Alternate History Thursday: Flat World

We know that the world isn’t flat, but an oddly ball shaped sphere.  But in a suitable alternate reality, the world is a cube, or a diamond, or, for the most part, 2 dimensional.  The 2 dimensional world is actually 3 dimensional, but that’s just to make it easier for us in our ball world to grasp what life is like.

There are 2 sides to this flat world, the layout of the continents is generally the same, except for the poles.  There are no poles.  Also, the planet splits in the middle of the oceans, just like the giant waterfall you’d think.  Depending on which direction you’re going, the water either falls, or rises.  Going west from California, the water falls somewhere in the middle of the Pacific, there’s no real good place to map it to on our globe.  Anyway, the water falls, and enters the middle of the planet.  Due to the strong forces at play, we don’t really know much about what happens on the inside of the planet.  Presumably, the water travels through the middle of the planet through a series of pipes, eventually being forced out of key locations on the planet.  The vast majority of the water makes it to the Atlantic Ocean, where from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, it flows up into the Atlantic.  This is all looking from Alpha side (The side with America on it).  Looking at Beta side, Europe, Asia & Africa, the water flows from The Mediterranean, into the Atlantic, then it falls into the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, through another series of pipes that pop up in Europe, then out on the other side flowing into the Beta Half of The Pacific Ocean.

It has been theorized that one could travel through these skyscraper sized pipes through the middle of the planet.  One un-manned submarine managed to make it 117 miles into the the Beta Atlantic Pipe before something crushed it, and all data stopped being returned.  The last thing seen was a massive wall, full of windows.  There are dozens of hypothesis as to what this wall was, the most popular being a filter.  What this filter is for is another question, along with how it gets cleaned.  Every year hundreds of people waste billions of dollars preparing ships, and research into the abyss.  Perhaps next time, we’ll have some more to go over.

In Ball World, this is how countries line up across from each other:

Countries Lined up

{imgur|Geeko Logie}

Telescope Time-lapse

Photographer Kenneth Brandon has taken a new kind of Time-lapse of the amazing night sky.  Usually, these are wide view shots of the entire sky, sometimes with some foreground to show the vastness of space.  Well, instead of the usual, he decided to attach a camera piggy-back on his 11 inch telescope.  This gives wide field of view of what the entire sky is like, but also shows how the motorized tracking mount keeps everything aligned so that he doesn’t get star trails.

For someone who isn’t aware of how these beautiful time-lapses are made, this is a good video to show you how the scope, or camera lens stays pointed and focused on a single point in the sky as time goes by.  You also see why most time-lapses have an ever creeping view upwards.

All in all, it’s a nice educational video, and again, worth the 1 and a half minutes of your life to look over.  Additionally, if you have some time to kill (and you do if you’re reading this post), check out some of the other videos on his Time-Lapse Channel, they are fun to watch.

{Peta Pixel}

Lake Clark National Park

Upper Twin Lake
Upper Twin Lake, NPS

Lake Clark marks the 4th profile of the National Parks of Alaska.  We’re halfway through the state, but these next few are difficult.  Lake Clark National Park & Preserve protects just over 4 million acres of land, for comparison purposes, that’s just about double the size of Yellowstone.  Yet, it got just 16,000 visitors in 2014.  That’s not a lot of people for such a large area.  Compared to Denali, it’s about a million acres larger, but get’s 1/30 the number of visitors.  Part of that is due to the remoteness of it.

Lake Clark is only about 100 miles south west of Anchorage, but those are miles as the crow flies, which, is the only way to access the park.  There are no roads to Port Alsworth Alaska, population 159.  You have to fly in.  You could take a boat I guess, but flying is easier.  From this little town, you have many jumping off points into the park itself.  Lake Clark is a 40 mile long, 5 mile wide main attraction.  It’s right at the gateway to the park in Port Alsworth, there are a few established trails you can go on to the lake shore, and a waterfall, otherwise, the remainder of the park is wilderness, and the easiest way to get around is via float plane.

You can kayak around Lake Clark, or one of the many other lakes in the park, and in the Preserve section, you can hunt and fish.  The edges of the park located on the Cook Inlet are in prime Bear Viewing territory, not as popular as Katmai, but much more intimate, if you can manage to get there that is.

Dick Proenneke's Cabin
Dick Proenneke’s Cabin

One of the most famous residents of the Lake Clark area was Richard, (Dick), Proenneke.  In the late 1960s, Dick Proenneke retired and settled into the Twin Lakes region of Alaska.  There he built his own log cabin by hand using materials he scavenged from the land.  He kept meretricious journals, and filmed the whole process as he slowly built up his own log cabin home.  This footage has been released as a documentary, Alone in the Wilderness, you should watch it, it’s pretty amazing, here’s an excerpt from it:

Dick lived up in the Twin Lakes region, which is in north of Lake Clark, and the easiest way to get there is via float plane.  The National Park Service keeps his original log cabin maintained, and offers guided tours of the area, if you can get up there that is.  And you should, because the Twin Lakes region is what the top photo looks like, beautiful turquoise lakes with mountains on all sides, and that’s just during the short summer months.  In the winter, if you feel like getting up there, the scenery is even more beautiful.

I think Lake Clark is one of the more hidden gems of the National Park System, and hopefully my trip up there next summer will prove me right.

The Ocean Maker

You really should watch this 10 minute short film called The Ocean Maker:

It’s short, there’s no dialog, but it’s touching.  There’s just enough story to get the general idea of what’s going on, mixed in with just enough plot.  Additionally, it was made in just under 2 months on an Island in the Caribbean.  It looks like it takes place in Australia though.  It reminds me of the reverse of Water World.  I hope that they submit this for the 2016 Oscars.  It’s perfect for the short animated feature category.

{The Cloud Appreciation Society}

Action Figure Lamp

Action Figure Lamp final

Remember the Star Wars lamp from earlier this month?  Well, here’s a general Action Figure Lamp.  Well, Jessy, of Making Jiggy, has made her own similar lamp, but this time, out of regular Action Figures.  Jessy has decided to put together an instructable on the whole process.  It clocks in at 8 steps long, but again, it’s not too difficult, the hardest part is deciding what action figures to sacrifice for this noble lamp.

Action Figure Lamp Raw

There’s a few things to take into account when making this type of lamp, mainly the types of plastic the action figures are made of, but with some careful planning, and checking, you should be able to secure everything.  I have to say though, I don’t like the raw version with all the colors, it’s far too busy.  Spray painting it Gold really works for it.

Here’s a close up of the top area, with the light on:

lamp closeup

Impressive Fish Tank

Fish Tank

I’ve posted before about cool fish tanks, but this one reminds me of the House Sized one from years ago.  There’s alot of negativity about this fish tank, mainly around the impossibility it would be to clean, but also ranging from the fake coral that the CSIs at reddit are 111% sure exists.  Also the “poorly” designed table section where it’s impossible to tell from this single angle if the top is part of the tank, or insulated from the tank.

Personally, I think it’s cool, and if I had money, and a large enough love of fish, I would consider something like this.  But I’d much prefer an extravagant pond in the back yard than an aquarium inside.

Jurassic Park Fridge

Jurassic Park Games 1

This auction may have just ended, (which is interesting, because it says it ends on June 22, 2015, which is in the future from today) but I’m sure you can contact the winning bidder and try and get some of these cartridges, afterall, what are they going to do with them?

To answer your first question, yes, that is a refrigerator full of Jurassic Park Super Nintendo game cartridges.  But, not only that, there are also some GameBoy games, and various Sega generation games.  There is also a half empty bottle of Rum.  That is not for sale, neither is the firdge, only the games, which number about 300, and have been being collected for about 3 years now.

The seller answers the question of why the best:

There have been a number of questions regarding this posting, and they all tend to revolve around the question “Why?”, besides the members who are punny and saying its cool in the fridge and one fellow telling me he loved me, which I responded telling him that I loved him as well. Regardless, the question of “Why?” is a very legitimate question in almost every way, so I will answer it here and post it on the eBay listing. Why do I have sooo many Jurassic park carts for the Super Nintendo? – Because it’s fun. Because I have fun collecting them and posting random pictures of them in my bathtub or in my fridge.

When I take a look at collecting and ask myself why I collect old video games, I come to the conclusion that the reason we collect at all is because we have fun doing it. Most people try and collect every title for a particular system, or if you want to go hard, multiple systems. And that’s great, if thats what they have fun doing, more power to them. Personally, I got bored collecting with the intention of going for a complete library for a certain system. I wanted to do something different.

Why did this happen (How did it get to this point)? – In 2012 I had an opportunity to buy out a portion of a game store. It was there in the basement of this old store that I had the opportunity to purchase a number of Jurassic Park carts i.e. 120ish. I said, “why not, that could be fun”. I posted the haul on NintendoAge, and goodness, did things escalate quick. Soon I had 200, then 250, and now right around 300. I traded people for them, did some auctions where members bid using jurassic park games as currency, and some kind guys and gals even donated to the cause.

Why sell them now? – There is no reason per say as to why sell them now. I have had a lot of fun with them, and this is an opportunity for me to share the fun I’ve had. It’s also an opportunity for me to possibly pass the torch so another can share the fun and maybe add to it. If any soul dares that is!

Jurassic Park Games up close

This isn’t the first time Jurassic Park has been represented on eBay.  Remember last year the R/V from The Lost World: Jurassic Park was put up on eBay for $15k.

{reddit}

LEGO Train Coffee Table

LEGO Table final

Another DIY post courtesy of reddit, this time stubbornmoose has made a coffee table out of maple and walnut, but with LEGO baseplates on the top so that his kids can set up a LEGO town on it.  That is a great idea.

LEGO Table open

Were you aware that you can buy giant LEGO baseplates from slabdreamlab?  Giant ones, with designs on them, normal roads, space, or regular old solid colors, all up to 48″x24″.  That’s gigantic.  I don’t know what I would use them for, maybe that dream of making a scale model of some movie scene, or location.

Here’s one more photo of the build in process but with all the drawers open.  It’s a really nice design, I’m not sure what would go into those vertical slots though, maybe train track pieces?

Table build

Take a look at the full build process over on his blog, or the imgur album he made.

Aviation Desk

the desk

I have a thing for desks.  I built my own oversized one (now that I think of it, I don’t think I ever posted that DIY, I should get on that), and I’ve wanted to make another one  of a different theme for some time now.  Well, reddit user SirLanceOlong decided to make his own desk based on an airplane wing design.  The design is just about the only thing aviation about it though, there’s far too much heavy wood involved in it.  I’m sure the desk is sturdy enough to put a small car on top of, but it’s grossly over-engineered, just my type of design!

desktop frame

Here’s a closer up view of the table surface as he adds the sheet metal to the frame:

adding metal

desktop view

 

I think my favorite part however is the pin-up girl painted on the side.  That really makes this desk transcend from a regular over thought out airplane wing desk, to a truly dedicated work of Aviation art.

desk pinup girl

He has two large (100 photo) gallery over on imgur and a smaller 50 photo gallery of the more final product.  Feel free to look it over, including the first inspiration photo.  I got to say, he did a good job of coming close to the inspiration.