Archive for ‘Science’

August 10, 2019

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Six by Nine | I managed to get a spin on the Tiger yesterday going between project locations. Weather was perfect and a quiet backroad empty of traffic.

July 20, 2019

Intrepid

50 Years Ago | We ventured, only a small step in the vastness of the Universe, beyond our earthly home. A journey of 3 days over a quarter million miles to our neighbor the Moon. A scheme so daring and difficult it gave us a glimpse of what was possible as a race when minds and courage come together. This iconic photograph taken by Neil Armstrong of Buzz Aldrin shows a man standing on a grey dusty plain under a black sky lit by a bright sun. We really are amazing… it’s just a shame a a civilization we’re quite dumb some of the time too…

July 15, 2019

Standing Room Only

LEM | Lunar (Excursion) Module. Three days after embarking on the Trans Lunar Injection the Apollo spacecraft entered orbit around the Moon. Separating from the Command Service Module the LM descended to the surface with the Commander and Pilot standing at these controls in their full spacesuits. The descent and landing is well documented as one of the coolest pieces of flying by anyone anywhere. Like landing a telephone box, using the computing power of a Casio scientific calculator, onto a grey dust surface under a black sky…. with diminishing fuel and alarms going off.

July 11, 2019

Apollo

Command Module | Fifty Years ago this month three intrepid explorers headed off into a lunar rendezvous with destiny. Backed by countless engineers, scientists, mathematicians, computers (women who crunches the complex equations for orbital mechanics), skilled laborers, wives, budget analysts, lingerie manufacturers (the space suits required impeccable needlework); they headed beyond the surly bonds of earth atop the mighty Saturn V rocket. The cramped confines of the Command Module ‘Columbia’ took them the quarter million miles to our closest neighbor in the skies.

March 6, 2019

Chaika (Seagull)

Hero for All | Valentina Tereshkova celebrates her 82nd birthday today. Launched atop Vostok 6 on June 16 1963 she spent 70 hours in space orbiting the Earth 48 times becoming the first woman cosmonaut.

January 2, 2019

R1-D1

I, Robot – in 2017 Yamaha displayed their autonomous riding motorcycle being hurled around a racetrack at speed. Today is the 99th birthday of science writer Isaac Asimov who created the three rules of robotics:

  1. First Law – A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  2. Second Law – A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
  3. Third Law – A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.
November 16, 2018

Cornerin’

The Leaning Lady- not much beats a sweeping corner on a motorcycle. As the tires grip the road a fine balance between verticality and the gyroscopic effect of the wheel as you push into the inner grip is needed. It’s as if defying gravity is an effortless exercise…. which on a bike is very true!

October 21, 2018

Star Gazer

An Eye on the Universe – today’s destination for a Fall ride was the 120 year old Yorkers Observatory, which houses the world’s largest refracting telescope. A 40″ diameter lens that provided important findings in the early years of 20th Century astrophysics. It is located at Williams Bay on Lake Geneva in Wisconsin. As of October 1st is is no longer under the management of the University of Chicago and is not open to the general public.

March 29, 2018

Sentinel

Blade Runner – Currently watching The Directors Cut of this sublime film based on Philip K. Dick’s novella. Illustrator Syd Mead was behind many of the futuristic visuals for the vehicles, buildings and daily accessories in the dystopian realm. We’re only one year away from its date: November 2019… Who’s to say if we don’t descend into that state of affairs by then?

“Fiery the angels rose fall, and as they rose fall deep thunder roll’d. Around their shores: indignant burning with the fires of Orc.” William Blake / Roy Batty

November 8, 2017

ISS

Endurance – great lecture this evening by astronaut Scott Kelly who has spent over 500 days in space, including one mission of nearly a year. From this lofty perch he would spend his spare moments gazing down at the earth from the observation cupola. 

October 3, 2015

Water found on Mars

  
Just been to see a great film: The Martian starring Matt Damon in the titular role also known as Mark Watney. Directed by Ridley Scott and based on a marvelous book by Andy Wier it tells the survival difficulties of an astronaut stranded on Mars in a fictional, though truly believable mission to the red planet. Two Thumbs Up! Go see it!

  

 
In other news: Jason Bourne can ride a mean motorcycle… 

May 26, 2015

Dune

 
“The mystery of life isn’t a problem to solve, but a reality to experience.”

Frank Herbert 

One of the greatest scifi books with far reaching topics of politics, religion, economy, ecology, and eugenics, its setting millennia in the future could be read as a shadow of the world today. Dune was published fifty years ago and is as fresh today as it was in the sixties when the environmental movement was in its infancy. 

http://www.amazon.com/Dune-Frank-Herbert/dp/0441172717

May 11, 2015

What do you care what other people think?

  

Richard P. Feynman’s birthday. Curiosity feeds the mind.

February 27, 2015

Live Long & Prosper

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And so goes the salutation of the great Spock. Today saw the passing of Leonard Nimoy at the age of 83. Photo is his Mission Impossible character Paris looking logically cool.

October 23, 2014

TBT

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When I had the venerable Original Ninja my jaunts went further afield. It could zoom the big roads with ease and be a nimble ride on the back roads of Wisconsin. Here I am up by Lake Geneva I nice hour circuit around it through rolling countryside. I always stop in at the Yerkes Observatory; its 40 inch lens being the largest refracting telescope used for research.

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Tank mounted baglux with map. Ready for the unknown roads. A very comfortable bike to ride…
Photos taken on Kodak slide film with a trusty Nikon F3.