Saturday, September 29, 2012

Sometimes I Take Pictures

Another big moth-thing my friend found the other day, I have no idea what type this one is.


Captain Disillusion: Real Phaser Reverse Debunk

 Posted by YouTube user: CaptainDisillusion

Harvard Researchers Create "Cyborg Flesh"

Posted by YouTube user: BlankTV

According to an article in last month's Harvard Gazette, researchers at the university recently managed to successfully merge human tissues with embedded nanoelectronics, effectively creating what's being described as "cyborg flesh". I prefer the term "Terminator Meat", personally. But I doubt that phrase will catch on, given the scientific community's stubborn refusal to admit it's intention to build cybernetic death machines; not to be confused with Austrian Death Machine (see above). Also, now that I've read it back to myself, I've remembered how easy it is to make any phrase involving the word "meat", into something unintentionally dirty. Still, I think either term is technically correct, so use at your discretion.

Whatever you decide to call it, the tissue in question was created by developing what is essentially a rudimentary artificial autonomic nervous system, in the form of "Macroporous nanowire nanoelectronic scaffolds"; from the Harvard Gazette:
"Beginning with a two-dimensional substrate, researchers laid out a mesh of organic polymer around nanoscale wires, which serve as the critical sensing elements. Nanoscale electrodes, which connect the nanowire elements, were then built within the mesh to enable nanowire transistors to measure the activity in cells without damaging them. Once completed, the substrate was dissolved, leaving researchers with a netlike sponge, or a mesh, that can be folded or rolled into a host of three-dimensional shapes."

The most immediate use for the nanoscaled network of silicone wires and electrodes designed by the team, according to research leader Charles M. Lieber, is in the pharmaceutical industry, where it could be used to more precisely study how newly developed drugs act in three-dimensional tissues. But the development of even a basic electronic sensory system small enough, not only to be embedded into human tissues without distorting cell structure, but that could potentially be an early precursor to a system capable of being integrated directly into the body's own electrical and sensory system, is a pretty spectacular thing.

"The current methods we have for monitoring or interacting with living systems are limited," said Lieber. "We can use electrodes to measure activity in cells or tissue, but that damages them. With this technology, for the first time, we can work at the same scale as the unit of biological system without interrupting it. Ultimately, this is about merging tissue with electronics in a way that it becomes difficult to determine where the tissue ends and the electronics begin."

Whatever it's intended practical use or current level of functionality, with even the Harvard Gazette itself throwing around words like "cyborg flesh", one can't help but imagine some future iteration of the technology in question, one day finding it's way on and into the human body in some way, shape, or form. Because one of the main hurdles in trying to fully merge mechanical systems into organic ones, is finding a way to integrate artificial control and sensory systems into the body's own biological ones. And while something that advanced is a far cry from the basic, research based functions of the nanoscale silicone network developed for this project, the idea that we live in a world in which "cyborg flesh" is a reality on any scale, is a pretty amazing thing to consider.

Also, our robot-death-cheetahs look cold, and they want skin.

Posted by YouTube user: BostonDynamics

Sunday, September 16, 2012

This Week's Brushes Doodle: Skerah - The Anti-You

"Skerah /Scare-Ah"- The Anti-you
 Haven't posted one of these in a while. So if you don't know, while this one actually started as a regular sketch, I then finished and then "inked" in App, the artwork I typically post on the site is done using the Brushes app for iPhone. So, yes, I did all of this using my finger on a tiny touchscreen, which is still no excuse for my lack of ability.As for today's offering-

This week's Brushes doodle MAY, in fact, be inspired by my friend Tara, who is far more awesomer than my substandard character drawing of her may indicate. I obviously didn't quite finish it, and there are a variety of things I would like to fix, but, I've been trying to push myself to get at least one drawing done a week and the week is nearly over, so. Also, it's important to note that she does not actually have giant misshapen man hands or a huge ET head and neck, I'm just a hack when it comes this whole drawing thing.


"Ultra"-HD Render Of Curiosity's descent in 30FPS With (Fake) Sound


This version of Curiosity's descent and landing was created by film maker Bard Canning, using HD stills from Curiosity's Mars Descent Imager (MARDI), as well as hundreds of motion tracking shots; which basically just means digitally moving and zooming the camera to make up for missing frames, in order to increase the video's frame rate from a blistering 4 FPS to 30. The images in the film were enhanced and color corrected for the sake of quality, and the sound, obviously, was added for effect. Go HERE, For a more detailed explanation of the work that went into making this render of Curiosity's landing on Mars.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Because I Can: Hate Eternal- Lake Ablaze

Been a while since I terrified and repelled you with one of my favorite things. So please enjoy ignoring, reviling, and or dismissing as mindless noise, the above song from Hate Eternal.

That is All.


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Eye Candy: Long Exposure Photo Of Moth Flight

Image Credit: STEVE IRVINE

"Fluttering wings leave lacy trails as moths beat their way to a floodlight on a rural Ontario lawn. The midsummer night’s exposure, held for 20 seconds, captured some of the hundreds of insects engaged in a nocturnal swarm."

FreddieW: Old School vs. New School

Posted by YouTube user: freddiew

Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Anyone

Posted by YouTube user: bigthink

Last week, a website called Big Think, released the above video, in which Bill Nye shares some of his thoughts on why creationism is not an appropriate thing to teach children to believe. Not surprisingly, this prompted a predictable response from both sides of the..issue? Debate? No... Ummm.... AH: Prompting a predictable response from both sides of the ongoing commentary on the meaningless and distracting waste of time that is the non-theory of creationism and intelligent design, and the non existent scientific controversy over evolution. Which the creators of said non-theory have deliberately manufactured, in order to try and keep their nonsensical, simpleminded little fantasy about the nature of reality alive just a WEEeee-bit longer. Ya, that seems right. Unwieldy, yes. But right.

In case you don't know (are you new here?), creationism (young Earth creationism, creation science, intelligent design, ETC.) is a made up, pseudo-scientific means, of  attempting to prove a literal interpretation of the bible, through the age old  art of special pleading, and a little good ole fashioned misinformation, self-delusion, and denial. But -like every other established cell of the Abrahamic religions- intelligent designers aren't content to live in their own lukewarm pool of happy ignorance, and have spent the better part of the past 60 years or so, attempting to subvert science education, and even the public understanding of the basic words and terms associated with science, in order to wedge their personal religious beliefs into the public consciousness. Their tactic of choice for achieving this goal, has been through continued and still ongoing attempts to eliminate or at least retard the teaching of evolution in public schools, while deliberately re-branding and mislabeling their own biblically inspired belief system as a legitimate science. Which, not to spoil the ending for you, BUT- it isn't. 

Just in case I haven't been clear enough about my feelings on the subject yet, either here or in past writings, it's safe to say that I am not a fan of creationism/intelligent design; or whatever the hell it is they may be calling themselves this week, or at any point in the future. More to the point, it's one of the many worthless ideas in the world that I see as deserving of only ridicule, disrespect, and out right dismissal, as it is of absolutely no intellectual value whatsoever. I genuinely don't think I can make my feelings about it any more clear than that. And yes, the fact that it's a religious interpretation of reality doesn't win it any points, where my particular world view is concerned. But the real reason I think creationism deserving of  uninhibited criticism and attack, is the fact that it's creators and promoters openly and deliberately work to deny and disguise the religious nature of  their beliefs, in order to subvert the general public's understanding of the scientific facts of reality. Also, it's just silly.

Whatever your feelings on people's rights to their personal beliefs and interpretations of reality; and on a personal level, I'm fine with people believing whatever nutty thing they like, provided it doesn't impact my existence in any way shape or form; determining the value of creationism is simple. Your proposed model of reality is either, A: a personal philosophical view without need of outside verification. Or B: it's a scientific theory. You don't get to have it both ways. If it's a personal choice, then you are free to shield both it and yourself, from the facts which contradict it. But, if you choose to label what you believe a science, then it must stand up to critical scrutiny and the trials of the scientific method. If it cannot, and intelligent design (creationism, ETC.), can't, then it is not science.


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Pwnisher's Live action Sleeping Dogs Fight Film

Posted By Youtube user: pwnisher

So, the above video was created by YouTuber Clinton Jones (Pwnisher), and was based around the characters and themes of the video game Sleeping Dogs, which is an ultra violent GTA-style game set in Hong Kong, that was just recently released for the Xbox and Ps3. The budget for Clint and friend's Sleeping Dogs Fight Film was actually provided by Square Enix London Studios, who developed the game in conjunction with United Front Games, and the fight choreography was done by EMC Revolution.

Monday, September 3, 2012

First interactive color Panorama from Curiosity

Click HERE  for the full interactive Panorama.


This color panorama shows a 360-degree view of the landing site of NASA's Curiosity rover, including the highest part of Mount Sharp visible to the rover. That part of Mount Sharp is approximately 12 miles (20 kilometers) away from the rover.

The images were obtained by the rover's 34-millimeter Mast Camera. The mosaic, which stretches about 29,000 pixels across by 7,000 pixels high, includes 130 images taken on Aug. 8 and an additional 10 images taken on Aug. 18. These images were shot before the camera was fully characterized.

Scientists enhanced the color in one version to show the Martian scene as it would appear under the lighting conditions we have on Earth, which helps in analyzing the terrain. A raw version is also available.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Atheism BLECH

NEW RULE: If your philosophical differences to an "opposing" group can be summed up using a 30 year old comedy bit, your argument is officially invalid.

So at this point, the whole atheism plus debacle has been pretty well discussed and dissected by anyone with any interest in doing so, I'm not one of those people. Primarily because, there really isn't much to discuss where the group itself is concerned. Particularly since the groups "leaders" (founders, creators, divine movers, or whatever your adjective of choice may be) insist -when it suits their purposes- that they aren't really the leaders of a group, which -when it serves their purposes- they insist isn't REALLY even a group yet. Unless you attack or even mildly criticize said group that isn't a group. In which case, they are a group, and you're opposition to them clearly demonstrates you to be a close minded bully, foolishly resisting the will of social evolution which was itself responsible for beckoning said semi-corporeal social entity spontaneously into existence.

All of which, has predictably helped turn this whole thing into a muddled mess of name calling, nit picking, and posturing. One which serves only to completely distract and derail the conversation from the issues it was supposedly meant to draw attention to. Turning it instead, to attacking the personal agendas of all involved parties, for the sake of declaring who get's to be "right" and therefore- morally superior. Which is why, other than this entry, I'm opting out of the conversation- at least until there's something more specific to argue about. Because arguing over labels, is absurd, simple minded, divisive (which is another thing I'm not supposed to say) and self defeating.

On a more personal note, I choose to identify myself as an atheist, because I don't believe in god, nothing else. I do not consider myself to be part of any particular community or movement, nor do I want to be. In fact, I'm still not clear on what exactly that means. I mean, what's actually required for one to be considered a "member" of a community? Was I supposed to have been issued some sort of special decoder-ring or a laminated badge or something when I decided god probably wasn't really a thing and logic and reason was likely the best way for me to figure out the world? Are there special, secrete meetings or some kind of ceremony I'm supposed to attend? Or does simply holding any particular position or fitting someone else's definition of a specific category of person automatically make you a member?

Either way, I'm not good with conformity and I'm not interested in joining ANY of your little clubs.  If that means you're gonna tell all the other kids on the playground I'm a Dodie-face, as you take your ball and go home, I'm okay with that. Because, I'm used to feeling unwelcome, I always have. And honestly, at this point in my life- alone and on the outside of things, is where I feel most comfortable anyway.