A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Archive for September 2018

[BLOG] Some Sunday links

  • Bad Astronomer Phil Plait takes a look at the question of how far, exactly, the Pleiades star cluster is from Earth. It turns out this question breaks down into a lot of interesting secondary issues.
  • The Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly starts an interesting discussion around the observation that so many people are uncomfortable with the details of their body.
  • Centauri Dreams reports on the exciting evidence of cryovolcanism at Ceres.
  • The Crux reports on new suggestions that, although Neanderthals had bigger brains than Homo sapiens, Neanderthal brains were not thereby better brains.
  • D-Brief notes evidence that the ability of bats and dolphins to echolocate may ultimate derive from a shared gene governing their muscles.
  • Bruce Dorminey notes that astronomers have used data on the trajectory of ‘Oumuamua to suggest it may have come from one of four stars.
  • Far Outliers explores the Appalachian timber boom of the 1870s that created the economic preconditions for the famed feud between the Hatfields and the McCoys.
  • Language Hat notes the unique whistling language prevailing among the Khasi people living in some isolated villages in the Indian state of Meghalaya.
  • Lingua Franca, at the Chronicles, notes that the fastest-growing language in the United States is the Indian language of Telugu.
  • Jeremy Harding at the LRB Blog writes about the import of the recognition, by Macron, of the French state’s involvement in the murder of pro-Algerian independence activist Maurice Audin in 1958.
  • Tyler Cowen at Marginal Revolution praises the diaries of Mihail Sebastian, a Romanian Jewish intellectual alive during the Second World War
  • The New APPS Blog takes a look at the concept of the carnival from Bakhtin.
  • Gabrielle Bellot at NYR Daily considers the life of Elizabeth Bishop and Bishop’s relationship to loneliness.
  • Jason Davis at the Planetary Society Blog describes how CubeSats were paired with solar sails to create a Mars probe, Mars Cube One.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer considers some possible responses from the left to a conservative Supreme Court in the US.
  • Roads and Kingdoms takes a look at the challenges facing the street food of Xi’an.
  • Rocky Planet examines why, for decades, geologists mistakenly believed that the California ground was bulging pre-earthquake in Palmdale.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel examines how some objects called stars, like neutron stars and white dwarfs and brown dwarfs, actually are not stars.
  • Frank Jacobs at Strange Maps notes how China and Europe stand out as being particularly irreligious on a world map of atheism.
  • Window on Eurasia notes the instability that might be created in the North Caucasus by a border change between Chechnya and Ingushetia.
  • Arnold Zwicky shares some beautiful pictures of flowers from a garden in Palo Alto.

[PHOTO] A Bird’s Eye View of Toronto’s Downtown, from the northwest

This three-dimensional model of the city of Toronto, here photographed from the direction of the northwest, is a favourite thing for me to see whenever I visit Toronto City Hall. No matter that it is nearly three decades out of date, the tangible texture of this model and the obvious care for detail that went into its creation remain appealing.

A Bird's Eye View of Toronto's Downtown, from the northwest #toronto #nbto18 #nuitblanche #torontocityhall #3d #model #map

Written by Randy McDonald

September 30, 2018 at 9:15 am

Posted in Photo, Toronto

Tagged with , , ,

[PHOTO] Two sunflowers, Bartlett Avenue

Two sunflowers, Bartlett Avenue #toronto #dovercourtvillage #bartlettavenue #flowers #yellow #sunflower #latergram

Written by Randy McDonald

September 30, 2018 at 8:15 am

[URBAN NOTE] Five links for Nuit Blanche Toronto 2018 (#nbto18)

  • Rosemary Heather at NOW Toronto identifies ten top shows for Nuit Blanche Toronto this night.
  • This Nuit Blanche will extend for the first time into Scarborough, with dozens of exhibits there. Global News reports.
  • Toronto Life lists six top sights for this year’s Nuit Blanche, here.
  • Michael Rancic at NOW Toronto identifies eight Nuit Blanche locations of particular interest to fans of music.
  • Trevor Dunn at CBC has recommendations for Nuit Blanche visitors, from things to see to the clothes one should wear.

Written by Randy McDonald

September 29, 2018 at 7:00 pm

[PHOTO] Fifteen photos of the Galleria Mall near its end

As the Galleria Mall winds down, many of its smaller independent stores still remaining planning to shut down and perhaps relocate this weekend, I thought I would visit this neighbourhood icon on this busy Saturday afternoon. The massive redevelopment planned may yet eradicate all physical traces of this build with its many arches and its orange-green colour scheme from the 1970s, but our memories of this space both personal and digital may yet survive the Galleria Mall’s end.

Closed shops #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall

Under the arch #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall #arch

Closing out sale #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall

Stripes and spaces to the north #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall

Stripes and spaces to the south #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall

Under the arch (2) #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall #arch

Fashion sale (1) #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall

Fashion sale (2) #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall

Fashion sale (3) #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall

Closed for business #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall #restaurant

Under the arch (3) #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall #arch

Under the arch (4) #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall #arch

Under the arch (5) #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall #arch

Real estate #toronto #galleriamall #wallaceemerson #shoppingmall #kiosks

Written by Randy McDonald

September 29, 2018 at 5:00 pm

[CAT] Five cat links: Port Hope, napping, cats vs. rats, Persian leopards, Gornick and Lessing

  • The small Ontario town of Port Hope has a cat café now, the Toe Beans Cat Caf○, open six days a week and housing cats looking for new homes. Global News reports.
  • This story of a Wisconsin man, a senior citizen, who comes in to a cat shelter to play and nap with the cats, is adorable. Global News reports.
  • Sarah Zhang at The Atlantic notes a new study in New York City that has found that city’s stray cats seem not to hunt adult rats. The rats are, simply, too big.
  • Erica Gies at The Crux describes the struggle to protect the Persian leopard of the Zagros Mountains, in the heart of divided Kurdistan.
  • Over at the NYR Daily, Vivian Gornick considers, in the light of the writings of Doris Lessing, her experiences living with cats. What sorts of beings are they? What do they think? How accurately do we observe them?

[CAT] Shakespeare, on his blanket

Shakespeare, on his blanket #toronto #dovercourtvillage #shakespeare #catsofinstagram #caturday #catstagram #white #blanket

Written by Randy McDonald

September 29, 2018 at 2:31 pm

Posted in Photo, Toronto

Tagged with , , ,

[NEWS] Five LGBTQ links: polyamory, Doctor Who, gay and undocumented, gaming, pop-ups

  • NOW Toronto considers the possibility of Canadian courts recognizing polyamorous families.
  • Hornet Stories takes a look at the history of queer Doctor Who characters.
  • Jose Munoz writes for Them about what it is like to be gay and undocumented in the United States.
  • Samantha Reidel at Them looks at ways that LGBTQ gamers are trying to change toxic elements in gaming culture.
  • The Conversation suggests that, at times when the established businesses of the gaybourhood are in decline, the more ephemeral pop-up can fill a very useful niche in LGBTQ culture.

[NEWS] Five links on cannabis and marijuana in Ontario and Canada

  • NOW Toronto speculates if tours of cannabis country, post-legalization, might be akin to–even compete with–tours of wine country in Ontario.
  • News that coffee chain Second Cup might want to convert some of its coffee stores over to cannabis retail is interesting. VICE reports.
  • The Conversation reports on the possibility that Ontario might have thousands of pot retailers.
  • MacLean’s offers guides, horticultural and otherwise, for people who might want to grow marijuana at home.
  • blogTO shares the details of the new marijuana laws in Ontario. Wow.

Written by Randy McDonald

September 28, 2018 at 9:30 pm

[ISL] Five islands links: Puerto Rico, Palau, Tonga, Tuvalu, Trinidad

  • GQ reports on how Puerto Rico has managed to become a favoured legal home for the super-rich via its tax codes, here.
  • The example of Palau, hit by a collapse in Chinese tourism after its government displeased Beijing, shows the problems of depending on China. Reuters reports.
  • The SCMP notes how the prime minister of Tonga has demanded more respect from Chinese for Pacific island nations, especially in connection to debts, here.
  • This photo essay in The Atlantic shows the impact of sea level change on fragile Tuvalu, barely above sea level even now.
  • The NYR Daily reports on the experiences and art of Chris Ofili now that he is based in Trinidad.