Monday, July 31, 2017

Pain Index ... Insect Style :)

Thank god yours truly has not been nailed by any of these save for Bald Face Hornet and the Harvester Ant. Needless to say, once is enough for this rube without question. :)

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Dragon Flies & Then Some :)

Cyan Virginia Beach Dragonfly

Yellow and Brown Virginia Beach Dragonfly

Yellow and Brown Virginia Beach Dragonfly - Shot 2

Passion Flower @ Virginia Beach

How the Passion Flower gets pollinated. Stellar without a doubt. :)

Butterfly Cameo. 

Ode to concrete - Roman Style :)

Concrete, modern style, craps out within 30-50 years, depending on the weather, while concrete, Roman style, lasts millennia, even when submerged, thanks to a secret sauce just beginning to be understood thanks to esoteric tech of the sophisticated kind.

Pliny the Elder would be pleased.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

City Nightlife :)

The Sony A7SII rocks as a low light beast of historic proportions. Seems said camera also handles space equally as well as seen by amazing nighttime portraits of Japanese and US cities. Enjoy.

Tech, like money, never sleeps - Robert E.

Cicero, prescient to a fault/Post 2400

BRT has criticised the foreign policy of America for years as the P&L of same has been a financial and humanitarian disaster for this country beginning with the CIA assassination of Iran's democratically elected Mohammad Mosaddegh back in 1953. With that being said, the insane trajectory toward war with Russia to maintain the monies to the US version of the Deep State and it's minions is disquieting to say the least. This is not a liberal or conservative issue but rather an existential one for every human being living on planet Earth. 

To whit...

Lastly ...

Any questions?

Thursday, July 27, 2017

A universal driver


Cassini's Grand Finale never ceases to amaze, this time with Titan and precursors to life totally unexpected in a place as cold and remote as Saturn's largest moon.

The international Cassini-Huygens mission has made a surprising detection of a molecule that is instrumental in the production of complex organics within the hazy atmosphere of Saturn’s moon Titan.

Titan boasts a thick nitrogen and methane atmosphere with some of the most complex chemistry seen in the Solar System. It is even thought to mimic the atmosphere of early Earth, before the build-up of oxygen. As such, Titan can be seen as a planet-scale laboratory that can be studied to understand the chemical reactions that may have led to life on Earth, and that could be occurring on planets around other stars.

Addendum: Another Titan surprise, this time regarding cellular membranes.

Nature finds a way, always.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

An Existential Crisis

An existential crisis looms ever nearer as we move further into the Anthropocene.

Sadness comes to mind on our sorry stewardship of the planet we call home.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Self sustaining but for how long?

How little we know about nature's inner workings, particularly with systems as complex as that of the Amazonian Rainforest and it's unique approach to manufacturing it's own rainy season as needs warrant.

The Anthropocene Epoch aka the 6th Great Dying continues unabated due to greed, stupidity and disregard for the long term consequences of destroying irreplaceable treasures like the rain forests of South America.

Seen below is the time span of humans on earth vs life on earth. Astounding says it all.

Any questions?

You know ...

This is like the senate's take on healthcare, right?

For the love of coffee :)

Yours truly loves crank, aka java, aka coffee, aka the caffeine fix that never disappoints as long as it's fresh and unadulterated with sugar and recently, thanks to my son's encouragement, cream as coffee is like tea, a distilled beverage filled with goodies that actually keeps one healthy in more ways than one can count.

My wife will like the last line without question.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Predators 1 & All

Blue Hunter

Damsel 101

The Dark Knight

Unemployment 101

A good friend of mine sent me this gem. Any questions? :)

The Nexus of Power - China style

A wonderful diagram detailing the hierarchy of power in China is most illuminating, especially when a rising star gets purged Soviet style. To whit.

The fall from grace of a rising star in China’s Communist Party sheds light on how a reshuffle of the country’s top officials may play out under the leadership of President Xi Jinping later this year.

Sun Zhengcai, 53, the youngest member of the ruling Politburo, was replaced Saturday as party chief of the southwestern metropolis of Chongqing. He is under investigation for violating party regulations, according to four officials with knowledge of the matter.

The officials said they attended a municipal meeting in Chongqing on Sunday, where they were told by a senior local party member that Sun severely damaged the party’s interests. The officials, who asked not to be identified because the discussions were private, said they were urged to eliminate Sun’s influence and were told that senior local officials committed serious mistakes under Sun’s guidance. The officials said they were also exhorted to follow the instructions of the central leadership and President Xi’s teachings.

Love the party's interest bit.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

4C & counting

In the future, with a 2 meter rise in water and a temperature increase of 4 degrees centigrade, the world will look like this. 

I would rather not see this scenario unfold and chances are, given this rube's age, will not unless immortality or an expanded lifespan comes to pass before yours truly goes to the great beyond as we all do as everyone knows, at least in the year of our lord 2017. :)

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

20 Trillion & Counting

BRT did a study on how many boxcars would $15 billion and $12.8 trillion dollars fill and how much said money would weigh in a blurb titled Just a Follow Up. Now comes Visual Capitalist showing, in 3D, how much space $1 trillion (seen above) and $20 trillion (see below), the size of the US debt, would occupy. Interesting to say the least but ... because dollars are now bits and not paper, weight and size drops to nothing, something akin to the fact money is created from nothing and is backed by nothing, an irony that makes one laugh and cry at the same time while our once great nation slowly goes into the poor house. BRT

This is where things start to get dodgy. Once numbers get beyond the millions, we don’t really have any intuition, tactile familiarity, or comprehension of what they mean.

For example:

One million seconds = 12 days
One billion seconds = 32 years
One trillion seconds = 32,000 years
Going back in time a trillion seconds would place you well before written history, the building of the pyramids, and 10,000 years before the first cave wall paintings in France.

Our monkey brains don’t really know what to do with these giant abstractions, and so it helps to think about them in different ways, especially visually.

Interesting is it not?

Cherry Picking :)

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

5 for 5 :)

Mom with food (Carolina Wren)

Purple Flower

Speed Demon close up

Tiny Slow Mover

Ready for takeoff

Biological Annihilation

BRT has talked about climate change for years as this is the one sure existential threat (beside nukes) man will be facing in the years and decades ahead thanks to fossil fuel burning, the livestock industry, resource depletion and environmental degradation but this great dying is different from the other five as it's happening in a time span shorter by tens of thousands of years due to just how much damage we are doing to the planet we call earth in such a short amount of time.

The population extinction pulse we describe here shows, from a quantitative viewpoint, that Earth’s sixth mass extinction is more severe than perceived when looking exclusively at species extinctions. Therefore, humanity needs to address anthropogenic population extirpation and decimation immediately. That conclusion is based on analyses of the numbers and degrees of range contraction (indicative of population shrinkage and/or population extinctions according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature) using a sample of 27,600 vertebrate species, and on a more detailed analysis documenting the population extinctions between 1900 and 2015 in 177 mammal species. We find that the rate of population loss in terrestrial vertebrates is extremely high—even in “species of low concern.” In our sample, comprising nearly half of known vertebrate species, 32% (8,851/27,600) are decreasing; that is, they have decreased in population size and range. In the 177 mammals for which we have detailed data, all have lost 30% or more of their geographic ranges and more than 40% of the species have experienced severe population declines (>80% range shrinkage). Our data indicate that beyond global species extinctions Earth is experiencing a huge episode of population declines and extirpations, which will have negative cascading consequences on ecosystem functioning and services vital to sustaining civilization. We describe this as a “biological annihilation” to highlight the current magnitude of Earth’s ongoing sixth major extinction event.

The clock is ticking.

Click here for the PDF

A Sense of Scale

This amazing video from Europa Technologies, gives one pause as to how vast reality truly is.

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Friday, July 07, 2017

Oh Oh, I see where this is going :)

Something else altogether :)

Thumbs up or rather, an extra thumb is something else altogether and the altogether is really cool tech without question. :)

Something else altogether indeed.

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

It matters not what party

Trumpcare, the republican HC beast from hell, is temporarily in stasis but it could still be passed given just how determined the repugs want Obamacare gone no matter what the cost may be. More interesting is the opposition to single payer from the dems side even though a very strong majority of Americans want it now because lives are at stake, including my own.

It matters not what party as it's all about the money.

Sunday, July 02, 2017

An Existential Question

BRT has talked about extraterrestrial civilizations quite often as the chances of intelligent life residing in the vastness of the multiverse, from this rube's perspective, is a lock unless all advanced societies are suicidal to the max, thus leaving us all alone as the one chosen species, a notion rather questionable at best as the number of planets orbiting the trillions of stars out there is just too great to consider that our young and primitive civilization is the only option to a vast reality that extends far beyond the ken of man.

The anti-METI movement is predicated on a grim statistical likelihood: If we do ever manage to make contact with another intelligent life-form, then almost by definition, our new pen pals will be far more advanced than we are. The best way to understand this is to consider, on a percentage basis, just how young our own high-tech civilization actually is. We have been sending structured radio signals from Earth for only the last 100 years. If the universe were exactly 14 billion years old, then it would have taken 13,999,999,900 years for radio communication to be harnessed on our planet. The odds that our message would reach a society that had been tinkering with radio for a shorter, or even similar, period of time would be staggeringly long. Imagine another planet that deviates from our timetable by just a tenth of 1 percent: If they are more advanced than us, then they will have been using radio (and successor technologies) for 14 million years. Of course, depending on where they live in the universe, their signals might take millions of years to reach us. But even if you factor in that transmission lag, if we pick up a signal from another galaxy, we will almost certainly find ourselves in conversation with a more advanced civilization.

A civilization 5000 years more advanced would be gods without question. Something to think about don't you think?