Sunday, September 30, 2012

Episode #333 is Now online

Another Week, and another episode of Beam Me Up.  This week is episode 333!  Plenty of stuff to get you thinking this week.

I open with Symphony of Science’s newest track.  A very well done track called “We Can Change the World – Our Biggest Challenge”  which deals with global warming.  

As a tie-in to this song I read editor Kallamis' rant on the lack of general understanding of even the most basic of scientific phenomena, in this case, the phases of the moon and the “new” moon in particular.  It would be funny, if it weren't so sad.

First break of the afternoon is a new episode of our telepathic detective of New Eden,  Jack Garrett in episode twelve “The Fearful Dead” by Jason Kahn.  Garrett's world continues to get more complicated and even stranger and dangerous often at the same time.  People are dying and something is feeding, but what....

And of course, what would a week be like without a visit to the Star Trek universe and two new questions this week.

Next from the folks over at the Earth Sky website report that scientists are rethinking the “goldilocks” zone where life might exist with liquid water. 

 Curiosity has uncovered evidence of liquid running water at some point in Martian history in the form of an ancient stream bed.  This is great news for the proponents of Mars being a wet world at some point in its' history.  

This week's review is a dvd of the move “Priest” which tries to be a lot of things to a lot of people.  Motorcycles, stream trains, steam punk, big guns, vampires and much more.   Is it as bad as it sounds? Well, catch my review...

For the final act of the afternoon.....part six of Ed McKeown's ever so excellent novelette “The Dive” This week, plans are formed and set into action to hopefully stop the invasion of the horrific beings from the underworld. 

That about winds it up!  I think you will agree that this week is an excellent episode. 

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Martian probe Curiosity continues to do amazing science with the discovery of evidence of a fast running stream.

Curiosity science co-investigator William Dietrich surmises that the stream was moving about 3 feet per second, with a depth somewhere between ankle and hip deep.

The stream bed is composed of conglomerate rocks, which are rocks made up of different sized gravel cemented together into a layer of material. This is the first time we're actually seeing water-transported gravel on Mars, stated Dietrich.

Many of the stones in the conglomerate are rounded. This indicates long-distance flows that continued or repeated over a long time, not just once or for a few years.

The gravels range in size from a grain of sand to a golf ball, with many rounded stones in the mix. It is this size and shape that they WERE moved and are to big to be moved by the wind.
The complete article can be read on NASA.GOV

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Symphony of Science - Our Biggest Challenge

Here is the newest out from Symphony of Science called "Our Biggest Challenge" Featuring Bill Nye and the great Isaac Asimov among others in an ode to climate change / global warming.

Here is what the YouTube video's description say:
  • Published on Sep 12, 2012 by melodysheep A musical investigation into the causes and effects of global climate change and our opportunities to use science to offset it. Featuring Bill Nye, David Attenborough, Richard Alley and Isaac Asimov. "Our Biggest Challenge" is the 16th episode of the Symphony of Science series by melodysheep. 

Here is the URL where you can get more of this auto-tune greatness: Visit for more science remixes!

Review: Priest

Priest Directed by Scott Stewart Starring Paul Bettany, Karl Urban, Lily Collins, Cam Gigandet, Maggie Q

 Mark comes through again with a movie that I never thought I would watch, matter of fact I don’t even remember this one. which is kind of a shame.

Priest is set in a future but I would guess a parallel universe. Their present would be sometime in our distant future. However they seemed to have fought a war with beings that they call vampires (but unlike any vampires in our universe) that regressed the world to something along the lines of our late 1800s but with a mixture of high tech but tech that has all but disintegrated.

The “church” is now the only protector against the outside world and their elite enforcers are a small group of warrior priests.

This world has no concept of human vampires no, their vampires are animals of the night that eat and drink human flesh and blood. They are supposed to be wiped out, but when one of the Priests discovers that this is not the case, he goes against the church to go out and fight them once again and the church sends out the rest of the priests to stop him.

The balance of the movie is the Priest finding the ultra baddy and that is a surprise and then there are invasions of hives, fights, trains...pretty formula stuff but it does work. Ultra-modern motorcycles and 18th century trains. Definitely an alternative reality or dimension.

Extra are not all that much to scream about. However there are some extended scenes, deleted scenes and some commentary. I can’t say the movie is a blockbuster but it’s not crap either. The world is well realized and they don’t seem to break all that many of the “law” they set up, so that makes the movie a 7.5 and extras are 8 for an overall of 15.5 for a 7.75 oh hell call it a 7.8 which is fair. Recommendation? If you haven’t anything else to watch, this will give you something to think about. Yeah, watch it...borrow it but I wouldn’t buy it, not even if I was into vampires.

Are Antiques Extint?

Here is a startling concept that I was exposed to while watching a video on hacker-space mods on typewriters.

 The initial fear was that the typewriter itself was on the verge of extinction.

Really when you think about it, that is a fair assessment of the plight of the typewriter. However a curious thing was said by one of the persons in the video. He said that there are no antiques anymore.

 What a curious statement! You look around and the world is full of them, that is until you realize where and from when they came from. Most of what we consider real antiques today are heirlooms that someone cherished and passed down. Most are from the 1800 and the early part of the last century.

Now I understand that to be a true antique one of the criteria is that the item should for the most part be old. That's fair. But as you get nearer and nearer to the 21st the antiques are less an heirloom and more manufactured, closer to collectible than true antiques.

Now as the 21st moves along valued items are the newest high tech gizmo and not something you would or is of value to pass on.

 The ipads, ultrabooks and smartphones that are coveted today will eventually age and fail to operate and ultimately become part of an ever increasing pile of techno-trash. It would seem that indeed the days of the heirloom - antique are at an end.

Here is the original video



    Yeah, you read the title correctly. The title is totally correct. It is some of the people now days that are totally incorrect. You aren't going to believe this stuff.  Remember when I complained on a rant about WTF is wrong with kids and people today. Well, here we go again.
    On the 12th of September, there was an article on  The title was this.
   “The moon performs vanishing act this week, how it happens.”
    Now I assumed immediately that this was some kind of once every 50,000 year thing that is a natural but very rare occurrence, even though I had never heard of it.  So I think awesome, I get to learn something new that we found out.
    It was about the new moon, and why it happens. Now this is something I knew long before I went to school even. Which lets forget that, and remember that this was taught in first freaking grade even.  Now apparently there have been a lot of questions by younger people that don’t know why it disappears. Apparently there have been a lot of videos posted online recently where people are wondering where the moon went. That is why the original article was written actually. 
    Are you freaking kidding me or what? How can they not know. How can anyone not know.  Even the pagans, and the sorcerers (who have no religion), and of which I am from actually, all knew that ages ago, the same as most everyone else on the planet did. I can’t even begin to imagine how ancient that little sliver of knowledge is. I tried to find out if there was a definite time when it was accepted so, but I gave up after searching the net for the last couple hours. I’m going to go with George Moon discovered it, but before he could return and tell everyone, he was eaten by a saber tooth.  
    How can they not know this. You can actually watch it happen over days. It is simple logic. What happens is that the moon sun and Earth change relative positions. So basically this works like this.  Sun, moon Earth = new moon. Sun earth moon = full moon. It gets a bit more complicated than this, but for basic forum explanation this works. It provides a simple and easy explanation as to how things work. I forget the exact measure of time, but all parts of the moon get approximately 14.5 days of sunshine, and 14.5 days of night. It all deals with the movement and path of light from the sun based on the alignment of the three. Wish we had 2 moons and really confuse everyone.
    Who is teaching these kids. What are the teachers doing, and not to come down on teachers at all, (especially with what they have to deal with today with these kids), where the bloody hell are the parents at. This is simple common knowledge that we All had before we even went to school back in the day. (I can’t believe I just used the term “back in the day,” AGAIN. I must be getting as old as the Medusa Cascade.)
    And for the teachers, I wanted to be one of you once, but saw what had to be dealt with on the kids level, and the political nonsense of a school, so I figured with my temperament, no, not a good idea. But thanks for being teachers.
     You know, between this, and the people we have in office that either ignore or despise science, it’s absolutely amazing that we ever got to space. I’m starting to think that it’ll be a fecking miracle if we make it the next 20 years, without laws against technology and science. Not only do people not understand the basic concepts of their world and her orbiting neighbor, they don’t seem to really want to know anything. And complain about those of us that embrace knowledge. I have gotten so tired of these people, but that’s another rant up and coming very soon.
    Anyway, apparently the population is slowly evolving backwards. You know, it’s statistically proven, and also the words of the old masters, that the more people you have, the more crazy people you will have as well. I think they missed something there. The more people you have, the more ignorant the majority seems to become as well. Yeah, I’m on a rant here again.
 Anyway, here is the link to the original article. Good article, I'm just so shocked, amazed, ashamed, confused, pick  one of those as to why I didn't run with this immediately.

   Need to get me about 879.8657 gallons of silver mercury, a whole bunch of super magnets (1080), electrical wiring and copper wiring, and see if the fracking thing I thought up one day works, and if it does, get the smeg off this planet. Anyone else want to come along. It’ll probably be a very short trip, but at least it will be interesting. While it lasts. And before you answer yes, remember that I am the man that flew an experimental ultra-light into a tree after it caught fire. 
  I just don't get how anyone could not know this. It's scary what people don't know now that they should know. It's the 21st smegging century, and people are acting like it is better to return to the 1500's. I'm going outside and scream now. Before I really go on  rant here. Probably have the non science people in the area thinking I've been possessed by the devil. Those that don't think that already that is. I wish I could just move into a research facility somewhere. Life would be simpler. Not so many idiots to deal with on a daily basis. Just physicists trying to strangle each other over theories. I can deal with that.

Would I wear a WHAT?!!!

Ok people, by now you have all seen these goofy ears that are the rage in Japan, I guess.  You can wiggle them and flop one just by thinking of it.

Well if you thought that was the end of ie, think again.   Here is a "concept" video for of all things a wagging tail!  This device somehow reads your "emotions" and wags accordingly.  I am serious!  Don't believe this p.o.c. (proof of concept) commercial:

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Romney Said WHAT?! WTF!

Ok, I for the most part don't get political here but come on!  This is the person who thinks and many agree that he is the answer to the problems facing the US.   I was reading an article where Romney's wife was on a flight that had to make an emergency landing due to electrical problems.  I can understand his concern, but his solution shows a frightening lack of even basic science.... Here is some excerpts from the Boing Boing article that can be read here:
  • “When you have a fire in an aircraft, there’s no place to go, exactly, there’s no — and you can’t find any oxygen from outside the aircraft to get in the aircraft, because the windows don’t open. I don’t know why they don’t do that. It’s a real problem. So it’s very dangerous.
HUH?!  This person could conceivably make policy in research and education?!  I know this note is likely to get some negative response, but come on!  Can you imagine?  Smoke in the cabin at 40k and opening the windows is viewed as a viable option?  To let in the oxygen you understand cause there isn't any in the plane.... makes you wonder why the engineers didn't think of this idea when they were building the planes....seems so obvious now!

Stanley Goes to Space

Here has got to be one of the cutest flights to the edge of space I have seen ever.  Here is the video text:
  • On Aug 24th 2012 we sent my son's favorite train "Stanley" to space in a weather balloon with a HD camera and an old cell phone for GPS. He was recovered 27 miles away in a corn field and we got some great footage of the trip. This video documents the journey from liftoff to landing.
  • PLEASE read below, it answers most questions I get emailed.
  • My 4 year old and Stanley are inseparable like Calvin and Hobbes. He's been attached to him since he was two, and they play, sleep and do everything together. I animated Stanley's face with After Effects and Photoshop to bring him to life how I imagine my son sees him. 

 Hummmm I wondered about that! lol Anyway, here is the video....

Saturday, September 22, 2012

BMU #332 Now On Line

For some reason, mainly not paying attention, the newest episode 332 was labeled 331 even though all the links went to 332 it could have led to some confusion so I have updated the file title.  Sorry for the confusion.

Here is episode 332 of Beam Me Up, for your enjoyment!

 yaaaeeeeee are we excited yet? Wow, tough crowd.... Well, anyway, I warm up with an oldie, Thomas Dolby's She blinded me with science.

Next is the first story of the afternoon, Mark Webb's The Gloriously Cunning plan which demonstrates that even the best laid plans can often be unraveled when one does not take in crucial facts.

Up next is Star Trek Trivia with two new trivia questions!

Ok, now on to the BMU blog!

Have you heard about planet Nibiru? If no, then listen to with Earth Sky article I found!

I rented both of the animated Ultimate Avengers animated straight to disk movies. The first movie in particular really followed the Marvel Avenger history line.

Check out my reviews of both movies on disk. And on the ISS, NASA, with shades of Apollo 13, two EVA astronauts assure the continuation of some of the critical systems with some unusual parts!

Is FTL possible? NASA steps back and rethinks it's position as some high level mathematics which, on paper, seem to show that it might just be possible with far lower energy requirements than was previously calculated!

And finally, part 5 of Edward McKeown's The Dive. Enjoy!

Friday, September 21, 2012


ok there BMU followers, here is a funny from Xnewsman that will make you think...

Think about it now......

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Warp Drive...Possible? More-so Than We Previously Thought!

Ian Steadman, writing for Wired UK, has penned an article that if not blowing my socks off, really set me up and take notice!

 Ian writes that NASA scientists think that the concept of FTL may just be available to future generations.

 Back in 1994, physicist Miguel Alcubierre demonstrated that warp speed was, on paper at least, theoretically possible. However, one of the major drawbacks was the assumption that Alcubierre's drive required the mass/energy conversion equivalent to that of a gas giant of roughly the size of Jupiter!

(Now this renders the drive impossible, but my thinking is that this is stunningly efficient. Now here is my reasoning, discounting warp for the moment, Light has been used as the universal speed limit. Though clearly not infinitely fast, it takes a prodigious amount of energy to reach C. Matter of fact, given any starting point speed and then factoring the energy it took to accelerate to that speed. Now doubling that speed does not take twice the energy but 4x, it soon becomes apparent that even an incremental increase would require more than all the energy available in the Universe. Anytime you could go faster than light on just the energy/mass of a planet like Jupiter is very efficient.)

Now Harold White, a scientist from NASA’s Johnson Space Center, has revealed at a Sept. 14 space symposium that his team has calculated that the amount of energy required to create an Alcubierre drive may be far smaller than first estimated.

Those of you that have been with the blog for some time remember that we have on occasion discussed various drives like an Alcubierre.

The main argument against ftl is that nothing can travel faster than C ( information may be the one exception....but lets stay within the realms of star ships and such) So the trick is, how do you keep a ship in normal space but move it around at super-luminal speeds. Alcubierre's drive "compresses" space ahead of the ship and expands it behind, with the net effect of a "trough" between the two wave fronts. Inside the normal space, the ship would travel in normal space/time, but the normal area between the two warped areas could be moved around at speeds far above C. (It starts to sound very much like the Enterprise's warp drive. Their "Warp Field" could very well have been this normal space maintained inside of of the warp "waves" fore and aft)

As the article points out, if you change the "shape" of the warp field, you greatly reduce the energy expenditures. Alcubierre's engine called for a globe and where White's team has differed is to use a "doughnut" shaped field in their equations.

Still, the energy requirements are phenomenal and far outstrip any form of energy or generation we have at our disposal, at present.

Plus there still is the nagging problem that José Natário published in 2002. According to the Wikipedia article:
  • it would be impossible for the ship to send signals to the front of the bubble, meaning that crew members could not control, steer or stop the ship.

Oh my.....

Wired Article

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Beam Me Up episode 331 is now online

Episode 331 of Beam Me Up, for all intents, put itself together this week. I was sure that there was not enough material to take us past 40 minutes. Ha! Well it manages to make it to the top of the hour no problem.

First off is a kickin piece of music, Science Fiction & Familen by Nephew, which sets the spirit of this week’s program, which never seems to slow back down.

Next is the first story offering of the afternoon. David Scholes sends in a story in his Multiverse / Asgard universe, called ODENFORCE which deals with a very special history class at the beginning or maybe the end of time.

Of Odin and Thor a search through the ages. Music from Kevin Macleod

I go next to Star Trek Trivia with the answers to last week’s trivia questions and two new questions for this week.

I tap Earth Sky once again for a couple of very interesting science. First, What exactly IS Earth glow and the second article, evidence of a star consuming its’ planets has been observed.

From the Sept.17th 2012 issue of NewsWeek I find an article that deals with a cell’s “junk” DNA which now has been proved to be far more inportant to how a cell runs than was ever suspected before which may lead to a whole new class of medical treatment!

A couple of close encounters with a pair of Earth crossing asteroids that had JUST been discovered.

finally from the blog, I just had enough time to mention my review of Marvel’s Ultimate Avengers one and two direct to DVD movies.

The final story of the afternoon is part four of Edward McKeown’s “the Dive”. We now have an idea of what is coming as the enemy is met deep in the tunnel network, and what is coming is possibly the end of humanity itself.

Monday, September 17, 2012

ISS Saved By Toothbrush?

On a recent EVA to replace an electrical switching unit, Astronauts Sunita Williams and Akihido Hoshide, during a marathon eight hour mission, were having difficulty getting a bolt to tighten. It became apparent that debris was clogging the bolt's receptacle enough that the bolt simply would not engage and tighten.

The initial reaction is to simply clean the bolt hole, but what makes this situation troublesome is that the astronauts did not have any tools capable of doing the job included in their kits.

Consulting with engineers on the ground, Williams and Hoshide fashioned a cleaning tool out of a toothbrush, a metal rod and tape. (the picture at the top of this article shows the tool)

There is more info on NASA and Wired - click the article for the Wired

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Review: Ultimate Avengers Vol. 1 & 2

Directed by Curt Geda
Voice cast
Justin Gross      as Captain America / Steve Rogers
Olivia d'Abo      as Black Widow / Natasha Romanov
Marc Worden    as Iron Man / Tony Stark
Andre Ware       as General Nick Fury
Grey DeLisle    as Wasp / Janet Van Dyne-Pym
Nolan North      as Ant-Man / Hank Pym
David Boat         as Thor
Fred Tatasciore  as The Hulk
Michael Massee as Dr. Bruce Banner
Nan McNamara  as Dr. Betty Ross
Jim Ward            as Herr Kleiser

This disk is the first of two and pretty much pulls a pretty conservative line for a plot. I haven’t seen the live action Avengers yet, but what I can see, seems to follow a very similar timeline. Plus if you catch the Avengers on Sunday mornings you will recognize the alien Chitauri. These alien beings are in fact backing the Nazi regime with the subjugation of the human race that they plan to accomplish by destruction of SHIELD satellite. Since SHIELD is all but hamstrung, Fury has the distasteful duty of trying to recruit superhumans that are at best difficult to deal with.

Fury has already recovered Captain America / Steve Rogers, but Bruce Banner / Hulk , Black Widow, Iron Man, Ant Man, Wasp and a person very likely unstable and who believes he is Thor.

Together they somehow have to work together and in the meantime defeat the Chitauri.

Being straight to disk, I mainly wanted to get an idea of what to maybe expect from the live action. Plus there was some curiosity as to how the DVD might compare to the weekly offerings. I have to say I was mildly surprised. The animation is not bad, seems to have something of an anime influence, the plot actually took chances with the characters that I never thought would take place. The extras are interesting and if not enough to make some happy, more than adequate.

I would give this first offering a grudging recommendation. Lets see how the second holds up.

Ultimate Avengers 2

Voice Cast
Justin Gross Steve Rogers / Captain America
Marc Worden Tony Stark / Iron Man
Andre Ware General Nick Fury
Grey DeLisle Janet Van Dyne-Pym / Wasp
Nolan North Hank Pym / Giant Man
Dave Boat Thor
Olivia d'Abo Natalia Romanov / Black Widow
Fred Tatasciore The Hulk
Michael Massee Dr. Bruce Banner
Nan McNamara Dr. Betty Ross
James K. Ward Herr Kleiser
Jeffrey D. Sams T' Challa / Black Panther
Mark Hamill Dr. Oiler
Dave Fennoy T'Chaka / Black Panther

As you can see, no big surprises in the voices and no big ones for the characters. I did notice some origin differences, but realistically there are characters here that were relevant 40 or 50 years ago and were at risk of being dropped. Hell I thought Thor was dated even in the 60s! Plus
a lot of them had not aged well through the 60s, 70s and so forth. So with this series and especially 2 you see some pretty major changes and even a character death!

In UA #2 we take a slightly different track to once again be introduced to T' Challa / Black Panther that really diverges from the Black Panther DVDs that I reviewed a month or longer. Here we have T' Challa becoming the Black Panther after Kleiser kills his father. Not so different, but Kleiser is not as he appears plus the Chitauri were not wiped out and they now have their sights set one Wakanda and if you follow the Black Panther and Avengers you know why, but I will pass on being a spoiler.

As usual no one gets along, everyone has their own agenda and even the couples aren’t happy, until they all MUST get the job done.

If you like the Ultimates comix they you’re going to love this. Pretty much all hand drawn and very well done. Almost NO CGI and then only when it works better and thank goodness for that!

The extras are excellent well worth a 9 and that is because I still would like to hear a commentary voice tract, The movie is a solid 8 for entertainment and animation, if that is your thing, you will enjoy it! And that gives the overall score to 1 and 2 to an 8 and from me I would say give it a go if you like comic and animation you will enjoy this. It is mainly for early teens, but I know the older fans are out there, cause I talk to em! So they would enjoy them as well.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

DNA's Biggest Asset? Middle Manament

It would appear that"junk DNA's" days are all but numbered.

Scientist have been puzzled for years by long strands of DNA that seem to have no purpose, doing noting at all. The standing opinion was that it was material from the early days of our evolution and has been "turned off".

Now after ten years of research, over 400 scientists in 32 laboratories from around the globe working on a project called Encode have announced that they have found what the "silent" DNA strands do. It seems the here to fore called "junk" DNA strands are the cell's "decision makers". These strands decide which genes are to be activated for protein production and which get turned off.

What is even more astounding is the amount of these decision maker DNA strands to specific genes! There are an average of a million for ever 23,000 genes or a ratio of apx. 50 - 1!

And even more astounding is treatments which traditionally have targeted genes. Now treatments that influence the decision makers to do the work for us.

For more, read Kent Sepkowts's article in the September 17th 2012 issue of Newsweek.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Asteroid to miss Earth, Jupiter Scar, see it live.

  Here is a site that is really cool, and they also show stuff live as well. 
  You can see a live video in 21 hours of asteroid QG42, which was only discovered on August 26th, and is listed as potentially hazardous. It's only 375 meters wide however, so no doomsday scenario yet. Sorry folks.
  They are also showing Jupiter where everyone will be looking for the scar from the latest impact on September 10th.
    This will be showing tonight, 9/12/2012, starting at 10pm EDT. 
   Just found this place myself while news reading, so I don't know a thing about it personally, but it looks cool. Not sure if you have to sign up there yet or not, but wanted to get this out here quick for anyone interested in checking it out tonight.

Monday, September 10, 2012

NASA's Flickr sample

NASA has quite literally put a huge amount of photos on their flickr

account. Here is one of the very fine examples!
As an example, here are one of several taken Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Aki Hoshide on Expedition 32.

Hoshide was a flight engineer who participated in the mission’s third session of extravehicular activity. During the six-hour, 28-minute spacewalk, Hoshide and NASA astronaut Sunita Williams, flight engineer, completed the installation of a Main Bus Switching Unit that was hampered by a possible misalignment and damaged threads where a bolt must be placed. They also installed a camera on the International Space Station’s robotic arm, Canadarm2. The bright sun is visible at left.

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Beam Me Up episode 330 is now online

This week on Episode 330 of Beam Me Up I start by wondering if 3d printing may be a bit of blue sky reasoning. Being able to custom make parts has the potential to be quite liberrating but if we look back to a story I read in '07 from Cory Doctorow that was a chilling look into the future of 3d printers.

Next we return to New Eden for the first story of the afternoon, episode 12 of Jason Kahn's In Plain Sight. Telepathic cop Jack Garrett continues to discover very bizzare details of a micabre murder.

Hey I start a new section in Star Trek trivia, no more numbers...lots more fun!

Next from the Beam Me Up blog:

How about a review?! Yeah? Predators? Oh come on!!! Look it really wasn't all that bad! Check out my review! Xnewsman sends in a funny video copilation of Spock saying his favorite word! Why isn't this just as iconic as Bones'  I'm a Doctor, Not a ....dammit!   Prepare yourself for one of the most bizzare Terry Crews' video to date. You simply HAVE to check this interactive video out! And after that breakdown, I play a couple of excellent articles from Earth Sky. The short film Reboot by Andrew McMurry made for Little Rock 2012 48-Hour Film Project. It is a fine made little short that really should be seen to apriciate.
Finally the show this week closes with part 3 of Ed McKeown's The dive.

(I just realized that the radio version of The Dive by Ed Mckeown. This had a couple of words that needed to be censored for the radio. I totally spaced replacing the piece with the unedited one. If it really bugs you let me know and I will redo the podcast. editor)

Friday, September 07, 2012

NASA's Newest Testbed Lander Flys Flawlessly.

NASA's "Mighty Eagle". Was very successful in its latest mission in which it completed a short flight of 40 or so feet in the air, with a small translation after which it identified a target on the surface and landed, according to NASA / Goddard:

 up to 100 feet, (identify) an on-the-ground target with its onboard cameras, and then autonomously landed itself at the chosen spot.

NASA describes this sort flight as a was to slowly mature a new system of small landers..

Why a new lander you ask?  Well unlike the system we saw on Curiosity, this robotic lander?:

Go here for the short demo vedio of this lander's latest success.

Terry Crews Takes the Ole Spice Weirdness one Step Around the Bend!

ok, not Science fiction or even science, but those of you that have followed me here and on the program know that at time I just get.....well I am not even sure of the definition, but suffice it to say, when it happens, the weirder the better.

Now if you have seen the Ole Spice deodorant commercials featuring Terry Crews you have experienced a special kind of weird hilarity. Crews has played everything from a muscle bound foot ball lineman, a psychotic killer to a frazzled family man. One of Crews' "talents" is almost superhuman control of single muscle groups, being able to isolate and flex with total concentration.

Well it was bound to happen and rejoice in the madness for Crews has devised a one man band for remix. Transdermal patches pick up the muscle activity and translate it to mechanical energy, which is used to play musical instruments. Between Crews demeanor and the macabre interconnection and Crews remix rap, the end effect is disturbing and funny at the same time.

And to think that it continues after the film to a fully inter-active remix only leads to the total weirdness. Check it out and be prepared to be affected for some time to come.

Old Spice Muscle Music from Terry Crews on Vimeo.

Solar Obseratories Witness and Record a Brilliant Eruption on the Sun

The Coronal Mass Ejection that took place was, if nothing else, exciting and majestic. Here is how NASA says:

  • On August 31, 2012 a long filament of solar material that had been hovering in the sun's atmosphere, erupted into space. The ejected mass traveled away from the sun at over 900 miles per second.
  • This movie shows the ejection from a variety of viewpoints as captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), NASA's Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO), and the joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO).

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Spock Fascinating

A fascinating compilation of Spock's favorite word. Excellent face book discovery by our favorite researcher Xnewsman! Check this video out. It should be every bit a star trek meme as McCoy's I'm a doctor dammit. Check it out!

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Review: Predators


Adrien Brody, Topher Grace, Alice Braga, Walton Goggins
Laurence Fishburne, Danny Trejo

Another dvd from my friend Mark. Here we have a film in the Predator franchise. I would not call it a reboot, but Predators calls more to the first movie than any other. As in the first Predator movie, the setting is a sub tropical jungle, the first twist though is none know of each other. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, I am not going to spoil the very inventive opening sequence. I will say that nothing is quite what it seems.

Laurence Fishburne is a survivor who is clearly around the bend, unfortunately his time on screen is very short, which is really a shame.

Not being a fan of earlier movies, I can say for sure if some of the reveals are already accepted, but for me, I had an Oh that’s cool, - moment.

Predators for the most part follows the first movie, just more aliens and perhaps more humans.

So, what can you expect? Well the movie is a straight ahead action movie. Plenty of blood and gore, big and even bigger guns, predictable plot, but the ending sets up a Predators 2 (oh I know) I will say the ending is not a gimme, otherwise it rote by the numbers. Forget about extras. Brainless entertainment, good photography, well framed action sequences, but the end result is MEH

If you’re entertained by this type of move, the action and the “surprise!” moments will do it for ya, but for me overall it is a 5. If you’re a fan, go ahead, if you have never seen a predator movie, go ahead...otherwise, don’t waste your money.

Doctorow's "Print Crime" & 3D printing. Could it Happen?

Back in 07 I asked Cory Doctorow if I could read his warning tale called "Print Crime". The gist of the story was that 3d printers had proliferated to the point that everyone had one or had printed up parts to have one. Owning a 3d was not a crime, however the insidious part of the story was that with copyrights and various other controls on digital output, it had become a serious crime to print most items. Certainly a chilling warning.

Now of course you see all forms of printing project available for these devices. Plus the fact that the technology is being accepted whole hog. Except for an article I just read an article that I first saw on Kim Kommando's site and followed the link. Here we have a company that wants to reinvigorate the nation's manufacturing by bringing designs back to the US and printing them instead of tooling up and making these products in a factory.

The military and the Obama administration have championed this initiative and even asked congress for funds to help put a framework together that would promote battlefield replacement parts, parts no longer available and to "boost competitiveness throughout America". But will it? If the present shows us anything is that once a product is found viable, every action to protect a monopoly is brought to the front. Granted the green and the do it yourself ideology is gaining ground but I am willing to speculate that they will be no more than a footnote. Which is really to bad, when you have products that don't warrant large outlays and fit best into small manufacturing frameworks, but are not utilized because of whatever patent or what have you is rigorously enforced.

Doctorow's tale took this idea and extrapolated it to the extreme where certain jail time and possibly worse was in store for those that would foolishly print parts as though it were their only way to keep some of the tech running or what have you.

Anyway, it is worth consideration.
Read the article by clicking the title then formulating a reply here if interested. Am I wrong to think Doctorow may have hit the nail on the head and not everything is coming up roses for those that are firmly behind the 3d printing tech?

Sunday, September 02, 2012

REBOOT directed by Andrew McMurry

I found this really top shelf short film in my YouTube subscriptions. It is called "Reboot" posted by Backyardpictures2. He writes:

  • This is a short film I helped make for the Little Rock 2012 48-Hour Film Project.
  • Two guys discover an oddity in the world that is related to technology (and its creators).
  • Directed by Andrew "AndrewMfilms" McMurry, who received the award for Best Directing for this film at the "Best Of 48-Hr" screening.

If you didn't know it was a fast made film, well hell even now that you do, you will have to admit that this is pretty damn entertaining. A bit derivative perhaps, but I have seen high budget films that were vastly more derivative than this, so this is a thumbs up. Enjoy!

Saturday, September 01, 2012

Beam Me Up episode 329 is now online

Episode 329 of Beam Me Up is chocker block full this week!

First off is an interesting song I found while looking for background music. From Fit and the Coniptions is Sweet Sister Starlight. Not really science fiction themed, but strand and undearving. And can we go a week without any star trek trivia! I end the star date questions with the final two this week. On to other Star Trek questions next week!

The first story this week is a piece of flash from Antipodean called Addiction from Natalie Potts. Demonstrating that addiction can take many many forms. Next from the Beam Me Up blog I review the anime series Sounds of the Sky. A short 12 part series that has the potential to grab you and hang on. Next up is three articles from earth / sky that run the gaumet of interesting features. For some interesting Curiosity news, a youTube enthuiast took the 4fps landing film and converted it to an astounding 25fps and the effect is amazing! Next it's news concerning Juno and Dawn spacecraftwho have made different burns to help them complete their missions. There are several other less than Earth shattering but fun stuff worth checking out.

Finally I play part two this week of Ed McKeown's The Dive and things are getting weirder!

That's it in this week's episode. Check it out, I would hazzard a guess that you find it entertaining!

Dawn Leaves Vesta to Rendevous With Ceres

Hubble photo of Ceres
NASA's Dawn spacecraft has completed its' mission at the asteroid Vesta and is now heading to dwarf planet Ceres.

NASA reported a successful start of Dawn's ion thruster engines and the craft began moving away from Vesta at a steadily increasing rate. Due to the efficiency of Dawn's engines, it will only use 250 pounds of fuel. The ion engines produce very little thrust but they can be run for extended periods which will allow Dawn to reach Ceres in just two and a half years which would be impossible with standard chemical rocket engines.

Below is a high-res farewell tour of Vesta made up of images from Dawn