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Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Posts Tagged ‘space travel

[BLOG] Some Thursday links

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  • Centauri Dreams looks at how the inability to make contact with the long-departed ISEE-3 probe offers hints as to the problems with long-duration spaceflight.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze considers Beta Pictoris’ planets, one paper considering the orbit of Beta Pictoris b and another wondering if the identified planet might in fact be massive dust clouds from planetesimal collisions.
  • The Dragon’s Tales explores the latest in Ukraine.
  • Far Outliers notes the collapse of Japanese forces in Papua New Guinea, from Phillip Bradley’s Hell’s Battlefield (1, 2, 3).
  • A Fistful of Euros’ Alex Harrowell considers the extent to which electronic communications are compromisable.
  • The Planetary Society Blog celebrates Yuri’s Night, an upcoming celebration of spaceflight on the 12th of this month.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer wonders how many Salvadorans were displaced from Honduras after the Soccer War of 1968 and considers certain parallels in ethnic minority politics between French Algeria and Russian Crimea.
  • Strange Maps notes that Portugal’s territory is almost entirely water, a combination of its extensive coastline, associated seas, and dispersed archipelagos.
  • Transit Toronto notes that the stretch of Yonge subway by Eglinton will be closed down this Saturday owing to emergency repairs.
  • Whatever’s John Scalzi describes the many ways in which he has sold his books.
  • Window on Eurasia argues that Kazakhstan is taking greater care regarding the Russian language after Crimea, and notes pressures in Kyrgyzstan.

    [BLOG] Some Wednesday links

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    • Bad Astronomy’s Phil Plait revisits the skydiver/meteorite video. It looks like it was just a rock in the chute.
    • Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly writes about the benefits of leaving one’s comfort zone.
    • At False Steps, Paul Drye presents the life of Mercury capsule designer Max Faget.
    • A Fistful of Euros’ Doug Merrill warns (1, 2) about the growing scope of Russia’s actions in Ukraine.
    • The Financial Times‘ Gideon Rachman argues that Russia under Putin is trying to destroy the current Ukrainian state.
    • Joe. My. God. notes that the two daughters of Lyndon Baines Johnson think that American president would likely support same-sex marriage based on his principles.
    • At Lawyers, Guns and Money, Scott Lemieux celebrates the defeat of the Parti Québécois as something that would protect religious freedom.
    • Marginal Revolution hosts a discussion in the comments surrounding the economic policies of Narendra Modi, aspirant for the Indian presidency.
    • John Moyer writes about the virtues of revisiting some books (here, James Joyce’s Dubliners).
    • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer wonders if Russian expansion into Ukraine will encourage imperialism generally and wonders how the ZunZuneo social networking project in Cuba was supposed to prmote democracy.
    • At the Russian Demographics blog, the author notes that Russia stands out not only among European countries but among the BRICs.
    • Window on Eurasia holds that Ukrainian Muslims prefer Ukraine to Russia and argues in favour of a sustained policy of non-recognition of Crimea’s annexation.

    [BLOG] Some Thursday links

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    • At The Dragon’s Tales, Will Baird reports that Sweden and Finland, spooked by Crimea, are now contemplating NATO membership.
    • On a very different note, The Dragon’s Tales also notes that Saturn’s icy moon Enceladus, with a Europa-like ocean underneath, is perfectly suited for a space mission.
    • Lawyers, Guns and Money notes that workers are dying on World Cup construction sites in Brazil as well as in Qatar.
    • At the Planetary Society Blog, Emily Lakdawalla notes the very recent discovery of Kuiper belt object 2013 FY27, big enough to be a dwarf planet.
    • The Volokh Conspiracy links to a profile of the blog and its blogger in Tablet magazine.
    • Window on Eurasia has a series of links. One argues that Russia’s weakness not its strength motivated the move into Crimea, another argues that a Russian invasion of Ukraine would be a catastrophe and that the Russian government knows it, another observes Belarus’ alienation from federation with Russia.

    [BLOG] Some Wednesday links

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    • The Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly makes a case about the benefits of radical honesty.
    • At the Buffer, Belle Beth Cooper describes how she has streamlined her writing style.
    • The Dragon’s Tales notes that China’s space station isn’t doing much.
    • Eastern Approaches observes the continuing popularity of Polish populist Lech Kaczynski.
    • The Financial Times‘ The World blog notes the vulnerable popularity of UKIP’s Nigel Farage.
    • Geocurrents’ Asya Perelstvaig comments on the entry of Jewish businessman Vadim Rabinovich into the Ukrainian presidential contest.
    • Joe. My. God. is unconvinced by the suggestion that marriage equality means the end of gay bars.
    • Lawyers, Guns and Money’s Erik Loomis speculates about the responsibility of American consumers for air pollution in exporting Asia.
    • At the Planetary Society Blog, Constantine Tsang describes evidence for volcanism on Venus.
    • Savage Minds interviews one Laura Forlano on the intersections between anthropology and design.
    • Towleroad mourns the death of godfather of house music Frankie Knuckles.

    [BLOG] Some Saturday links

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    • Centauri Dreams examines a close-encounter solar probe.
    • Writing at The Dragon’s Tales, Will Baird has advice for Ukraine’s future. (Integrate into the EU, get Western help, avoid conflict in Crimea.)
    • The Dragon’s Gaze notes that signs of oxygen in a planetary atmosphere alone aren’t sure signs of life.
    • Far Outliers notes that the dense jungle of Melanesia’s island of New Britain was a great equalizer in combat.
    • Geocurrents’ Asya Perelstvaig has it with sloppy journalism in connections between Siberian and North American languages.
    • Joe. My. God. notes that at least some evangelical Christians are accepting that Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church is dead since it might make their own homophobia seem better.
    • Lawyers, Guns and Money corrects a hostile Crooked Timber post on Katy Perry.
    • pollotenchegg maps population change in Ukraine by province since independence. The west and centre experienced stability, even growth; the rest of the country, well.
    • Torontoist profiles an interesting-sounding mural commemorating Japanese history in Canada and Toronto on Queen Street West.
    • The Volokh Conspiracy introduces readers to Erik Jager’s Blood Royal, a reconstruction of a medieval murder investigation in Paris.
    • Window on Eurasia argues that Russia now lacks the European option of Ukraine.

    [NEWS] Some Friday links

    • io9 shares wonderful illustrations of Titan’s methane showlines.
    • The Atlantic Cities notes that the coastline of Louisiana is receding so quickly mapmakers are hard-pressed to keep up.
    • BusinessWeek wonders how great cities, like New York City or Rome, reconcile change and tradition.
    • Christianity Today features a Philip Jenkins article noting that the origins and alliances of the Crimean crisis can be traced back at least as far as the Crimean War.
    • Ha’aretz notes that Israelis are moving to Tel Aviv, abandoning peripheral areas (with large Arab population) like Galilee and the Negev.
    • MacLean’s notes that condo construction is set to boom in Toronto.
    • Tablet Magazine notes that Crimea, immediately after the Second World War, was positioned as a potential homeland for Soviet Jews.
    • According to Time, changes in Canadian immigration law may be discouraging rich Chinese immigrants.
    • Universe Today notes that China’s Yutu moon rover can’t properly move its solar panels.

    [BLOG] Some Thursday links

    • Andart’s Anders Sandberg links to an essay he co-wrote about human longevity. The lessons of centenarians are important, but they also indicate the problems with extended: the damage of ageing has to be slowed down or even repaired, somehow.
    • BlogTO has two photoposts about alternate subways in Toronto, one showing a 1913 proposal for a downtown route, the other examining the Lower Queen Station that could have anchored a Queen Street subway.
    • Crooked Timber and Lawyers, Guns and Money both go after Conor Friedersdorf’s article that doesn’t identify bigoted behaviour as bigoted.
    • The Dragon’s Gaze notes that the results of a search for exomoons, while not turning any up, has produced interesting data on planetary densities.
    • Eastern Approaches, looking to the examples of Arab Spring states, argues that Ukraine will have trouble getting back state assets appropriated by the Yanukovich elite.
    • Geocurrents wonders whether mealtimes in Spain are product of geography and climate.
    • Language Hat notes the disappearance of Yiddish as a major American language.
    • Marginal Revolution links to a paper asking whether too many cultural similarities can lead to interstate war and notes Ukraine’s weak post-Soviet economic growth.
    • The Planetary Society Blog features a Marc Rayman post talking about the Dawn probe’s maneuvering towards dwarf planet Ceres.
    • Steve Munro breaks down Toronto’s transit history into three different phases.
    • Torontoist goes into more detail about the school trustees who would like a crackdown on nudity at Pride.
    • Towleroad examines Liz Dahl, the second Russia Today anchor to quit on a live broadcast over Crimea.

    [BLOG] Some Tuesday links

    • Centauri Dreams’ Paul Gilster writes about a need for some paradigm to support extraterrestrial colonization.
    • At Crooked Timber, Henry Farrell is skeptical about the long-term environmental effects of the Crimea crisis, as domestic fracking in Europe will start looking to be more secure than Russian imports.
    • Eastern Approaches notes the support of Poland for Ukraine.
    • Far Outliers notes the plight of German ships, civilian and military, in the Pacific at the time the First World War was declared.
    • A Fistful of Euros links to the first George Bush’s infamous “Chicken Kiev” speech of 1991 counseling against Ukrainian independence.
    • Geocurrents’ Asya Pereltsvaig reviews recent media coverage of the Crimean crisis, and wonders about the consequences for Russia.
    • Marginal Revolution links to some recommended books, fiction and otherwise, on Crimea.
    • The Planetary Society Blog invites regular non-astronomers to join the hunt for an asteroid.
    • Otto Pohl places the issues of the Crimean Tatars in the context of the forcible homogenization of European nation-states. Other communities also vanished.
    • Towleroad notes Republican Congressman Steve King who apparently doesn’t believe in protecting LGBT right because it’s not immediately visible. (Like religion?)
    • The Volokh Conspiracy’s Ilya Somin argues that making Russian leaders pay personal costs, via passport bans and the like, is a good thing.

    [BLOG] Some Saturday links

    • BlogTO’s Derek Flack shares pictures of Toronto in the 1970s.
    • James Bow thinks, in response to discussion at Toronto city council, that the position of head of the TTC should be put up to a general election.
    • Centauri Dreams notes the ESA’s new PLATO planet-hunter telescope, positioned at the Earth-Sun L2 point, and features a guest post from J. N. Nielsen talking of the means by which life will be dispersed.
    • City of Brass’ Aziz Poonawalla is unsurprised by the recent finding that the NYPD’s spying on Muslims was legal.
    • Discover‘s D-Brief notes a very odd pulsar.
    • The Dragon’s Tales links to a paper wondering if the products of Europa’s geysers–including signs of life?–could be sampled by spacecraft.
    • Eastern Approaches notes Ukraine’s agony.
    • Geocurrents notes, in light of Spain’s recent law granting Sephardic Jews the right to gain Spanish citizenship, the vexed question of what Sephardim are.
    • Lawyers, Guns and Money notes a study chroniclingly state-by-state startling post-1979 increases in inequality in the US. (I fear a similar study from Canada.)
    • Marginal Revolution notes that Ukraine will see the next big financial crisis.
    • The Signal notes the exceptional fragility of the ageing rewritable CDs used to store WNYC’s radio programs.
    • Torontoist noted that Doug Ford won’t be running in the next provincial election as a candidate.
    • Understanding Society’s Daniel Little argues that narrative history should seek to explain underlying patterns to be useful.
    • Window on Eurasia speculates that Kazakhstan could lead the integration of the Turkic world.

    [BLOG] Some Wednesday links

    • The Dragon’s Tales notes that, to cut costs for its Ariane 6 rocket, the European Space Agency is no longer going to try to source parts for the Ariane 6 across its member-states, insteading aiming for more efficient distribution of suppliers.
    • Geocurrents’ Asya Pereltsvaig wonders about the consequences Spain’s offer of citizenship to the descendants of Jews deported in 1492 might have. How many will take up Spain on the offer?
    • Marginal Revolution’s Tyler Cowen is not a locavore at all.
    • The Planetary Society Blog’s Emily Lakdawalla wonders, with others, just what Mercury’s unique hollows are.
    • Strange Maps chronicles the “hippie trail”, a route popular with backpackers in the 1960s and 1970s that stretched from Europe through Turkey and Afghanistan towards Southeast Asia.
    • Towleroad notes the vicious homophobia of Gambian President Yahya Jammeh.
    • Understanding Society’s Daniel Little chronicles the not-entirely unreciprocated sympathy of Karl Marx for the liberator Abraham Lincoln.
    • The Volokh Conspiracy notes that immigration is unlikely to increase the size of the American welfare state. (If anything, as European rhetoric suggests, it might decrease it.)
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