"They found that 115,000 sq km (44,000 sq miles) of land is now covered in water and 173,000 sq km (67,000 sq miles) of water has now become land. The largest increase in water has been on the Tibetan Plateau, while the Aral Sea has been the biggest conversion of water to land. The team said many coastal areas have also changed significantly. [...] The researchers said Dubai's coast had been significantly extended, with the creation of new islands to house luxury resorts."
25 August 2016
The BBC's Rebecca Morelle spotlights Surface water shifting around the Earth as discovered by the Deltares Research Institute in the Netherlands...
24 August 2016
22 August 2016
20 August 2016
18 August 2016
15 August 2016
Jeff Lieberman is at it again, this time Kickstarting Slow Dance...
"A picture frame that makes real objects appear to move in slow motion. By taking advantage of the limits of human visual perception, this optical illusion sculpture appears to be doing the impossible -- right before your eyes. Slow Dance combines technology, science, and art, in order to remind us of the natural mystery, beauty, and wonder that surround us every day."
14 August 2016
08 August 2016
31 July 2016
The Economist spotlights The muzzle grows tighter on the scourge of anti-liberty cultural, religious, and legal muzzling of free speech. Vile governments, religious wingnuts of all flavors, authoritarian or conservative movements -- all evil and spreading...
23 July 2016
OpenMind shares 1816, the Year Without a Summer when...
"It snowed and froze in parts of Europe and North America. Crops were ruined, triggering the worst famine of the nineteenth century [and] became known as “the year without a summer,” a climatic anomaly that affected the northern hemisphere"We now know this is at least partly due to the massive Tambora volcanic eruption.
"Evidence of the long range of the emissions from Tambora has been found in the high sulphur content in samples of polar ice from the time, says paleoclimatologist Robert Mulvaney of the British Antarctic Survey [...] “Very large eruptions (such as Tambora) can lift material very high in the atmosphere, and into the stratosphere,” explains Mulvaney. “Once in the stratosphere, the sulfur dioxide can oxidise into sulphuric acid, which is taken up by tiny water droplets to form a haze in the stratosphere that can reflect incident sunlight back away from the Earth, causing less light to penetrate through the atmosphere, and the Earth to cool.” This sulphuric acid circulating in the stratosphere is then detected in ice cores. In this way, scientists can estimate the volume of emissions from an eruption."Here's the evidence showing it's happened at huge scale at least a couple times per century, so inquiring minds want to know "when's next"?
WaPo's Adam Taylor shares dataset about political coups since the 1950s compiled by political scientists Jonathan Powell and Clayton Thyne. By "coup" they mean illegal and overt attempts by the military or other elites within the state apparatus to unseat the sitting executive...
"Why did they have the first one? Coups also generally occur in disproportionately poor countries that suffer from other forms of political instability (such as protests and/or civil war). In recent years, there seems to be an increasing proportion of coups in new democracies, especially those that seem to already be backsliding toward authoritarianism. Ultimately, the legitimacy of the government is a crucial indicator."
15 July 2016
04 July 2016
Thanks to FEE's David D'Amato for reminding us that July 4th...
"Independence Day, presents an opportunity to reflect upon the principles immortalized in the Declaration -- principles that, if taken seriously, hold the seeds of sweeping political transformation. The declaration is not only radically libertarian, but radically decentralist."
25 June 2016
21 June 2016
Very interesting map of population density shown within sub-national territories (e.g. the 50 United States, the Lander in Germany, Provinces in South Africa, etc)...
14 June 2016
WOVNS is Kickstarting now to allow you to turn digital designs into custom short-run Jacquard-woven fabric!
"WOVNS is a platform that empowers everyone to create their own woven textiles. Unlike digital printing, weaving integrates a design into the very construction of the fabric, yielding a textile rich in both color and texture. WOVNS fabric is perfect for medium-weight apparel such as shorts, dresses, bags, and wraps, as well as home decor including upholstery, pillows, and throws. Or think of your own creative uses."