Monday, September 1, 2014

sagansense:

child-of-thecosmos:

Radio and television broadcasting may be only a brief passing phase in our technological development. When we imagine alien civilizations broadcasting signals with radio telescopes, are we any different from earlier generations who imagined riding cannon shells to the moon? Civilizations even slightly more advanced than ours may have already moved on to some other mode of communication, one that we have yet to discover or even imagine. Their messages could be swirling all around us at this very moment, but we lack the means to perceive them just as all of our ancestors, up to a little more than a century ago, would have been oblivious to the most urgent radio signal from another world. 

But there’s another more troubling possibility: Civilizations, like other living things, may only live so long before perishing due to natural causes, or violence, or self-inflicted wounds. Whether or not we ever make contact with intelligent alien life may depend on a critical question: What is the life expectancy of a civilization?

- Episode 11: The Immortals, Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey

Recommended reading:

image

Everything you need to know about this book can be found in this wonderfully thorough review by Astrobiology Magazine from 2003.

image

I plan on doing a full writeup/review about this book; however, I can tell you it’s one of the best Carl’s ever written and is still heavily referenced by scientists across multiple fields regarding the search for extraterrestrial life, be it intelligent or otherwise. A review on the book and the study of astrobiology itself can be via a PDF by Charley Lineweaver of the Planetary Science Institute at the Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics and the Research School of Earth Sciences.

The most fascinating aspect of this book is that it was originally written by I.S. Shklovskii in Russian, re-translated into English, whereby Carl adds his scientific “two-cents”, expanding on subjects and explaining further in a way only Carl, himself, can. For instance, the last paragraph in Chapter 31: Interstellar contact by automatic probe vehicles:

At this point in the Russian edition of the present work, Shklovskii expresses his belief that civilizations are not inevitably doomed to self-destruction, despite his description of contemporary Western literature as filled with details of atomic holocaust. He expresses his belief that as long as capitalism exists on Earth, a violent end to intelligent life on the planet is probable. There is reason to assume, he asserts, that future peaceful societies will be constructed on the basis of Communism. I am able to imagine alternative scenarios for the future. No one today lives in a society which closely resembles Adam Smith capitalism or Karl Marx communism. The political dichotomies of the twentieth century may seem to our remote descendants no more exhaustive of the range of possibilities for the entire future of mankind than do, for us, the alternatives of the European religious wars of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. As Shklovskii says, the forces of peace in the world are great. Mankind is not likely to destroy itself. There is too much left to do.

Also recommended:

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SETI Scientist Jill Tarter provided a beautiful TED Talk about this subject, and in this interview with NOVA, she speaks on being the inspiration for Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan’s book/film ‘Contact’ whereby Jodie Foster portrays Dr. Tarter.

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Seth Shostak, Senior Astronomer for SETI, presented an enriching TED Talk about why he’s convinced we’re closer than ever in detecting, contacting, or receiving signals from ETI; and recently, had a Q&A conversation with Science 2.0 appropriately titled “Why I Believe We’ll Find Aliens.”

image

…stay curious.

collegehumor:

Bored of pretending to get a text message to look cool? Try these apps instead.

Finish reading —> 6 Phone Apps to Make You Seem Way Cooler Than You Are

Friday, August 29, 2014
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
did-you-kno:

A 99-year-old woman in Iowa makes a dress from scratch every single day so that African children in need will have something pretty to wear, and she adds a personal touch to each and every dress she makes. Source

did-you-kno:

A 99-year-old woman in Iowa makes a dress from scratch every single day so that African children in need will have something pretty to wear, and she adds a personal touch to each and every dress she makes. Source

Sunday, August 24, 2014
phoenix-falls:

vagisodium:

uninhibitedandunrepentant:

lovesthesmarty:

lsama:

This is the best idea for a restaurant. - Imgur
I DON’T THINK IT’S LITERALLY POSSIBLE FOR ME TO LIKE OR FAV OR UPVOTE THIS ENOUGH

I would like to see more of these.

Is this not a thing in America?
It’s a thing all over here in Australia. You get a wrist band. Means you can buy no booze, but you get free soft drinks.

this is a thing in canada too like all you gotta do is say that youre driving

Free….soda….in the US for….DD’s? Free…anything to encourage safe behaviours? 
That’s too much logic for this country. Sounds like Socialist propaganda 

phoenix-falls:

vagisodium:

uninhibitedandunrepentant:

lovesthesmarty:

lsama:

This is the best idea for a restaurant. - Imgur

I DON’T THINK IT’S LITERALLY POSSIBLE FOR ME TO LIKE OR FAV OR UPVOTE THIS ENOUGH

I would like to see more of these.

Is this not a thing in America?

It’s a thing all over here in Australia. You get a wrist band. Means you can buy no booze, but you get free soft drinks.

this is a thing in canada too like all you gotta do is say that youre driving

Free….soda….in the US for….DD’s? Free…anything to encourage safe behaviours? 

That’s too much logic for this country. Sounds like Socialist propaganda 

hashtag-troyler:

satan-masterofsass:

myfrankensteinromance:

corpsin123:

gallifrey-feels:

twinkletwinkleyoulittlefuck:

tinkerbeth-in-neverland:

sparklesstripeyjumpers:

broadcasting-in-living-color:

Dynamo, an English magician, went around London over the weekend, “levitating” next to this bus. He hasn’t revealed how he accomplished this trick.

dude dont forget this guy walked on water

he casually strolled down the side of a building, LEVITATED IN FRONT OF CHRIST THE REDEEMER IN RIO and predicted football scores resulting in a large win on a bet WHICH HE THEN GAVE TO THE TEENAGE CANCER TRUST. Dynamo is amazing.

he’s finally getting notes!!!!

I love this man so much

fucking dynamo fucking sold his fucking soul to fucking Crowley

Fucking explain to me how else he could fucking melt glass with his bare fucking hands

JESUS

This is that superhero nobody believes is real under the guise of being a magician, oh my god he’s a deity.

this is the shit drop out students from Hogwarts do

THE LAST ONE 

(Source: thetricksterdickster)

Saturday, August 23, 2014
malformalady:

Yili Apricot Valley, China. Every year, these rolling hills in Xinjiang explode into a puffy sea of pink and white. As the largest groves of apricots in the region, this flowering signifies the beginning of the fruiting season, while also transforming the landscape into something other-worldly.

malformalady:

Yili Apricot Valley, China. Every year, these rolling hills in Xinjiang explode into a puffy sea of pink and white. As the largest groves of apricots in the region, this flowering signifies the beginning of the fruiting season, while also transforming the landscape into something other-worldly.

mothernaturenetwork:

How to create a year-round garden filled with colorWant a garden that blooms all season long? Use this chart as your starting point.

mothernaturenetwork:

How to create a year-round garden filled with color
Want a garden that blooms all season long? Use this chart as your starting point.

the-11-doctor:

thisfuturemd:

brigwife:



Romanticized vs. Realistic

as a member of Scotland I can confirm

the-11-doctor:

thisfuturemd:

brigwife:

image

Romanticized vs. Realistic

as a member of Scotland I can confirm

(Source: british-v0gue)

Friday, August 22, 2014

asylum-art:

Magical Paths Begging To Be Walked

Roads and paths pervade our literature, poetry, artwork, linguistic expressions and music. Even photographers can’t keep their eyes (and lenses) off of a beautiful road or path, which is why we collected this list of 28 amazing photos of paths.

Paths like these have a powerful grip on the human imagination – they can bring adventure, promise and change or solitude, peace and calm. There’s nothing like a walk down a beautiful path to clear your head – or to fill it with ideas!

I’ll leave you with an excellent quote from J. R. R. Tolkien’s works while you enjoy these images; “It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.

  1. Autumn In The White Carpathians
  2. Rhododendron Laden Path, Mount Rogers, Virginia, USA
  3. Spring In Hallerbos Forest, Belgium
  4. Autumn Path In Kyoto, Japan 
  5. Autumn Path
  6. Bamboo Path In Kyoto, Japan
  7. Hitachi Seaside Park Path In Japan
  8. Dark Hedges In Ireland
  9. Winter Forest Path, Czech Republic
  10. Path Under Blooming Trees In Spring
officialkia:

pennameverity:

This is Duolingo, a language-learning website/app that deserves some serious recognition. It offers over 10 languages for English speakers, as well as courses for non-English speakers around the world, and they’re in the process of adding more. 
But wait, I don’t want to do any more schoolwork! Not to worry little one, Duolingo is actually more like a game. You can compete with friends, and earn “lingots” (which are basically Duolingo money) to buy power-ups, extra activities, and bonus skills - like Flirting.

I’m already taking a language, what do I need this for? 
It’s not really a secret that most school language courses (in America, anyway) suck and only teach you to speak the language at about a third grader’s level. Which is why Duolingo is so freaking awesome.
Teachers can’t give every student individualized attention, but Duolingo can. If you’re not learning the way you want to or as much as you want to in the classroom, Duolingo is a really great resource. It’s easy, tailored to you, and really effective.

Duolingo tracks your progress and reminds you when you haven’t studied for a while or need a refresher on something. Already semi-fluent in a language? No problem, just take a shortcut to more advanced subjects or test out of the lesson. 
The lessons start with the basics (he, she, hello, thank you, etc) and move up to harder stuff. Duolingo focuses on vocabulary first, so you can learn the language and then the grammar that goes with it - much simpler than the system most schools use. It also tracks the number of words you’ve learned and how well you know them.

And you don’t even have to write out the flashcards!
Duolingo is perfect for reviewing everything you forgot over the summer or giving you the extra help you need. And if you’re trying to learn a language on your own, it’s fantastic - you don’t have to create your own lessons. Whether you’re trying to learn your second, third, or fifth language, I seriously recommend Duolingo.
Okay, what else?
Duolingo also has discussion boards, where you can ask for help with a hard lesson, make new friends, watch for updates, and share your achievements.
Even better is the Immersion feature. It won’t send you to Spain or France, but it’s pretty awesome. Duolingo takes real articles from the internet, which users translate. You can translate articles from your native language into the language you’re learning or vice versa, which gives you more experience and makes the Internet more universal.
You can suggest new languages and track Duolingo’s progress in creating new courses. Bilinguals (older than 13) can help to create these courses. Duolingo has a long list of courses that can be contributed to, like Punjabi, Hebrew, and Vietnamese. Oh, and Dothraki, Klingon, Sindarin, and Esperanto.
And the best part? IT’S COMPLETELY FREE. 
If you love languages or just want to pass French class this year, USE DUOLINGO. Download the app and practice a language while you wait for the bus instead of playing Angry Birds!

Coolest app I’ve ever downloaded.

officialkia:

pennameverity:

This is Duolingo, a language-learning website/app that deserves some serious recognition. It offers over 10 languages for English speakers, as well as courses for non-English speakers around the world, and they’re in the process of adding more. 

But wait, I don’t want to do any more schoolwork! Not to worry little one, Duolingo is actually more like a game. You can compete with friends, and earn “lingots” (which are basically Duolingo money) to buy power-ups, extra activities, and bonus skills - like Flirting.

image

I’m already taking a language, what do I need this for? 

It’s not really a secret that most school language courses (in America, anyway) suck and only teach you to speak the language at about a third grader’s level. Which is why Duolingo is so freaking awesome.

Teachers can’t give every student individualized attention, but Duolingo can. If you’re not learning the way you want to or as much as you want to in the classroom, Duolingo is a really great resource. It’s easy, tailored to you, and really effective.

image

Duolingo tracks your progress and reminds you when you haven’t studied for a while or need a refresher on something. Already semi-fluent in a language? No problem, just take a shortcut to more advanced subjects or test out of the lesson. 

The lessons start with the basics (he, she, hello, thank you, etc) and move up to harder stuff. Duolingo focuses on vocabulary first, so you can learn the language and then the grammar that goes with it - much simpler than the system most schools use. It also tracks the number of words you’ve learned and how well you know them.

image

And you don’t even have to write out the flashcards!

Duolingo is perfect for reviewing everything you forgot over the summer or giving you the extra help you need. And if you’re trying to learn a language on your own, it’s fantastic - you don’t have to create your own lessons. Whether you’re trying to learn your second, third, or fifth language, I seriously recommend Duolingo.

Okay, what else?

Duolingo also has discussion boards, where you can ask for help with a hard lesson, make new friends, watch for updates, and share your achievements.

Even better is the Immersion feature. It won’t send you to Spain or France, but it’s pretty awesome. Duolingo takes real articles from the internet, which users translate. You can translate articles from your native language into the language you’re learning or vice versa, which gives you more experience and makes the Internet more universal.

You can suggest new languages and track Duolingo’s progress in creating new courses. Bilinguals (older than 13) can help to create these courses. Duolingo has a long list of courses that can be contributed to, like Punjabi, Hebrew, and Vietnamese. Oh, and Dothraki, Klingon, Sindarin, and Esperanto.

And the best part? IT’S COMPLETELY FREE. 

If you love languages or just want to pass French class this year, USE DUOLINGO. Download the app and practice a language while you wait for the bus instead of playing Angry Birds!

Coolest app I’ve ever downloaded.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

(Source: elasan)

ifonlywewereamoungstfriends:

deathcabforkehan:

shipwreckedatseaa:

jakehellrose:

gnarville:

Proof that Bill Murray really is the most interesting man in the world.

That’s why I love this guy.

bill fuckin murray

my hero

Monday, August 18, 2014

starrynights-:

shouldertappingghosts:

If I was a famous author I would publish a book with ten different endings which all went to print with varying degrees of rarity, but not tell the fans about it so that I could watch their confusion as they disagree over how the story ended. Then when they figured it out I would ‘come clean’, telling them that I had released eleven alternate endings and watch them panic again as they all try to find the last ending.

are you satan

sixpenceee:

Lake View Cemetery: The Haserot Angel 

It’s called the Angel of Death Victorious. Due to an effect of weathering and erosion on the bronze, the statue appears to be weeping black tears at all times.