newest post on the cultural juggernaut blog, on public space in the ny subway and who’s allowed to use it

Much as I adore 798 and Caochangdi, the neighborhoods make me a little uneasy because they are government sanctioned.  Although they started out as organically-grown art neighborhoods, they have since become Official Art Spaces, which gives rise to concerns that the art within these spaces can’t live up to its critical potential.  To some extent, art that is created and displayed in these spaces is necessarily complicit with the official government narratives and the Party line.  

This article addresses those concerns by talking about Chinese artists who have sought alternative spaces to make and exhibit art.

sciencesoup:

Death and Rebirth
On July 4, 1054 A.D, a bright new star appeared in the sky. Although it was 6,500 light-years away from Earth, it shone brighter than whole galaxies and was visible in daylight for 23 days. Little did the astronomers of the day know, the “new” star was actually the violent death of an old star: a supernova explosion. Stars more than ten times the mass of our sun will eventually become supernovas when they die. For their whole lives, they battle to balance energy trying to get out and gravity trying to crush them in under their own weight—but when they run out of fuel to burn, gravity wins. The star’s core collapses and its very atoms are crushed, emitting an enormous shockwave that flings heavy elements out into space. The remnants of this particular supernova formed the enigmatic Crab Nebula, an energetic cloud spanning five light-years, with each different colour representing different chemicals: orange is hydrogen, red is nitrogen, green is oxygen… And at the centre of the nebula lies the remnant of the exploded star. Gravity has squashed all the empty space out of it, leaving an incredibly dense object called a neutron star—just 20 km across, but with the mass of our sun, so on Earth, one teaspoonful would weigh one billion tons. Rotating neutron stars are known as pulsars, and this one spins at a rate of 30 times per second, sending out violent jets of particles at nearly the speed of light.
(Image Credit: 1, 2)
sciencesoup:

Death and Rebirth
On July 4, 1054 A.D, a bright new star appeared in the sky. Although it was 6,500 light-years away from Earth, it shone brighter than whole galaxies and was visible in daylight for 23 days. Little did the astronomers of the day know, the “new” star was actually the violent death of an old star: a supernova explosion. Stars more than ten times the mass of our sun will eventually become supernovas when they die. For their whole lives, they battle to balance energy trying to get out and gravity trying to crush them in under their own weight—but when they run out of fuel to burn, gravity wins. The star’s core collapses and its very atoms are crushed, emitting an enormous shockwave that flings heavy elements out into space. The remnants of this particular supernova formed the enigmatic Crab Nebula, an energetic cloud spanning five light-years, with each different colour representing different chemicals: orange is hydrogen, red is nitrogen, green is oxygen… And at the centre of the nebula lies the remnant of the exploded star. Gravity has squashed all the empty space out of it, leaving an incredibly dense object called a neutron star—just 20 km across, but with the mass of our sun, so on Earth, one teaspoonful would weigh one billion tons. Rotating neutron stars are known as pulsars, and this one spins at a rate of 30 times per second, sending out violent jets of particles at nearly the speed of light.
(Image Credit: 1, 2)

sciencesoup:

Death and Rebirth

On July 4, 1054 A.D, a bright new star appeared in the sky. Although it was 6,500 light-years away from Earth, it shone brighter than whole galaxies and was visible in daylight for 23 days. Little did the astronomers of the day know, the “new” star was actually the violent death of an old star: a supernova explosion. Stars more than ten times the mass of our sun will eventually become supernovas when they die. For their whole lives, they battle to balance energy trying to get out and gravity trying to crush them in under their own weight—but when they run out of fuel to burn, gravity wins. The star’s core collapses and its very atoms are crushed, emitting an enormous shockwave that flings heavy elements out into space. The remnants of this particular supernova formed the enigmatic Crab Nebula, an energetic cloud spanning five light-years, with each different colour representing different chemicals: orange is hydrogen, red is nitrogen, green is oxygen… And at the centre of the nebula lies the remnant of the exploded star. Gravity has squashed all the empty space out of it, leaving an incredibly dense object called a neutron star—just 20 km across, but with the mass of our sun, so on Earth, one teaspoonful would weigh one billion tons. Rotating neutron stars are known as pulsars, and this one spins at a rate of 30 times per second, sending out violent jets of particles at nearly the speed of light.

(Image Credit: 1, 2)

(via aperture-inc)

anythingphotography:

There’s nothing like a composite photo of the Perseids meteor shower to hammer home the realization that the Earth is hurtling through space like the Millennium Falcon making the Kessel Run.

(Via. Kottke)

That simile though

is pretty much the best ever

sciencesoup:

The Mars Curiosity Rover will be the largest man-made object ever to land on another planet, and it’s predicted to touch down on Sunday August 5 or Monday August 6, depending on where you are—just hours away.

Landing Time:

  • 10:31 p.m. US Pacific Standard Time
  • 1:31…

oh here, something that’s actually official

I.e., the question you’ve all been asking yourselves.

If you haven’t been… get with it, man.

So why do we care about landing on Mars?

One obvious reason is that it’s a bitch of an event, as indicated by the Seven Minutes of Terror a craft must go through to reach the surface.  The US has succeeded in 6 out of 7 Mars landings, which is 6 more than any other country.  Curiosity will also be the first rover to land on difficult terrain, which goes to show the great leaps and bounds NASA has achieved since it started sending rovers to Mars.

But most importantly, thanks to Curiosity’s size (roughly ginormous, compared to previous rovers; in fact, ginormous enough to carry multiple chem labs), we will be able to hunt around for the ingredients of life.  Overall, Curiosity will be examining the history of the planet, with an eye out for any carbon-y goodness that may indicate there was once life on Mars.

The Milky Way, Stars, and Aurora Borealis

Video shot from the ISS

With some lightning storms, city lights, and the sunrise thrown in for the hell of it.

From Wired

hgrreen:

theatlantic:

theatlanticvideo:

A Short Film About a Lonely Robot, Created Entirely From NASA Videos

It’s 2045, and a lone robot orbits Earth in a spaceship, left there by his human companions. He longs for his home on Earth, but knows he’ll never see it again. Tragic, huh? This is the story of Robbie, a sentient Catholic robot, and the subject of the short film Robbie from director Neil Harvey.

Sad robot is sad.

wow this was pretty brilliant. i have actually seen a couple films where they use footage from nasa to tell a narrative and it’s always so awe-inspiring. like this imagery is just that inherently stunning, without there having to be any fancy editing or camera-work. i mean, they don’t need it — they’re in space on a space ship doing space stuff. that footage is just begging to be made into something. 

aaaaah going to watch this when i’m not working

going to watch it.  yes.

(via amadusa)

“One of the biggest obstacles, at the moment, may be the budgetary constraints. President Barack Obama’s budget proposal in February canceled a joint US-European robotic mission to Mars in 2016, and the rest of NASA’s budget has also been chopped.”

This kind of thing is what losing my vote looks like.

But the rest of the article is nice.  It’s about planning the menu for the astronauts who will be sent to Mars in 2030.

You know.  Unless that gets defunded too.