Here’s a great collection of retro space posters put together by some valiant bloke on imgur. It’s really amazing how far humans have traveled beyond our fragile home world, both personally or with their spacecraft contraptions. But some of us seem to forget this. With all this suffering and injustice happening in the world, it’s easy to discount humans as a plague. These artworks serve as a reminder that our species can be truly amazing, transcendental even.
It’s been a while, but we’re back with one of our favorite features – This Week in Science! If you’ve not been here for the previous editions, we’ll discuss not only the most interesting studies of the past week, but also the people behind them – the men and women pushing forth the boundaries of science. The Iron Snail lives
Science not only involves a lot of technical know-how, but also a great deal of creativity and imagination. Often science and art are seen as opposites, which can’t be further from the truth. Worst case, they complement each other. For one, art may actually be the best way to communicate science to those who have yet to take a class or lacked an inspired influence in its due time. Take for instance Kaycie Dunlap’s graduate thesis called Elements – Experiments in Character Design. For her project Kaycie decided to use her passion for character design to give chemistry a more human look. So she ambitiously sketched by hand a witty character for 112 chemical elements from the period table.
It’s hard to believe anything can be alive thousands of feet below the Indian Ocean where thermal vents effectively boil the water. Yet even in the most inhospitable conditions, life has a way of creeping in. Such is the case of chrysomallon squamiferum, a snail-like creature which may very well sport the best armor in the animal kingdom.
We’re all guilty of bringing home useless items like flyers or old computer electronics from time to time, hoping that one day we’ll use them. Don’t kid yourself. It rarely happens. For some people though, hoarding seems to be a way of life, bordering obsessive compulsive disorder. In fact, psychologists class hoarding behavior as a distinct disorder which affects 2 to 5 percent of Americans.
In the early 1900s, cigarettes were living their golden years – something which millions of lungs regretted. But you can’t charge the smoking industry of not being creative. Back in the day, manufactures used to insert stiffening cards into their paper cigarette packs, to make them more sturdy and last more; not long after that, companies started printing all sorts of quotes, trivia, artwork, and… life hacks. In the early 20th Century, Gallaher’s Cigarettes printed a special series of 100 “How to do it”, and they included some tips which are really useful even today.
For millennia, they’ve been the uncontested kings of the mountains, killing things up to three times bigger than them. One Indian snow leopard, protected and observed in a national park, is reported to have consumed five blue sheep, nine Tibetan woolly hares, twenty-five marmots, five domestic goats, one domestic sheep, and fifteen birds – in a single year! For an animal that typically weighs under 50 kgs, that’s quite remarkable.
Mate Tea is one of the more uncommon and special teas you can have. Not exactly a tea, it’s been a favorite of millions for hundreds of years. Typically prepared from dried leaves of Yerba Mate, the tea is served through a metallic straw called a bombilla. But let’s take it slower, and start with the beginning. Early Mate Mate was
I know you don’t like it, but the truth is science is politicized since, ultimately, serious research depends on funding. That doesn’t mean, though, that politicians aren’t sympathetic or that they do not understand the importance of science. Some seem to do, anyway. But perhaps the most vulnerable area of science to politics, however, is space exploration. Year after year, it seems like NASA’s budget keep thinning. Although NASA is still the most resourceful space agency in the world and despite some amazing achievements (Curiosity rover on Mars or New Horizon’s flyby past Pluto, just to name a few), things could be a lot better. Arguably, if NASA kept its stellar budget during the Apollo era, we would’ve likely been on Mars by now, maybe even with a permanent outpost.
Just before midnight, last Wednesday, a devastating explosion occurred in the Chinese port city of Tianjin. The blast took place in some chemical containers with a force equivalent to two dozen tons of TNT, killing 85 and relocating citizens over a 3-mile radius. These aerial photos shared by Quartz, document the dramatic event which paralyzed a whole city for days and was witnessed from space. Explosions continued to happen days after the initial event, whose cause has yet to be identified.