Do you have any burning questions about fish, sharks, fishing, or fisheries? Want to ask an expert (or at least an expert-in-training)? Well, today is your lucky day! Starting at 4pm EST, myself and a bunch of other graduate students from the FSU Coastal & Marine Lab will be doing a reddit AMA and will attempt to answer all of your queries. Ask Us Anything!
Want to know what it’s like to
land on Mars be lowered onto the surface of our neighbor planet by a Sky Crane? Well, here you go:
Stories and links of interest from the past week…
Monkeys in Florida? Apparently so, and according to this story in the NYTimes at least one of them has escaped and is currently living large in the suburbs of Tampa. Story goes, back in the 1930’s an enterprising river cruise operator decided to introduce Rhesus monkeys to an island in the Silver River hoping to encourage tourism. Of course, the monkeys escaped from the island and now inhabit the jungle/swamp along the Silver and Ocklawaha rivers, and occasionally wander into nearby towns. Guess I know where our next kayak adventure will be!
I’ve been seeing this very cool video popup quite often lately. It’s from the fine folks at the NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio, and it shows an animated loop of the world’s ocean currents over the span of 2 years!
I know I’ve blogged about the underfunding of NASA before, but recently I came across this editorial about why investing in science is always in our best interest. Whenever the topic of science budgets comes up, NASA is often the target of criticism. Why should we be spending money in space when that money could be put to better use here on earth? Well, astronomer Phil Plait reports on how technology developed by NASA is being used to help fight fires. A technology called cool-wall vortex combustion helps to keep rocket fuel tanks cool during liftoff by spinning the fuel in the tank which creates a vortex that keeps the fuel closer to the center of the tank and the walls of the fuel tank cool. This same system can be added to fire-fighting equipment with some astonishing results: during a test run, a single firefighter was able to control a living room fire in 17.3 seconds using 13.6 gallons of water. Using the standard system, the same fire would require multiple firefighters, over 200 gallons of water and nearly 2 minutes to control! When we invest in science, either through NASA, or NOAA, or even the Department of Defense, we collectively benefit, often in ways that we can’t predict.
Two quick things to post today, the first is this story about how during World War II officers in the OSS who were stationed in the Pacific were given canned asparagus in their emergency rations. The reason for this is that apparently asparagus pee attracts fish! So officers were given the cans of preserved asparagus in hopes that, besides being nutritious itself, the asparagus would help the stranded officers catch more fish and stay alive.
The other note is a plug for my research blog (click here or on the tab above that says “Research”) where I’ve just posted about what it costs to do research in the Florida Keys.
Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson on NASA and the travesty of its underfunding situation:Vodpod videos no longer available.
This here video has been on my mind quite often lately. In it, the physicist Dr. Michio Kaku breaks down two possible future scenarios for mankind. The choice, it seems, is up to us, and we need to start making better choices starting now.
“The transition from Type-0 to Type-1 Civilization … Will We Make It?”