A Supernova Cocoon Breakthrough
NASA – Observations with NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory have provided the first X-ray evidence of a supernova shock wave breaking through a cocoon of gas surrounding the star that exploded. This discovery may help astronomers understand why some supernovas are much more powerful than others.
On Nov. 3, 2010, a supernova was discovered in the galaxy UGC 5189A, located about 160 million light years away. Using data from the All Sky Automated Survey telescope in Hawaii taken earlier, astronomers determined this supernova exploded in early October 2010 (in Earth’s time-frame).
This composite image of UGC 5189A shows X-ray data from Chandra in purple and optical data from Hubble Space Telescope in red, green and blue. SN 2010jl is the very bright X-ray source near the top of the galaxy.
A team of researchers used Chandra to observe this supernova in December 2010 and again in October 2011. The supernova was one of the most luminous that has ever been detected in X-rays. more> http://tinyurl.com/bpe4u2w
By Paul Roderick Gregory – Headlines speak of bold agreements: “G-8 Leaders Agree to Mix Growth, Cuts” that closer reading reveals to be hot air. When German chancellor Angela Merkel injects the word “growth” into her remarks, the press breathlessly reports a weakening of her austerity stance. Barack Obama’s insistence on both growth and “fiscal discipline” resembles calls for motherhood and apple pie. The new French President Francois Hollande pushes a financial transactions tax and mutes his election rhetoric for stimulus. British Premier David Cameron nixes Hollande’s transaction tax post haste. Newly-inaugurated President Vladimir Putin boycotts the G-8 in a huff.
The EU crisis resembles mountain climbers, tied together by ropes, scaling a rocky cliff. One (Greece) is balanced on a thin ledge. A few others teeter perilously (Portugal, Spain, and Ireland). They know that if one falls, others could be pulled along. One the climbers (Germany) has a knife either to cut himself free or to sever the rope of climbers about to fall. The knife-wielder fears he could end up alone on the cliff. more> http://tinyurl.com/bt2bak3
Posted in Banking, Economy, Leadership, Media
Tagged Angela Merkel, Barack Obama, David Cameron, European Union, Financial crisis, François Hollande, Government, Leadership
CBS News – Peter Thiel, the billionaire venture capitalist, is beseeching students to drop out of a university system he says is broken — churning out too many half-educated graduates seeking too few jobs. Thiel put his money where his mouth is and pays selected students $100,000 each to drop out and focus on ideas that will benefit themselves and the world at large. Waiting for graduation, he says, is an expensive waste of time.
Peter Thiel: “We have a bubble in education, like we had a bubble in housing in the last decade. Everybody believed you had to have a house. They’d pay whatever it took. Today, everybody believes that we need to go to college, and people will pay whatever it takes.” more> http://tinyurl.com/7a8m5s6
By Simon Sharwood – IBM’s first tape drive turns 60 today, May 21st 2012.
The 726 used half-inch tapes with seven tracks. Six were used for data and the seventh was a parity track. Data was stored as six-bit characters, one to a track, for a total storage density of 100 bits per linear inch.
A unique control system developed for the 726” which meant “a tape reached full speed in 1/100th of a second, or before moving half an inch,” and important feature as the drive started and stopped during operations. Once the tape reached its top speed of 75 inches per second it could “read or write at a rate of 12,500 digits a second.” more> http://tinyurl.com/cs4bk74