Random Thoughts On Space

As usual I am going to post on space news for it gets so little coverage in the Age Of Trump when we go from one crisis to another.

For decades we have been on the hunt for our ET brethren out there…SETI….other tries to find our relatives (according to some)…..but instead of finding the perfect planet for life as we know it maybe we should look elsewhere as well…..

Assuming that alien life will be similar to what evolved here on Earth could severely limit the potential for big discoveries, researchers said. 

On Friday (Aug. 2) at the first annual TESS Science Conference here at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), a panel of scientists  discussed what’s next in the search for signs of life on other worlds — and just how close we might be to finding such signs. (TESS is NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, which just marked one year of planet hunting in Earth orbit.) 

https://www.space.com/alien-life-hunt-not-limited-earth-like-life.html

After reading that….I saw that a “super Earth” has been found…..

What was once considered pure fantasy in movies like “Avatar,” is now looking a little more plausible. Earlier this week, NASA announced the discovery of a possible Earth-like planet, located just 31 light years away – a hop, skip and a jump in cosmic terms – that may be able to support life.

“I think it’s an amazing discovery,” Lisa Kaltenegger, from the Carl Sagan Institute at Cornell, said. “We have a small mission called ‘Tess’ that’s scanning the whole sky, where the brightest and closest objects are, to find planets like ours and this is the first one.”

The planet named GJ 357 d, is six times larger than Earth. It orbits a dwarf star with two other previously unknown planets.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/planet-gj357-d-potentially-habitable-super-earth-discovered/

It appears that NASA is finally getting serious about a trip and colonization of Mars…..the biggest problem other than the trip there is the habitat that will be needed to house our colonists……

If humans hope to colonize Mars someday, we’ll need to figure how to survive and grow crops on a large scale in an inhospitable environment. A new study in Nature Astronomy suggests a potential part of the solution: Build greenhouses and other structures out of an extremely light insulating material called aerogel, per NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This material, made mostly of silica and similar to Styrofoam, is nicknamed “frozen smoke” for its appearance, notes CNET. In their study, researchers mimicked the environment on Mars to show that the aerogel structures would allow in light for photosynthesis but block harmful UV radiation, all while raising temperatures beneath them to levels that would melt frozen water beneath the surface.

That, crucially, would allow habitats to be built in wide swaths of otherwise inhabitable parts of the planet. “Mars is warmer around the equator, but most of the water ice is located at higher latitudes,” says co-author Laura Kerber of NASA. “Building with silica aerogel would allow us to artificially create warm environments where there is already water ice available.” The next step is to test the concept on a larger scale in areas such as the Atacama Desert in South America and the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica, reports Wired. “This regional approach to making Mars habitable is much more achievable than global atmospheric modification,” says researcher Robin Wordsworth. “Unlike the previous ideas to make Mars habitable, this is something that can be developed and tested systematically with materials and technology we already have.”

But before we build habitats……Nukes the planet…..Mars that is…

This is a private businessman that wants to nuke Mars to make it ready for humans…..Elon Musk…..

Musk believes that by hitting Mars with nuclear weapons, the planet’s polar ice caps could melt and release vast amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, which would essentially create a greenhouse effect that raises the temperature and air pressure of the planet — like a really quick version of climate change.

Musk has shared this opinion for years, dating back to interviews with the billionaire from 2015. He even went on Stephen Colbert’s late-night talk show to discuss his idea of bombing Mars

https://www.businessinsider.com/elon-musk-wants-to-nuke-mars-plans-t-shirts-2019-8

He should check the Outer Space Treaty before he goes off half cocked (pun intended)…..

Finally I have been a critic of Trump’s proposal for a Space Force…..but apparently some in the EU do not want to be upstaged by Trump…..

Emmanuel Macron’s race into space makes Germans nervous.

The French government is poised to lay out details on Thursday of a plan to staff up a “space high command” in Toulouse, as it expands the remit of its air force to cover orbital defense and ward off potential threats to infrastructure in space from big powers including China, Russia and India.

https://www.politico.eu/article/germany-wary-emmanuel-macron-space-force/

Now you can see why I am concerned about these space force units….they will violate treaties signed in the 1960s….let me help…..https://2009-2017.state.gov/t/isn/5181.htm

Please read the treaty and tell me that we are NOT violating it….but in case there is any confusion…..

The treaty’s key arms control provisions are in Article IV. States-parties commit not to:

  • Place in orbit around the Earth or other celestial bodies any nuclear weapons or objects carrying WMD.
  • Install WMD on celestial bodies or station WMD in outer space in any other manner.
  • Establish military bases or installations, test “any type of weapons,” or conduct military exercises on the moon and other celestial bodies.

When I post on the space stuff I reference the Outer Space Treaty a lot…..so I feel I need to dedicate a post to this document so my readers can better understand where I come from….Date TBA…..

But if space is not your thing….12,000 lies, many many golf trips costing millions each and but Obama was ruining the country…..missiles in the Sea of Japan…..Afghans walk…..playing tanker bingo……255 mass shootings in 2019……the race is on.

My day is begins.

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

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Space Tech

I am one of the few bloggers that are watching the region we call space for I believe it will become more important than it is today.

For over a year I have been a member of Dr. Parcak’s “Global Explorer” program…..it is taking satellite images and looking for the possibilities of archeological sites yet undiscovered…..

The human story—the story of us—is evolving at breakneck speed thanks to new technologies. Armed with new data sets, we can spin fresh tales that bring us closer to getting more right than wrong about our ancestors and ourselves.

What we can find with new technologies such as satellite imagery is simply astounding. It is helping us rewrite history. We’ve gone from mapping a few dozen ancient sites in one summer-long archaeological season to mapping hundreds, if not thousands, of sites in weeks. With advances in computing and artificial intelligence, we are on the verge of achieving those same results in a few hours.

In case you want to be an archaeologist and are worried that we space archaeologists will find everything first, fear not. Knowing the location of an ancient site is only the first step. We still have to survey sites on the ground, a process known as ground-truthing, and then undertake years of excavation to get a better understanding of what is there. And wow, do we have a lot of work to do.

How Space Technology is Revolutionizing Archaeology

That’s the premise that has guided Sarah Parcak in her career as an archaeologist who relies on remote sensing data gathered by airplanes, satellites and unpiloted drones. Observations from these systems can help scientists tap into visual cues that are invisible on the ground — and in turn, find long-lost traces of humans who lived millennia before we took to the skies

https://www.space.com/archaeology-from-space-sarah-parcak-book.html

Dr. Parcak is making history with her research in space tech…..

For almost 20 years, Sarah Parcak, professor of anthropology at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, has combed through satellite images of Egypt and the Middle East to find clues to ancient landscapes.

Parcak’s resume is impressive. She won the $1 million 2016 TED prize, has written a seminal textbook on satellite archaeology, as well as numerous other scholarly publications on the topic.

https://www.natureasia.com/en/nmiddleeast/article/10.1038/nmiddleeast.2017.132

That is my day on this Sunday…looking for sites yet undiscovered.

What does your day hold?

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

“et calamum quad lingua autem animi”  (The pen is the tongue of the mind…..or something like that)

Stuff For A Saturday

I have a wealth of thoughts I want to get out there……but time keeps sneaking up on me and events are spiraling…..

A few things that piss me off…..it is the Sahara not the Sahara Desert….for the word Sahara means desert…I hate redundancies

I like BBQ once in awhile…..I use the sauce for a dunking sauce for grilled meat and this one is pretty good in my opinion (no compensation involved)…..

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But I hate a con job…..the label says made with Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey…..but look at the back side of the same bottle…..

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NON-ALCOHOLIC….artificial whiskey flavor…..what part of that is made with Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey?

Can I sue?

Next, Hummus is an Arabic word meaning chick pea…..so there is no red pepper hummus if it is made from anything other than chick peas then it is a freakin’ dip.

Finally those people that equate prawns with shrimp…STOP IT! They are not the same! Prawns live in freshwater and shrimp in salt…,so stop calling large shrimp prawns…that is fake news.

I will stop the bitching and get to it……

There is research that is saying that the mind drugs from the 60s may well be beneficial for such ailments as PTSD, etc…..I tried to keep my readers informed about this research…..

https://lobotero.com/2019/02/02/freaky-saturday-02feb19/

https://lobotero.com/2019/02/23/freaky-saturday-2019-part-2/

The research continues and the results seem to be promising…..

Scientists are testing the impact on brain function of small regular doses of LSD in what they say is a “renaissance” for psychedelic drugs.

In one of the first studies of its kind, Dutch researchers are testing whether ‘microdosing’ with the illegal drug enhances mental performance and mood.

Significantly, the doses are too low to induce hallucinations.

They hope their research could ultimately lead to new, more effective treatments for depression, anxiety and even chronic pain.

https://news.sky.com/story/therapeutic-value-of-psychedelic-drugs-examined-11777072

Speaking of brain control or is it mind control?

Beware of your mobile phone….say what?

In a new study, researchers have invented a device that can control neural circuits using a tiny brain implant controlled by a smartphone.

The finding can speed up efforts to treat brain diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, addiction, depression, and pain.

The research was conducted by a team in Korea and the United States.

The device uses Lego-like replaceable drug cartridges and powerful Bluetooth low-energy to target specific neurons in the brain.

The wireless neural device enables chronic chemical and optical neuromodulation that has never been achieved before.

Scientists can use smartphone to manipulate your brain

Get off that phone and read a book or talk wigth your kids.

So much for my random thoughts for the day and my small bitches that I feel I must air.

Peace Out!

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Saturday Thoughts

Once again the weekend has broken and I had nothing unusual on which to post……so scramble was on to find that certain special post.

Racism has been in the news quiet often……but how far does our thoughts on color actually go?

It seems that we would apply our racial stereotypes to robots as well……

study published by New Zealand’s University of Canterbury reported that humans tend to apply their racial biases to white and black robots. 

The study, “Robots and Racism,” conducted by New Zealand’s Human Interface Technology Laboratory, indicated people ascribe racial backgrounds to human-like robots and apply racial stereotypes accordingly.

If proliferation of robots increases, this association could present a serious issue, according to the study.

“If robots are supposed to function as teachers, friends, or carers, for instance, then it will be a serious problem if all of these roles are only ever occupied by robots that are racialized as White,” it states.

https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/455832-study-finds-humans-apply-racial-stereotypes-to-white-and-black

And people say it is getting better on the racial front…..reality says no way……

How about those brains?

I knew all along that I was special…..

Which river passes through Madrid? What year did the Spanish Civil War end? Some people seem to have the answer to every trivia question you throw at them. What sets these people apart from others, though? Not all that surprisingly, it has to do with their brains. A new study found that people with great general knowledge also have efficiently wired brains.

“Although we can precisely measure the general knowledge of people and this wealth of knowledge is very important for an individual’s journey through life, we currently know little about the links between general knowledge and the characteristics of the brain,” says Dr. Erhan Genç from the Department of Biopsychology in Bochum.

Genç and colleagues performed brain scans on 324 volunteers using a special technique called diffusion tensor imaging, which reconstructs the pathways of nerve fibers. Imagine your brain as a tangled network of roads and highways; this method can provide a map of this network.

The brains of people with excellent general knowledge are more efficiently wired

Time for me to give MoMo the attention she demands…..have a good day and a better tomorrow.

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

A Sunday Thought

There is one last thought on this Sunday……

I am not a fan of shrinks whether medical or PhD……I believe their usefulness is been greatly exaggerated…….it comes from TV shows like Criminals Minds and such all about the profiling of criminals……then there is the use of drugs on our kids by these “professionals” that diagnose all sorts of ailments that need treatment…..

So when I read a report about their “science” could be a waste of time……I thought ah ha!

The study, led by researchers from the University of Liverpool, involved a detailed analysis of five key chapters of the latest edition of the widely used Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM), on ‘schizophrenia’, ‘bipolar disorder’, ‘depressive disorders’, ‘anxiety disorders’ and ‘trauma-related disorders’.

Diagnostic manuals such as the DSM were created to provide a common diagnostic language for mental health professionals and attempt to provide a definitive list of mental health problems, including their symptoms.

The main findings of the research were:

  • Psychiatric diagnoses all use different decision-making rules
  • There is a huge amount of overlap in symptoms between diagnoses
  • Almost all diagnoses mask the role of trauma and adverse events
  • Diagnoses tell us little about the individual patient and what treatment they need

The authors conclude that diagnostic labeling represents ‘a disingenuous categorical system’.

https://neurosciencenews.com/meaningless-psychiatric-diagnosis-14434/

All I can say at this point….”I told you so”!

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

That Saturday News

It was usually cool for late July in the Deep South but that has been replaced with the more traditional heat and humidity.

Saturday is the day when I give news that is news that NO one hears or sees or reads and most importantly no one cares……this Saturday it is more Space News…..

Since we just celebrated the 50 year anniversary of the Moon Landing I have more news of Apollo 11…….

On July 20, 1969, astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on Earth’s moon for the first time in human history. Four days later, they — along with Apollo 11 command module pilot Michael Collins — were locked up on an American battleship in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

The triumphant astronauts were in quarantine. Per a NASA safety protocol written half a decade earlier, the three lunar visitors were escorted directly from their splashdown site in the central Pacific to a modified trailer aboard the USS Hornet, where a 21-day isolation period began. The objective? To ensure that no potentially hazardous lunar microbes hitchhiked back to Earth with them. [5 Strange, Cool Things We’ve Recently Learned About the Moon]

Of course, as NASA quickly confirmed, there were no tiny aliens lurking in the astronauts’ armpits or in the 50 pounds (22 kilograms) of lunar rocks and soil they had collected. But despite this absence of literal extraterrestrial life, the Apollo 11 astronauts still may have succeeded in bringing aliens back to Earth in another way that can still be felt 50 years later.

https://www.space.com/moon-brought-aliens-to-earth.html

Will children born in space actually be human or not?

The first step to human colonization of the universe is fairly straightforward: we need to figure out how to get people to Mars and beyond.

But evolutionary biologist Scott Solomon isn’t terribly concerned with how humans plan to explore the universe. Instead, he’s focused his attention on what might happen to our species once we settle into our off-world homes. His surprising conclusion: future human colonists might not be humans at all.

“Eventually,” he recently told Business Insider, “people living in space could evolve to be different enough from people on Earth that we would consider them to be different species.”

https://futurism.com/the-byte/biologist-space-birth-babies-not-human

Word is that the Earth is littered with small cones from space…..to what end?  (A Doctor Who episode comes to life?)

Earth is littered with cones from space, and it’s our planet’s own fault.

Most meteorites found on Earth are just randomly shaped blobs. But a surprisingly high number of them, about 25%, are cone-shaped when you fit all their pieces back together. Scientists call these conical space-stones “oriented meteorites.” And now, thanks to a pair of experiments published online today (July 22) in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), we know why: The atmosphere is carving the rocks into more aerodynamic shapes as they fall to Earth.

https://www.space.com/space-cones.html

The small IST news round-up is finished and now it is time for MoMo to have that bath….not her favorite thing to do.

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Have a great day and enjoy your weekend.

Is It Deja Vu or Vuja De?

Sunday and I want to wax psychological.

Most of us know what is meant by Deja vu….or do we?

After I graduated from college, I backpacked around Europe with a few friends. It was the first time I went to Europe. Our first day in Athens, we got off a bus, and suddenly I was standing in front of a restaurant and shop, and I was sure that I had been there before. I knew that I hadn’t been there, of course, but it was a powerful experience of déjà vu.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/ulterior-motives/201001/what-is-d-j-vu

There are ways that your brain processes the phenom of Deja Vu…..

If you’ve ever had déjà vu — that feeling that what you’re currently doing has already happened — then you know it can feel like being in the twilight zone. However, there are things your brain is trying to tell you when you experience déjà vu. While déjà vu can make you feel like you’ve known someone, or been somewhere, in a past life, it might be all in your head, according to science. This actually makes me feel kind of bummed, because I like the idea of past lives. Scientific American reported that small seizures in the brain responsible for memory formation and retrieval could be the reason something suddenly feels familiar despite your having never experienced it before.

“With déjà vu, a brief synaptic misfiring might occur in these areas, creating the illusion that the event has occurred before,” Alan Brown, professor in the department of psychology at Southern Methodist University, Dallas, told Scientific American. These mini seizures are nothing to worry about, and Psychology Today noted that up to 70 percent of people report experiencing déjà vu, which is French for “already seen.” If you’re one of them, there might be some things your brain is trying to tell you when you’re experiencing déjà vu.

https://www.bustle.com/p/9-things-your-brain-is-trying-to-tell-you-when-you-experience-deja-vu-8334677

Now you know!

What does Vuja De mean?

It is a feeling…… “something like this has never happened before”

Time to sit back with a cold beer and watch my friend MoMo go about stalking that squirrel in the middle of the yard….she is a source of amusement….and a major irritant to the damn squirrel.

Have a day…..

“Lego Ergo Scribo”