too warm, researchers conclude

Ebola can spread by air in cold, dry weather common to the U.S. but not West Africa, presenting a “possible, serious threat” to the public, according to two studies by U.S. Army scientists.

After successfully exposing monkeys to airborne Ebola, which “caused a rapidly fatal disease in 4-5 days,” scientists with the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) concluded Ebola can spread through air but likely hasn’t in Equatorial Africa because the region is too warm, with temperatures rarely dropping below 65°F.

“We… demonstrated aerosol transmission of Ebola virus at lower temperature and humidity than that normally present in sub-Saharan Africa,” the 1995 study entitled Lethal Experimental Infections of Rhesus Monkeys by Aerosolized Ebola Virus reported. “Ebola virus sensitivity to the high temperatures and humidity in the thatched, mud, and wattle huts shared by infected family members in southern Sudan and northern Zaire may have been a factor limiting aerosol transmission of Ebola virus in the African epidemics.”

“Both elevated temperature and relative humidity have been shown to reduce the aerosol stability of viruses.”

The study also referred to the 1989 Ebola outbreak at a primate quarantine facility in Reston, Va., in which the virus rapidly spread between unconnected rooms.

“While infections in adjacent cages may have occurred by droplet contact, infections in distant cages suggests aerosol transmission, as evidence of direct physical contact with an infected source could not be established,” the study added.

It is interesting to note this outbreak occurred in December 1989, when temperatures in Reston were usually below freezing, and it’s unlikely the indoor temperature in the vast quarantine facility was much higher.

A 2012 study also by the USAMRIID, which exposed monkeys to an airborne filovirus similar to Ebola, reached a similar conclusion to the 1995 study.

“There is no strong evidence of secondary transmission by the aerosol route in African filovirus outbreaks; however, aerosol transmission is thought to be possible and may occur in conditions of lower temperature and humidity which may not have been factors in outbreaks in warmer climates,” the study entitled A Characterization of Aerosolized Sudan Virus Infection in African Green Monkeys, Cynomologus Macaques and Rhesus Macaques stated.

The study pointed out that filoviruses, which include Ebola and the Sudan virus used in this particular study, have stability in aerosol form comparable to influenza.

“Filoviruses in aerosol form are therefore considered a possible, serious threat to the health and safety of the public,” it added.

And the Pentagon took this threat of airborne filoviruses so seriously that it organized a Filovirus Medical Countermeasures Workshop with the Department of Health and Human Services in 2013.

“The DoD seeks a trivalent filovirus vaccine that is effective against aerosol exposure and protective against filovirus disease for at least one year,” the executive summary of the workshop stated.

The Pentagon’s concern with airborne Ebola runs contrary to health officials who claim the disease can’t spread through coughing and sneezing, but according to the Army studies, that may only be true in tropical climates.

“How much airborne transmission will occur will be a function of how well Ebola induces coughing and sneezing in its victims in cold weather climates,” the web site potrblog.com suggested. “Coughing and nasal bleeding are both reported symptoms in Africa, so the worst should be expected.”

More there.

If we do not ask for miracles, God will not grant them.


Be an intercessor.

Ask God to avert this terrible disease and the consequences it will bring.

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The post USArmy: Ebola virus can go airborne in low temperatures appeared first on Fr. Z's Blog.

sporky_rat: Torches outside the Bulgarian Communist Headquarters. (post from the ether)
[personal profile] sporky_rat
via http://ift.tt/1DKL4bO at October 25, 2014 at 02:00AM:




This is the cutest thing I’ve seen ever

He totally thought wednesday could lift him i’m dead

Honestly she probably could have.

The Addamses may well be the healthiest, most functional family unit to ever grace the small screen.
andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Default)
[personal profile] andraste
I started writing this as a Treat for Yuletide 2013. It, uh, took a while to get finished.

RPF is not generally my thing, but I make an exception for stories about the MythBusters fighting zombies, exploring space ... or, apparently, defeating aliens with giant robots.

Why We Can Never Have Anything Nice (2456 words) by Andraste
Fandom: MythBusters RPF
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: Author Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Characters: Grant Imahara, Tory Belleci, Kari Byron, Adam Savage, Jamie Hyneman
Additional Tags: Alternate Universe - Mecha

Grant Imahara saves the world just like his friends. It's just that his saving mostly involves a socket wrench.

October 25, 1881: Pablo Picasso born

Oct. 25th, 2014 12:00 am
[syndicated profile] this_day_in_history_feed

Pablo Picasso, one of the greatest and most influential artists of the 20th century, is born in Malaga, Spain.

Picasso's father was a professor of drawing, and he bred his son for a career in academic art. Picasso had his first exhibit at age 13 and later quit art school so he could experiment full-time with modern art styles. He went to Paris for the first time in 1900, and in 1901 was given an exhibition at a gallery on Paris' rue Lafitte, a street known for its prestigious art galleries. The precocious 19-year-old Spaniard was at the time a relative unknown outside Barcelona, but he had already produced hundreds of paintings. Winning favorable reviews, he stayed in Paris for the rest of the year and later returned to the city to settle permanently.

The work of Picasso, which comprises more than 50,000 paintings, drawings, engravings, sculptures, and ceramics produced over 80 years, is described in a series of overlapping periods. His first notable period--the "blue period"—began shortly after his first Paris exhibit. In works such as The Old Guitarist (1903), Picasso painted in blue tones to evoke the melancholy world of the poor. The blue period was followed by the "rose period," in which he often depicted circus scenes, and then by Picasso's early work in sculpture. In 1907, Picasso painted the groundbreaking work Les Demoiselles d'Avignon, which, with its fragmented and distorted representation of the human form, broke from previous European art. Les Demoiselles d'Avignon demonstrated the influence on Picasso of both African mask art and Paul Cezanne and is seen as a forerunner of the Cubist movement, founded by Picasso and the French painter Georges Braque in 1909.

In Cubism, which is divided into two phases, analytical and synthetic, Picasso and Braque established the modern principle that artwork need not represent reality to have artistic value. Major Cubist works by Picasso included his costumes and sets for Sergey Diaghilev's Ballets Russes (1917) and The Three Musicians (1921). Picasso and Braque's Cubist experiments also resulted in the invention of several new artistic techniques, including collage.

After Cubism, Picasso explored classical and Mediterranean themes, and images of violence and anguish increasingly appeared in his work. In 1937, this trend culminated in the masterpiece Guernica, a monumental work that evoked the horror and suffering endured by the Basque town of Guernica when it was destroyed by German war planes during the Spanish Civil War. Picasso remained in Paris during the Nazi occupation but was fervently opposed to fascism and after the war joined the French Communist Party.

Picasso's work after World War II is less studied than his earlier creations, but he continued to work feverishly and enjoyed commercial and critical success. He produced fantastical works, experimented with ceramics, and painted variations on the works of other masters in the history of art. Known for his intense gaze and domineering personality, he had a series of intense and overlapping love affairs in his lifetime. He continued to produce art with undiminished force until his death in 1973 at the age of 91.

[syndicated profile] wdtprs_feed

Posted by frz@wdtprs.com (Fr. John Zuhlsdorf)

This First Things piece is a must.  It has many good points, so I urge you also to visit First Things and explore their combox, once some discussion gets underway there as well.


Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Philadelphia spoke a prophetic word on Monday night at the 2014 Erasmus Lecture in New York. Actually, he spoke several prophetic words. The most powerful, the one that bears mentioning before I turn to the one that immediately concerns us here, was about our duty to the poor:

If we ignore the poor, we will go to hell. If we blind ourselves to their suffering, we will go to hell. If we do nothing to ease their burdens; then we will go to hell. Ignoring the needs of the poor among us is the surest way to dig a chasm of heartlessness between ourselves and God, and ourselves and our neighbors. [Pretty clear.]

This searing spiritual challenge was the heart of Chaput’s talk, but because our press is less concerned with the poor’s suffering than the rich’s interminable debates over sex, these words weren’t highlighted. Instead, attention centered on Chaput’s comments on the recent Synod on the Family in Rome.

David Gibson of Religion News Service [which to me seems rarely to read events in the Church with an objective stance] wrote an article that suggested Chaput had denounced the Synod in unequivocal terms as “of the devil.” The headline, likely not picked by Gibson but certainly reflecting the tone of his article, said that Chaput had “blasted” the Synod.

In fact, Chaput denounced its public image while saying he would need to hear more from his brother bishops who actually attended before forming a firm opinion. As I told David O’Reilly of the Philadelphia Inquirer, there was no criticism of Pope Francis. Chaput did, however, offer the deliciously prophetic warning alluded to at the beginning of this post. His words?

“To get your information from the press is a mistake.” [This is also why I think the Catholic blogosphere, though flawed and limited, is vital, now more than ever.  We have an alternate information stream.] 

* * *

Below is the full text of Chaput’s remarks on the Synod (watch the videhere; relevant portion begins at 56:00).

Audience member: Thank you for your splendid lecture. I would be very grateful for your comments on the recent Synod on the Family in Rome.

Chaput: Well, first of all, I wasn’t there. That’s very significant, because to claim you know what really happened when you weren’t there is foolish. To get your information from the press is a mistake because they don’t know well enough how to understand it so they can tell people what happened. I don’t think the press deliberately distorts, they just don’t have any background to be able to evaluate things. In some cases they’re certainly the enemy and they want to distort the Church.

Now, having said all that, I was very disturbed by what happened. I think confusion is of the devil, and I think the public image that came across was of confusion. Now, I don’t think that was the real thing there. I’m anxious to hear from Bishop Kurtz. Bishop Kurtz and the Byzantine bishop of Pittsburgh were the two Americans who were our delegates there. Cardinal Dolan was there and Cardinal Wuerl because they’re part of the organization body of the Synod. But every country’s president of the bishop’s conference attended, and then they have representatives from the Eastern Church. That’s why Bishop Skurla was there from Pittsburgh.

I want to hear from them. Then you can ask me the question and I can give you a better answer. Now, I read about it in the same blogs you do. There’s no doubt that the Church has a clear position: on what marriage means and that you don’t receive communion unless you’re in communion with the teachings of Christ, that gay marriage is not a possibility in God’s plan and therefore can’t be a reality in our lives. There’s no doubt about any of that. I think when it’s all said we have to be charitable toward people who disagree with us and we certainly welcome into the Church sinners. I’m one, and they usually welcome me when I come to the parishes.

I think we have to be better at reaching out to divorced Catholics so they don’t think that they’re immediately excluded from the Church because they’ve been divorced and remarried. Some people think that even when they get a divorce they’re not welcome in the Church. So I think we need to work on that.

We have deep respect for people with same-sex attraction, but we can’t pretend that they’re welcome on their own terms. None of us are welcome on our own terms in the Church; we’re welcome on Jesus’ terms. That’s what it means to be a Christian—you submit yourself to Jesus and his teaching, you don’t recreate your own body of spirituality.

I’m not fundamentally worried because I believe the Holy Spirit guides the Church. The last report at the end was certainly much better than the interim listing of the topics that were talked about.

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The post What Archbp. Chaput really said about the Synod appeared first on Fr. Z's Blog.

Are you ready for next weekend?

Oct. 25th, 2014 12:05 am
podperson: spider (spider)
[personal profile] podperson posting in [community profile] nano_writers
Just one week left until NaNoWriMo starts. For some of us this will be the last free weekend until December.  If you haven't started one, consider making a NaNo survival kit. Get all those must haves together and ready to go. Any 'must haves' you want to share?

Enjoy the weekend, and write down those plot bunnies. You'll need them next Saturday.


hradzka: Cassidy, from Garth Ennis's PREACHER. (Default)

October 2014

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The collected poems from my descent into madness year spent writing daily poems are now available from Lulu as the cheapest 330-page book they would let me make ($16.20). If that's too pricey, you can also get it from Lulu as a free download, or just click on the "a poem every day" tag to read them here. But if you did buy one, that'd be awesome.

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