LEGO Engineering + Science

It’s always fun watching people push LEGO to the limits.  Here you can get a crash course in gear reduction and how to generate torque.  It’s interesting to see the differences in weights that can be lifted.  And it soon becomes apparent that the limitations aren’t in the gearing, or the motor, it’s the other materials which are failing.

Martians

You can watch this 1 hour video on the research that proposes there are/were living things in ancient Martian lakes.  I watched/listened to some of it.  It’s interesting, but I don’t have the time to dedicate to it’s entirety.  Unlike some of the scientific videos, this one is interesting, and the presenters know how to put emotion into the talk.

The end of an Era

Earlier this month something unbelievable happened, StumbleUpon closed down.  I didn’t know it was founded in 2002.  I started using it in 2005, or 2006 I think.  I can’t remember exactly, I’m pretty sure that I started using the site well before that blog post, but who knows.

Endless hours, nay, days were spent stumbling across the internet.  I found many a strange photo, or comic, or video.  Some interesting natural? formations.  The whole basis of the Going Green series of posts started from some stumbles.  I had interesting conversations with people, sadly I can’t remember any of their names.

It all started with that browser add-on.  You know, back in the hay-day of browser add-ons.  You couldn’t open someone’s browser without 36 different things opening up, stealing all your cookies, and making life really weird.  Yet back then, no one cared.  I gladly stumbled all over the internet, well into the morning hours.  Things slowed down when I switched to the Chrome browser.  And things practically disappeared when the browser add-on turned more into an iframe.  I guess SU wanted even more of our dataz.  It might have been around this time that they changed their logo from the cool green SU to the strange ugly orange.  I see that as the death of them.

I honestly not have known that they were shutting down had it not been for this Reddit Post.

Regardless, me and my 42k likes will live on forever.  They might not be relevant, they might not even exist anymore, but good golly, they were some great times wasted away on the immature internetz.

Sea Level

These short YouTube videos make it very easy to learn things.  You might not get a quality education.  And you might get more of a cliff’s notes version, but you learn things.  And if it’s interesting for you, you can use it to learn more about things in general.

Such is the case surrounding trying to figure out what “sea level” is.

Or you can also watch this video that explains why rivers have bends:

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The Aztec’s Were Crazy

Once you can get past the terrible narration, you can appreciate the absolutely terrifying nature of this whistle.  It’s theorized that these whistles were used to strike fear in the enemies.  Or to send send the human brain into the next state of being.

I guess when you don’t have metallurgy, or guns, or those fun things, you have to make your own strange things to pass the time.

This video is somewhat easier to watch because the woman can carry a conversation better:

She also has a collection of whistles to blow though and terrify you with.

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Blue Marble Machine

That was pretty neat.  Apparently, it took him 3 months to make that.  I can see why.  All the resetting, and rejiggering and accidentally bumping things.  It’s madness, but also pretty ace.

Train vs. Tornado (Tornado wins)

The captions on this video explain everything, but because I want to fill up space and not seem like I’m wasting time, here’s the meat.  A Freight train traveling through the state of Illinois “accidentally” crossed paths with a F2 tornado.  I get that trains, especially freight trains, are very difficult to stop.  Though the weather is pretty easy to predict, at least a few miles out like this tornado was.  Surely the central command new something about possible weather issues ahead.  Though, then again, Tornadoes are spontaneous.  Perhaps it did just materialize out of nowhere and toss those train cars around like a toys.

Lesson to be learned here – nature is scary, don’t mess with it.

{reddit}

Judgement Day

We can thank our friend The Cyberdyne system T-800 Model 101 Terminator for helping us avert destruction.  At least for a little while that is, because Judgement Day can never be averted, only postponed.

Much as been said about the war between the machines and the humans.  There have been many documentaries, each of them telling a different version of the same events.  One of the commonalities they all share however is the persistence of man.  For when he is backed into a corner and all bets are off, he will do anything to prevent his own destruction.  That’s something that even a Machine was able to learn.  This leads us to hope that there will be a future where Judgement Day can be perpetually averted.