Friday, May 25, 2012

Words of the Day

four score: a score is twenty, four score equals eighty

The word score originates from Old English scoru "twenty," from Old Norse skor "mark, tally", in the sense of a shepherd making a mark on a tally stick when counting sheep. Its use in the Bible, is simply that of a common word at the time of translation then falling into disuse though language change.

fortnight:  a unit of time equal to fourteen days, or two weeks. The word derives from the Old English fÄ“owertyne niht, meaning "fourteen nights".

In astronomy, a fortnight is the mean (average) time between a full moon and a new moon (and vice versa) or half a synodic month. This is equal to 14.77 days.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Star Trekin'

Scotty beamed up!

James Doohan, best known as Scotty from Star Trek: The Original Series, spent much of his career playing a spacefaring hero. Yesterday he finally made it into orbit, seven years after his death.

Doohan's cremated ashes, along with those of about 300 other space enthusiasts, were included on a private spacecraft heading to the International Space Station. Space Exploration Technologies' Falcon 9 rocket is set to deliver equipment to the ISS, and had another mission.

Falcon 9 took a second stage layer that includes the lipstick-sized tubes of cremated remains, which will be released to orbit the Earth for approximately a year as a zero-G memorial, before being incinerated in the atmosphere. It cost approximately $3,000 per family to have the ashes included on the flight.

In addition to Doohan, the capsule also includes the remains of late Mercury astronaut Gordon Cooper, who died in 2004.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

What In the World

Picture of Earth showing if all Earth's water (liquid, ice, freshwater, saline) was put into a sphere it would be about 860 miles (about 1,385 kilometers) in diameter. Diameter would be about the distance from Salt Lake City, Utah to Topeka, Kansas, USA. Credit: Illustration by Jack Cook, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (©); Howard Perlman, USGS.

The water ball is actually much larger than it looks like on your computer monitor because we're talking about volume, a 3-dimensional shape, but trying to show it on a flat, 2-dimensional screen or piece of paper. That tiny water bubble has a diameter of about 860 miles, meaning the height (towards your vision) would be 860 miles high, too!

edit: just posted, noticed Astronomy POD has same pic :]

In 2007, a member of discovered while walking the halls of the Missouri Hall of Fame, that Dred Scott, a  slave who unsuccessfully sued for his freedom in 1857, was not represented. This fact was challenged by Steven Tilley, a republican state representative, but he found it to be true. On May 9, 2012, during a public ceremony at the Missouri State Capital a bust of Dred Scott was included.

Seems no five year wait, for Rush Limbaugh was necessary. Amid controversy, on May 14, 2112 Rush was included in the Hall of FShame. This was a private ceremony, announced 20 minutes before, and the public and Democratic lawmakers were not allowed into the chambers of the House of Representatives, which were locked and guarded by armed members of the Missouri Highway Patrol while the ceremony took place.

Also in a public ceremony, on Feb. 27, 2012, John Jordan “Buck” O’Neil was inducted. John started as a first baseman for the Memphis Red Sox in the inaugural season of the newly-formed Negro American League.He was the first Africa-American coach in Major League Baseball history for the Chicago Cubs.

Gypsy girl closed on a home today. See how deep these roots grow...