Episode iii: 21st-27th August 2011

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Sciblogs Podcast Episode 2 Draft by kaiwhata. The World by National Geographic is live. Aug 18, 2011 The World, Stamen's first iPad app and our first project with the National Geographic Society, is available for download from Apple's app store today.

The World by National Geographic is live

Yeah! The heart of the app is a globe of (you guessed it) the world, with overlays of National Geographic's unmistakable cartography available for the different parts of the earth. Each of these maps can be layered over a reference, terrain or ocean globe, and you can mix and match the different styles as you like. Space entrepreneurs may hold fate of ISS - space - 23 August 2011. FOLLOWING the retirement of the space shuttle on 21 July, Americans couldn't have relished the thought of being dependent on Russian Soyuz rockets to get into space.

Space entrepreneurs may hold fate of ISS - space - 23 August 2011

So when Russia's space agency Roskosmos said a week later that the 370-tonne International Space Station would be ditched in the Pacific Ocean in 2020, it must have seemed a hit below the belt. "So, I guess that's it then," Keith Cowing wrote, on the blog NASAwatch. "Russia gets to make the decision to scrap something we paid the lion's share to build and operate. " It is not quite that simple. Crop circles. This post is syndicated from Physics Stop – Original Post There’s a great article in Physics World on crop circles.

Crop circles

Not a discussion about man-made / weather-made / UFO-made – any sensible interpretation would be man-made – but just HOW do you make such intricate and vast patterns so quickly and leave almost no traces behind. Some of the patterns that crop-up (sorry) in crop fields can be fractals, reproduced to an astonishing level of detail. There’s some evidence that the crop-circle makers are really very scientifically based and have moved beyond the rope, peg and stomping board and are armed with magnetrons and other secret techniques by which they carry out their art.

Physicsworld.com. Cavity magnetron. Magnetron with section removed to exhibit the cavities.

Cavity magnetron

The cathode in the center is not visible. The waveguide emitting microwaves is at the left. The magnet producing a field parallel to the long axis of the device is not shown. A similar magnetron with a different section removed. Central cathode is visible; antenna conducting microwaves at the top; magnet is not shown. Steve Jobs stands down as CEO of Apple Computer. Breaking news is that Steve Jobs, CEO and co-founder of Apple Computer, has resigned his post.

Steve Jobs stands down as CEO of Apple Computer

Press reports are citing his resignation letter, To the Apple Board of Directors and the Apple Community:I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee.As far as my successor goes, I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple.I believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it. And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role.I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you.Steve. Simplicity, Flexibility, Beauty!, Kiwi PyCon 2011, August 27-28, 2011, Wellington, New Zealand. 1. Python: What can it do for us scientists?

The answer is A LOT!

1. Python: What can it do for us scientists?

Let me clarify.. Though Python is a programming language, in the recent years it has emerged as an extremely powerful tool for a variety of scientific applications: from data analysis to simulation and complex visualisations to interfacing with instruments. NZPUG - New Zealand Python User Group. Ruby, Python, and Science. David Jacobs has written a long blog post Ruby is beautiful (but I’m moving to Python).

Ruby, Python, and Science

Here’s my summary. Ruby is much better than Java, but the Ruby community is too focused on web development and the language has no scientific library. Python has a lot of the same advantages as Ruby, is used for more than web programming, and has SciPy. Update: There is now a fledgling SciRuby project. Further reading: Programming for Scientists. November 17, 2009 – 6:34 pm Logo owned by the Python Software Foundation Rich has recently been considering switching to the Python programming language.

Programming for Scientists

Currently, Matlab is the language of choice in his department for rapid development and prototyping of code. It’s very good at this, but Mathworks (the company who produces Matlab) have been tinkering with the licencing terms, leading to hassles where none should exist. Python for Scientists. In reaction to several colleagues asking about Python , I thought a webpage would be more useful than giving an exhaustive rundown on Python verbally.

Python is a script based language that allows programmers/scientists to get their algorithms and functions working in little or no time. A large number of modules and wrappers are being built for Python, like RPy and Scipy , to allow advanced tools and faster processing speeds to be implemented. Plotting modules and programs are also in wide use among Python users. The wide array of tools that can be used for plotting provides great flexibility. To help users at all levels of Python familiarity, a list of handy links is given below in sections. PyBrain. Matplotlib: python plotting — Matplotlib v1.0.1 documentation. August 27, 1883: The island of Krakatoa blows up.

Today, August 27th, marks the grim anniversary of one of the most devastating volcanic eruptions in recorded history: the final explosion of the island of Krakatoa in 1883.

August 27, 1883: The island of Krakatoa blows up

The eruption — and the tsunami that was generated by it — is estimated to have killed some one hundred thousand people, and it has even been speculated in Simon Winchester’s 2003 book Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded that the eruption led to the political downfall of the Dutch Indonesian colonies. An 1888 lithograph representing the eruption of Krakatoa (source). On his Scientific American blog History of Geology, David Bressan has relayed some of the eyewitness accounts of the devastation. I thought it would be interesting to describe some of the first published scientific accounts of the event, and the struggle to understand it in its aftermath.

Calendar. Brewing A Designer Beer. A new discovery has unlocked the secret story of lager beer’s South American origins, and is letting scientists piece together the genetic history of the domesticated microbe that keeps lager cool.

Brewing A Designer Beer

This final piece of the yeast’s genetic family tree could one day help brewers create custom-made designer brews with carefully selected characteristics. The modern-day lager yeast is a hybrid, born from an ancient hookup between a Saccharomyces cerevisiae--a popular ingredient for brewers and bakers--and another yeast that Diego Libkind and his company have identified and named Sacchyromyces eubyanus.

Room-temperature brown dwarf spied just 9 light-years off. 3 Big data security analytics techniques you can apply now to catch advanced persistent threats Scientists perusing data collected by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) have spotted some really cool stars – brown dwarfs with an atmospheric temperature as low as an agreeable 25°C. Dubbed "Y dwarfs", these objects have hitherto eluded astronomers hunting them at visible wavelengths, although WISE has finally nailed six examples within a distance of around 40 light-years from our own Sun.

Coolest brown dwarf discovered. Lisa Grossman, reporter (Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA) The coolest stars in the galaxy have finally come out of hiding. Astronomers using data from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) have found six chilly almost-stars called Y dwarfs, which had been hunted unsuccessfully for more than a decade. Y dwarfs are the coldest class of brown dwarfs, star-like bodies that are too low-mass to fuse hydrogen in their cores.

NASA's humanoid wakes up in space, starts Tweeting. Kass: Of moon men and red cucumbers - chicagotribune.com. August 25, 2011|John Kass Of all the hoaxes in American history, my favorite involves the first "scientific" proof of life on the moon: The winged humanoids called Vespertilio-homo, or man-bat, written 176 years ago this week in the New York Sun. The Vespertilio-homo had copper-colored hair.

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