Monday, December 29, 2014

NASA OKs SpaceX's Latest Milestone for ISS Crew Transfers


NASA has approved SpaceX's first push towards launching crews to the International Space Station.  This under the auspices of NASA's  Commercial Crew Transportation Capability  contract.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

It May Be Possible That Certain SAPs May Be FTL!


Phys.org reports that in a new paper  accepted  by the journal Astroparticle Physics, written by Robert Ehrlich, a recently retired physicist from George Mason University, claims that the neutrino is very likely a tachyon or faster-than-light particle.

Monday, December 22, 2014

BMU 434 Now On-line



Hey Hey!  Episode 434 of Beam Me Up is on the way....corny I know but it IS the season.....

So to keep is short and sweet:

I play a track from Season Geekings called Winter's Day by John Anealio

Stories this week are -

The Little Helper by Kat Otis is the first for the afternoon
I close with episode 31 of  the Dark Inspectre series.

Talking points:

Review of the live action movie Kite -
The Curiosity rover finds unexpected Methane spikes
I read a listener supplied review of “Future Diary”

Click HERE for newest episode

Saturday, December 20, 2014

review: kite (live action)



Kite  Based on Kite by Yasuomi Umetsu
Staring

India Eisley           as Sawa
Callan McAuliffe  as Oburi
Samuel L. Jackson as Karl Aker


Kite takes place in a post-financial collapse corrupt society, follows Sawa who tries to track down her parents killer with help from his ex  police partner. 

Those in the know recognize the main theme as the Kite of anime series and the anime movie.  (though the anime movie Liberator is probably the least "kite like" than any of the others)

As a general reference all three versions share talking points, but it is the live action that diverges the most.  Yes we have a female protagonist that has a sketchy memory at best.  She is a contract killer seemingly under control of a father figure, benevolent or not. The earrings are the reinforcement item and so on.  

What it comes down to is a comparison between the anime series and live action movie.   Having seen the series first I am inclined to consider it to be the benchmark.  Others may consider the movie so.  The truth is though that most found the movie to be very confusing.  Fast paced yes but many found it difficult to follow.  

Having watched the series first, I was able to follow the film for the most part.  That however did not make it a better film.  

The film IS confusing and IS difficult to follow under the best of conditions.

Editing left what I would consider important plot lines on the floor. 

So it is very very difficult to score this outing in the "Kite" series any higher than a 7.  Lots of action, which means lots of killing.......But continuity has be thrown out the window.

 

 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Don't Dismiss Life on Mars Just Yet.

 
NASA's rover Curiosity was sent to Mars to explore Gale's crater, looking for the most part for the chemical markers that could indicate that in Mars' distant past, the Martian environment could have supported life.

Change your DNA With Only Your Thoughts!


CrystalWizard sent is this very interesting piece.

researchers at ETH Zurich have an ongoing research project to construct a gene network that can be controlled by thoughts.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Death Rays Are Here To Stay......



Much as we would like that title to be some sort of weird musical, it isn't.

The Chinese military has a device called the Poly WB-1. It has the ability to concentrate  microwave beams.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Review: Future Diary Anime Series

 Review by Ninthgate_Show

So you're an antisocial, nonathletic, Japanese wallflower with really no ambition besides writing inconsequential sightings in your cell phone diary. No? Well, if you were, you would likely be Yukiteru Amano, the main protagonist in the anime Future Diary/ Mirai Nikki, one of most intense and disturbing sci-fi series in the last couple years.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Comets Not the Source of Earth's Water!

Comets did not bring water to Earth.  This startling piece of news comes from scientists studying data coming back from the ESU's Rosetta.  The data, they feel, points towards asteroids as the watery culprits.  Still, other scientists want more data before ruling out comets completely.

Though the lander Philae's batteries have long since been depleted after it landed on comet  67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, November 12 2014, the "mother ship" Rosetta has continued to study the comet up close.


This historically close look at a comet may well answer the questions of whether it was possible that these primitive bodies brought water to Earth billions of years ago. Data  gathered by Rosetta's two mass spectrometers suggests this may not be the case.

The authors conclude it is more likely that the water came from asteroids, but other scientists say more data is needed before comets can be ruled out.

Since August, the Rosetta probe has been orbiting Comet 67P and on  November 12 Philae, touched down on the comet's surface.

This historically close look at a comet may well answer the questions of whether it was possible that these primitive bodies brought water to Earth billions of years ago.  Data gathered by Rosetta's two mass spectrometers suggests this may not be the case.







Earth's water is very distinctive. The majority on Earth is made up of two hydrogen and one oxygen atoms.  Infrequently one of the hydrogen atoms will be replaced with a deuterium atom - better known as "heavy water". Deutertium however is exceedingly rare.  For every 10,000 water molecules, three deuterium atoms can be found, a very distinctive ratio of light to heavy water, not easily changed and persists for a very long time.

When the team compared the water on Earth to that of Comet 67p, it was discovered that there was far more heavy water on Comet 67P than on Earth, more than three time that found on Earth.

 Complete BBC News online article HERE

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

BMU ep433 now online


After my opening comments this week (ep:433) I play the closing theme for the anime series "is this a zombie?" FYI this series is a keeper.  Even though it is a fan service/harem series, it will run you through the gamete of emotions which is no mean feat.

Next is part 1 of Sound Effect by Margret Karmazin

From the blog:  I speak about a strange short film called Time Trap, start to finish, you are never sure exactly what is going on.

The anime short HAL is as different from Time Trap as you can get!  A truly poignant slice of life that will flip you on your head.

Kallimus once again joins the fray this week planting his feet firmly on the neck of Adult swim!

Next with tongue firmly planted in cheek, proof that the Earth is flat!

How about the world's largest largest solar power generation facility?

Could new research prove Neanderthals were a distinct species?!

And finally Venus or bust part one

Podcast address     beammeuppodcast.com   

Or Download podcast directly here

Saturday, December 06, 2014

Short Film: Time Trap

Now here is a short science fiction film written and directed by Michael Shanks.  For a short piece, it shows an amazing amount of comedy and pathos - both from the 'main character' and the scenes 'he' shows us.


 My ambivalence towards the main character is quite literally not knowing quite who or what it really is.   As you can see from the opening graphics, is that it is humanoid, a robot - maybe, an android - very likely.  In any event, wonderfully broad spectrum and a wildly funny ending.

The film can be found here on YouTube

Friday, December 05, 2014

Vsauce Asks, Is Earth Actually Flat?

I subscribe to Vsauce on Youtube because their science is always provocative and fun.

Here is one that recently was entered asking what seems to be a fairly straightforward question but from there, things get decidedly weird......Is the Earth flat?


Thursday, December 04, 2014

Review: HAL

Hal



Here is this initial setup for the movie:
  • Kurumi struggles with the loss of her boyfriend, Hal, and shuts herself off from the world. She remains a recluse until an android is made to look like Hal and sent to help her cope.
From this point the audience is treated to an even paced "slice of life" which slowly pulls you in to where you buy into the plot devices completely.  

Hal maintains the premise through most of the movie.  There are the odd moments however when Hal is it would appear, reintroduced to childhood friends who are completely nonpluses when Hal doesn't recall them at all.  Now this would at first blush be expected, however it is the friends reaction that begins to be telling.  Not all is as it seems.  That mixed with an ofttimes melancholy and often tearful happiness.  

The ending moments are hardly a given.  I was privy to the concluding moments and still found myself asking why such and such a development happened.  

The film at times is cute, other times heart breathtakingly sad and through it all is woven a thread of mystery.  

I would give the movie a solid 8, I would take off some for what appears to be deliberate confusion

Monday, December 01, 2014

Adult Sickness returns now

The Heartshe’s Return
            Yeah, the Heart She Holler soap opera is back, and the third season premieres tomorrow Dec. 2nd on adult swim at 12:30am.
            Look folks, if you know this show, you know what it is. If not, even I am not going to try and explain this sickness. (And yeah, I’ll be right there for it to return too.) I can’t explain it. It’s basically some kind of tucked away valley of southern gothic lunacy.
            Here’s my best explanation. Combine extreme gothic lunacy, crossed with duck kingdom and honey smeg for brains, and have it all done by Ed Woods (Plan nine from Outer Space, amongst other horrors guy) while he was put on a hallucinogenic trip into lah lah land.
            So yeah, it’s a twisted, deviant, perverted disgusting concept of a show, and I love it. There is something wrong with me, seriously. This; Super Jail, and my next review here. No doubt I need committed.

Buy Lots Of Pickles
            Or pay the price for your insolence, I don’t care. But if this dog ever comes around, I’m safe. For those that haven’t gotten this yet, it’s the latest sickness from Adult Swim. The show is titled Mr. Pickles, and is about a cute and loving, if just slightly deviant Border Collie. I watched the entire first season before really saying anything. It’s a cool show, if they’d just stop picking on that poor little puppy. Every week he has to defend himself from horrible people that live in that area. Close to Heartshe Holler I’m guessing. But that is what makes the show good. Watching Mr. Pickles defeat the enemy every week.

Rebels
            Star Wars Rebels, the newest anime in that fiasco of a franchise is pretty easy for me to review. Painful as it is, I will review it. Very short review, as that is all it takes.
            Watch it. That’s it. Just watch it. This from my mouth, about Star Wars Rebels. It caught the magic, and the fun, of the original, and it has some really cool characters in it, which of course is what got me I guess. What can I really say here folks. I was waiting to jump all over that too. I can’t. I actually like it. Check it out folks, it’s worth a half hour a week easily. Still can’t believe I’m saying that. I’ll say this though. They should have went with this kid, and just forgot about that dippy Luke all together. Even at the end, compared to this kid, Luke sucks.

OTHER STUFF
            Librarians is premiering this Sunday, the 7th on TNT at 8:00pm. This of course is from the movie series of the same name. Looks good to me, we’ll see.

            And now a few questions for all you little geniuses out here.
            First, why does my laptop shut off at random on it’s own after it is closed sometimes, and when it does, it screams at me the first 2 or 3 times I try to restart it. I’m guessing it’s about to die?
            And number 2, which also explains where I have been these past weeks. I need to know if anyone out here has done any work with Aquaponics. What I am wondering is what your best experience was with which type of flow system on it.
            Yeah Paul, got lucky, got materials, and bedroom is finished 7’ up, and the kitchen is joining it now, 7’ overhead. Underneath this is where my aquaponics is going to go, so I figured I’d see if anyone out here has experience over time before I decide on my final flow system. Still here Paul; just busy building and sealing and preparing for the next step. And aquaponics is a science we should all be experimenting with. Once it’s done, months from now I am sure, I’ll film it all and get it up here Paul. The entire system after it is up and running. Maybe by March I’ll have my time again. House husbands should not be this fecking busy.

Friday, November 28, 2014

People Believe That This is Evidence of What?!!!!

Or  space theories you won't believe other people believe!

Oh yes.  Like Bone On Mars!




The above photo, taken by the Martian rover Curiosity, appears to contain a thigh bone.


An interview with a man claiming to be a former Lockheed Martin scientist surfaced after the man's death. In it are details about  Area 51 and interactions with aliens, including photos like the one above. The interview,incredibly, claims that  aliens currently work for the US government.

Snopes.com has declared the video a hoax, pointing out that the alien figure shown looks an awful lot like a toy on sale at Walmart.


A UFO blog picked out what looks a little bit like a sideways sideways art on a rock from a photo captured by the Curiosity rover. The blog suggested that it looks an awful lot like some inscriptions on columns from ancient Egypt.


Want to send conspiracy theorists into orbit? Send an unmanned space plane into orbit for two years and keep its mission classified. Theories about what the X-37B did  was looking for aliens, commandeering abandoned alien bases on other planets or flying around communicating with extraterrestrials.


Malaysia Airlines conspiracy theorists claimed that radar readings showed a UFO interfered with the missing airliner flight, while others suggested it might have been swallowed by a black hole


When Philae "landed" on a comet, an anonymous "ESA whistle-blower" sent around an email claiming the comet was actually anything but and that the Rosetta mission was all about making contact with extraterrestrials, perhaps by a rendezvous at this secret spacecraft/base posing as a big rock

The World's Largest Solar Power Plant Now Online


Hi-Tech construction firm - First Solar -  recently finished building a 550-megawatt plant that is the largest active solar farm on the planet, capable of  powering 160,000 homes. 

Even with nine million solar panels that cover 9.5 square miles, it won't be king of the hill for long however.  

From the Endgadget article:
  •  First Solar's Desert Sunlight farm will match that capacity once its last solar cells go online, and SunPower's 579MW Solar Star is due to go live in 2015.
For more, read the Endgadget article HERE

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Research Show That Neanderthals Were NOT a Sub-Species of Modern humans


Researchers have identified new evidence supporting the growing belief that Neanderthals were a distinct species separate from modern humans (Homo sapiens), and not a subspecies of modern humans.  Neanderthals' extinction was likely due to competition from modern humans.  

Go Here   to read the absolutely fascinating article from the Ancient Origins online magazine.

Rosetta covers a Beatle's tune


Rosetta covers a Beatle's tune. Well almost. Andrew Huang took fragments of the audio from the Rosetta mission. His goal was to have the sounds from Rosetta back him up as he sings The Beatles' 'Across the Universe'. Apart from his singing, no other sounds were used in the song.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

NASA Opens Registration for 2015 Exploration Rover Challenge



From the NASA web page:NASA has opened team registration for the 2015 NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge.  The event will be held April 16-18, 2015, at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, in Huntsville Al.

The challenge is open to high school, college and university students in hands-on, experiential learning activities, while also testing potential technologies needed for future deep space exploration.

Student teams participating in the Rover Challenge must design, engineer and test a human-powered rover on a mock course designed to simulate the harsh and demanding terrains future NASA explorers may find on distant planets, moons and asteroids.

For complete article, go HERE for more



Beam Me Up #432 is online

My opening comments to Beam Me Up episode 432 drift off into a review of The Xmen Days of Future Past The first story for the afternoon is a short strange tale by Deborah Walker called Sibyl.  A deceptivly different "time travel" tale.

From the blog:  Meebles sends in an article about a "working" hoverboard.  ESA's spacecraft comet landing of Rosetta's landing craft.

Next, could AIs becoming a problem for humanity.

Jupiter's great red spot is something much more complicated than once figured.

Our final tale is Kurt Vonnegut Jr's 2br02b  a story about a perfect world that harbors one uncomfortable fact.

That's it...Enjoy

Saturday, November 15, 2014

The Great Red Sunburn


Jupiter has one of the largest planetary atmospheres in the solar system, with three atmosphere layers made up of ammonia, ammonium hydrosulfide and water clouds at different altitudes.   As chaotic and beautiful Jupiter's atmosphere is, the great red spot out-shines them all.

The Great Red Spot is a vortex the size of three Earths.  Researchers have been theorising for hundreds of years as to the cause of the Great Red Spot's color. Up until recently it was thought that the color was some kind of red phosphorus or sulfur compound rising from beneath Jupiter's clouds.

Scientists at Nasa's JPL have been studying data gained from Nasa's Cassini spacecraft, which flew by Jupiter in December 2000 on its way to Saturn and its moons.  They also conducted laboratory experiments  by blasting ammonia and acetylene gases (chemicals known to exist in Jupiter's atmosphere) with ultraviolet light, in order to simulate how the sun affects these chemicals.  The experiment produced a reddish material that matched a model of the Great Red Spot where the red-colored material had been confined to the uppermost reaches of the vortex.

"Our models suggest most of the Great Red Spot is actually pretty bland in color, beneath the upper cloud layer of reddish material," said Kevin Baines, a Cassini team scientist from JPL. "Under the reddish 'sunburn' the clouds are probably whitish or greyish."

Read more in the article on International Business Time site

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Is AI a Real Threat to the Human Race?


 It is a fact that Artificial Intelligence scares the crap out of some people.  The knowledge and
resources are in place that allow for the construction of more powerful AI systems.  It doesn't stretch the imagination that  such AI systems could reach the level of humans in intelligence and in doing so have the capability to construct AIs that could be far more intelligent than the original AI.  

Present AIs are fairly cute and simplistic.  However as the past has demonstrated, as the systems become more capable, more responsibilities will be shifted to them.  The question on a lot of people's minds are how long before we can no longer control these computer intelligences?

As the author postulates in the Irish Times Technology section:
  • Imagine how a medical robot, originally programmed to treat cancer, could conclude that the best way to obliterate cancer is to exterminate humans who are genetically prone to the disease.
People who support AI postulate that things like this would never happen - that programmers will  build in safeguards.  This, author Nick Bilton says in part, from programmers who can barely keep present day computers from crashing whenever you check just your e-mail

From the the Irish Times  article:
  • Elon Musk, recently said artificial intelligence is “potentially more dangerous than nukes”. Stephen Hawking, one of the smartest people on earth, wrote that successful AI “would be the biggest event in human history. Unfortunately, it might also be the last.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Philae Lands on Comet Comet 67P


http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/world/2014/11/12/nr-crane-mark-kelly-philae-comet-landing.cnn.html


After a heart stopping seven-hour descent, the ESA Philae space-craft has indeed made history by being the first spacecraft ever to land softly on a comet. 

Philae's mother-ship - the Rosetta orbiter, transmitted the signal confirming the successful touchdown.  

Rosetta was launched on 2 March 2004 and traveled over 4 billion miles through the Solar System before arriving at the comet on 6 August 2014.

The landing site, named Agilkia and is located on the head of the bizarre double-lobed object.  Soon after Rosetta arrived, it began taking photos from apx, 20 miles to as far away as 60 miles looking for a possible landing site. 

  • Those first images soon revealed the comet as a world littered with boulders, towering cliffs and daunting precipices and pits, with jets of gas and dust streaming from the surface. 

Philae was release at a distance of 15 miles and it made its decent, without propulsion or guidance.   


Over the next 2.5 days, the lander will conduct its primary science mission, assuming that its main battery remains in good health. An extended science phase using the rechargeable secondary battery may be possible, assuming Sun illumination conditions allow and dust settling on the solar panels does not prevent it. This extended phase could last until March 2015, after which conditions inside the lander are expected to be too hot for it to continue operating.



Sunday, November 09, 2014

A real hoverboard?! Yes, indeed!


Nerdist's video on hoverboards on YouTube
I just wanted to share with you guys real quick that there are finally real hoverboards that work via magnets! Like they say in the video, it has limitations and can't go over water and things like that. Still this is amazing stuff! I'm amazed at this (obviously!) but tell us what you think in the comments.
To learn more, check out the Kickstarter page here

BMU 431 is now online

Episode 431
I open with are review of the science fiction movie Snow Piercer I also note that Chris Hadfield's version of David Bowie's Space

Oddity is back on YouTube thanks to the man himself!

First story of the weekend is Episode 30 of the Dark Inspectre Jason Kahn.

From the BMU log:
You can win a ride into space for free!  Most stars may not be in a home galaxy...  The ISS almost had a close encounter with some space trash.  How about an astronomy first?  The first ever pictures of a proto, planetary system.  And the universe may have started out of nothing?

Final Story  Wizard's Bane ch5 pt1 by CrystalWizard

That's it!  Enjoy

Friday, November 07, 2014

The Universe Came From Nothing?!


I don't think we have to go over the big bang theory here do we?  You know the Universe began from an infinitely small point and expanded in all directions all at once.  We ok so far?  So the question is what came before the infinitely small point of space/time?

Well that has been the 10,000 dollar question as of late.  From the Slash-Dot article:
  • Cosmologists at the Wuhan Institute have published a proof that the Big Bang could indeed have occurred spontaneously because of quantum fluctuations. "The new proof is based on a special set of solutions to a mathematical entity known as the Wheeler-DeWitt equation.
The words that make my heart go pitter patter are 'quantum fluctuations' which the Wikipedia explains as  'the temporary change in the amount of energy in a point in space'

We know that energy can not be destroyed, simply changed and matter is just another form of energy.  So I would suspect that a temporary change in the amount of energy at any given point would result in a quantum particle.  If this particle is stable or not is moot, as long and the process once started does not stall.  Because at any given point an unstable quantum particle could evolve into a much more stable unit which given enough time and fluctuations could lead to a macro particle with a much higher energy potential plus the added attraction of being significantly more stable. 

The neat thing is, I  one heard this ripple, quantum energy flux first applied to the very end of the universe, when all matter has bled down to an even quantum state.  At some point a quantum fluctuation would bring about a temporary energy point and damn if that don't sound like the whole universe starting up again.

Here is the Wikipedia on quantum fluctuations

Thursday, November 06, 2014

ALMA Takes First "Baby" Pictures

The ALMA array in Chile has accomplished what will prove to be one of many firsts.  ALMA is the first telescope to take pictures of a proto-planet system that is actively in the process of making planets. 






Here is the complete PopularMechanic article





The ISS Has a Moment of "Gravity"



 In a moment reminiscent of Hollywood's 'Gravity', the ISS instead avoided being struck by space
debris. 

In late October, the ESA reported that the ISS lab was threatened with a collision by space junk.  The usual procedure is to have a docked Progress supply ship push the multi-toned craft out of harms way, which in this instance was a hand sized piece of metal from an earlier collision between a defunct Russian and an operational US satellite, traveling at 17000 mph.

The problem was however that there were none of the regular craft on station to pull duty until quick thinking controllers at the ESA ATV Control Center in Toulouse, France remembered that the ISS currently had the  Automated Transfer Vehicle Georges Lemaître, which ferries supplies to the station from Earth. The unmanned ship,  is controllable from Earth. Which meant that a team of engineers  at the ATV control center were able to use the supply craft to  move the ISS.

The Georges Lemaître, was instructed to fire its engine for 4 minutes which moved the ISS' orbit by one mile.

Complete Atlantic article HERE

As Many As Half of all Stars May Reside Outside of Galaxies



Scientists from the U.S., Japan & Korea have released a study that concludes that as many as half of all stars may not be affiliated with a galaxy but instead may have been pushed out of their parent galaxy by mergers and collisions.

Individually, these stars are way too faint to be detected, but collectively they create a background of fluctuating near-infrared light.   This diffuse glow is as bright as all the known galaxies combined and may mean that galaxies do not have sharp edges but soft boundaries that spread out to connect to other galaxies.

Read the complete ABC News article HERE

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Chris Hadfield's Space Oddity Back on YouTube!

Earlier this year Chris Hadfield (a Canadian astronaut)  posted a wonderful rendition of David Bowie's Space Oddity to YouTube (while he was doing an extended mission aboard the ISS) — It was later removed because of a lack of permissions. Now, David Bowie has given the go ahead for it to be online once more.  As a side note, YouTube shows the views as well over 23 million!


Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Philae's Landing Site Now Has a Name



The science spacecraft Rosetta's lander, designated Philae is due to land on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko November 12.  Up until recently the landing site was simply known as 'J'.  

The Philae steering committee, along with other agencies involved with the ESA Rosetta probe, asked the public for suggestions.  The name was finally narrowed down to Agilkia.  

Rosetta will release Philae on November 12 at a distance of 14 miles  from the center of the comet, with a scheduled landing about seven hours later at Agilkia.

Check out the complete article on Astronomy  HERE


Pixyfox Streaming Media for Manga & Anime Fans

This is what AnimeNewsNetwork has to say about Pixyfox:
  • Pixy Fox is an anime website with extensive unique features that will help you connect and discover new anime 
Pixyfox's press release says in part      
  • Pixy Fox will focus on creating a way which will connect Anime and Manga fans and allow their interest in the Anime and Manga to be pushed to the next level.    
 I had a chance to tool around the site and I will have to admit that I was largely unimpressed.  The idea is great but the implementation leaves something to be desired.   There are damn few videos on the site and the ones I did find were streaming by another site.  If this is all the site has to offer then it is of very limited use and if they plan on adding content, one has to wonder why they would roll out such a crippled site?


See what you think, I would be interested in your observations. 


http://www.pixyfox.com/

Monday, November 03, 2014

Win a Free Ticket For a Ride Into Space...



Yep, you read correctly!  The folks behind the movie 'Interstellar' have teamed up with XCOR Aerospace for a contest that will give an extremely lucky person a free space trip.

How you may be asking? Well according to the Yahoo article:
  • People who purchase their "Interstellar" tickets through the online site Fandango through Dec. 1 have a chance to win a free suborbital spaceflight aboard XCOR Aerospace's Lynx Mark II rocket plane. Seats aboard the vehicle normally sell for $100,000.
 For  more info  go HERE

Sunday, November 02, 2014

BMU #430 is now online


Yep, it is episode 430 of Beam Me Up on a cold and decidedly winterish weekend in Maine.

After my opening comments I play one of the opening pieces of music for the animated series RWBY called This will be the Day by Jeff Williams featuring Casey Lee Williams.

I follow this music with part two of the series Squeak Squeak by Michael Juby.

From the BMU blog  I mention the Virgin Galactic space plane failure.
Jarad sends me a couple of links to two extremely well made short films ABE and the other is Blinky.  These two are so well made as to be big screen quality.   Or how about the TSA agent who confiscated a toy ray-gun belt buckle...   John Anealio has a new Halloween themed album out.

The last story for the week is David Scholes Human Hunter - The British facility.

That's it for the weekend.  Enjoy!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Space Tourism Rocket Failure


Witness' say that Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo exploded during a test flight.

In an ABC News release that the space tourism craft was released from its shepherding plane (that  is used to carry it to high altitude) ignited its rocket motor and then exploded seconds later.

Witnesses put the wreckage in the desert north of Mojave Air and Space Port.

CHP's report states that there was one fatality and one major injury.  (SpaceShipTwo is flown by two pilots.)

Virgin Galactic has said little more than to confirm the loss of the craft but has given no details.
More ABC US news 

Two Short SF/Horror Flix That Will Surely Disturb & Entertain

One of my anime people is also a decidedly hard core science fiction fan.

In a recent post he send me a couple of robot based science fiction (with a healthy dollop of horror) links:

The first film is titled ABE ( http://www.abemovie.com/) which portrays a much loved house hold robot who loves his family back.  But when they stop, ABE must find a way to fix them.....





Next up is is Blinky   a kid's helper and playmate, who wants nothing more that to carry out his owner's wishes:






Thursday, October 30, 2014

TSA Confiscates Raygun Beltbuckle



Yes sir, you read that correctly - a TSA supervisor confiscated a raygun belt buckle belonging to one Sean Malone - Her reason being -  terrorism!  Wait, it gets better!

When Mr. Malone pressed the TSA agent for an explanation of the  confiscation, the agent's response was a hypothetical one of waving said belt buckle in a threatening manner.  This of course has to take place in front of a policeman in hopes he doesn't know the difference between a toy and as my mom would say his touchhole (use your imagination.....)

Sean has the bulk transcribed in this Boing Boing article HERE 

Don't you feel safer flying now?!!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

John Anealio releases a new album

 John Anealio just sent in a note to tell us about his newest album.    Here in part is what he wrote:

  • I put together four of my Halloween/October themed songs into one E.P.
  • You can click here to listen and download it for free (or pay what you want):
  • The Halloween E.P.
  • The E.P. includes A Stormtrooper For Halloween, Undead Love Song, Angels & Vampires, and Lonesome October Night.


Click HERE or the Halloween E.P. link in the article  for more information or to listen to a few of the tunes!

Monday, October 27, 2014

BMU # 429 is now online with the Halloween themed program


Well this is episode 429 of Beam Me Up and being that it is the last program of this October, I am going for our annual Halloween show.

The first item presented is a great piece of music from none other than the vocal group Manhattan Transfer doing Twilight Zone.  Nope, not that one by Golden Earring but one more closely attuned to the TV show of the same name.

Next a very unusual and wonderful short tale from Deborah Walker that combines a rural church in the English country side and quantum mechanics!


Colin Davies has graciously let me play Happy Halloween again.  This is a crystalWizard production and between the two of them, they turn out a great story.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

To the Moon & Back

CNN reports that China, in the very near future, will launch a craft  to the moon and then return to Earth, landing in Mongolia, a first for China's space agency. 

Previous Luna missions included a rover called the Jade Rabbit, which was fraught with technical difficulties and was designated incapacitated. 

China has also had good success with its manned missions to low Earth orbit, sending up several individuals and teams, since 2003.  But it is the unmanned missions that will grab the headlines in the coming months.

Ultimately China is aiming at a Luna probe mission, dubbed Chang’e-4, to take place possibly in 2015. and the Chang'e-5 in 2017 that will put a rover on the surface to collect samples, then returning them to Earth.

Read the complete CNN article HERE

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Things I Bet You Never Have Seen Before: High Speed Film of Apollo 11

I know, we have all seen the launch of Apollo 11 on its way towards history.  But I am willing to bet that most (myself included) have never seen footage of the launch taken at extremely high speed from various points around the craft.

In this great piece of film we see the frames from camera E8 on pad 39b shooting at 500 frames a second for about 8 minutes of watching but is in truth only about 30 seconds of real-time!

The film shows ignition of the 5 f-1 engines and lift-off.  The narration is wonderful in describing what it is we are seeing (quite frankly you could have told me it was the gates of hell opening and I would have had to consider it, just from the hellish amounts of flame and smoke ) .

I am stunned by just how much material is out there, but this short is an excellent jumping off point.

Enjoy!





Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Bwaiiinz! Yes Igor Let's Transplant Brains....

Ok, blame it on the season.  All levity aside, there has been some startling strides (really - no pun intended) being made in the field of brain tissue transplant.

Darek Fidyka was stabbed in the back four years ago,  paralyzing him from the chest down.

Now we hear of a stunning success after experimental treatments that Fidyka has regained some feeling in his lower body and is learning to walk again.  According to the Popular Science article, the treatment involved removing part of Fidyka's brain and then injecting those cells into the damaged area of his spinal cord.  

The tissue removed were olfactory bulbs (this is the part of the brain that allow you to smell) growing cells from the bulb and eventually injecting them.   Curiously the reason this brain tissue was used is because the nerves in the olfactory system are the only part of the human nervous system known to regrow after being damaged.  (Fidyka reported no ill effects from the removal)

Read full article HERE


BMU # 428 Now online

here we go guvna....

My opening comments for episode 428 are pretty much all over the place but I did manage to discuss some of the anime I have been following plus I jump down the x-37b rabbit hole.

My first piece of music is the opening to the Anime Series Wakfu, this series is without a doubt one of the oddest but most fun fantasy quests out there, and yes I am including One Piece.  The characters are thoroughly endearing and the quest is something of a secondary goal that I would thing it would be only the hardened few who would pass on this fun series.

After the music, I spend a few moments (because so much of my "tv" entertainment is now coming from alternative sources of which cable is  not even a strong minority.) wondering what might be coming once cable  loses its' strangle hold on tv entertainment.

Next up is CrystalWizard's Wizard Bane Chapter 4 pt3

From the blog Boeing's X-37b who's whole fleet of 2, One of which just returned from a 22 month mission.

A new animated movie called Ambition looks to be a wildly entertaining film.

Cassini has treated us to a wonderful high rez photo of Hyperion.

Alexandra Grenberg's "Echo" finishes off the afternoon. This enigmatic short story will give you a chill and in the end well, it WAS one simple act....

Direct access to podcast file HERE

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Airforce X-37b Returns


The Air-force's ultra secret, space shuttle looking, X-37b has returned from space to Vandenberg Air-force Base after an astonishing 674 days or 22 months.  That is virtually all the public knows about what the X-37b is conducting.  That and the enigmatic "on orbit experiments"

"The mission is our longest to date and we're pleased with the incremental progress we've seen in our testing of the reusable space plane," the Air Force said in a statement.

The Cnet news article went on to report that "The Air Force also said it plans to start the next X-37B mission sometime in 2015, launching from Cape Canaveral in Florida."
 
The X-37b space plane is unique in that the Air Force owns the entire fleet of two craft. 
 

"Ambition" a new sci-fi movie from Tomek Bagiński

Tomek Bagiński is not a name I am very familiar with but IS one that I am going to try and reverse that mistake.

His newest project is Ambition, which will see release in late October, looks to be a very interesting movie.   Check out the trailer below.



Ambition:  tells of a young apprentice struggling to master nanotechnology on an alien world and prove herself to her enigmatic master.

I really began to build interest after I saw  Bagiński's short  film The Cathedral, which got an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Short Film in 2002. 



"The Cathedral" is based on a story by Jacek Dukaj under the same title.   If the more (if I may)
Ambitious work is anywhere near the work of Cathedral then I suspect it is going to be a treat in its' own rite.



Friday, October 17, 2014

Space Going Wasp?!!!


This ultra hi resolution photo comes from the Cassini spacecraft, working hard out at Saturn.  This example is of Saturn's plane Hyperion which we can all agree that this is a wonderful photo but damn if this ultra crisp photo does not appear to be a space going wasp nest! 

This stunning view of Hyperion was obtained during Cassini's close flyby on Sept. 26, 2005.  The image were taken as Cassini passed about 310 miles above the moon's surface. Hyperion itself 165 miles in diameter.   The moon has a decided red coloration which was toned down so other false colors could be added to the photo to highlight the highly unusual landscape and the massive impact event.


You can read more at SPLOID blog   and more info from the Spaceflightnow blog


Thursday, October 16, 2014

BMU #427 now available






Well finally huh?!! lol  Here is episode 427.  The description is foreshortened so I can just get it listed.

Two stories this week:

A human Hunter story, David sent us Leaving the Kickass House
Second is chapter four, pt2 of CrystalWizard's Wizard Bane

Also selected articles from the Beam Me Up Podcast.




Friday, October 10, 2014

The Flash Review, (COOL)

            Well, the easiest thing to say first off, is that they did not screw it into oblivion. They actually did a pretty decent job all in all.
            It is far better already than the last attempt was all put together.
            They did alter the origin story somewhat, and you all know how I get at times about that. Not this time. They did alter it from the original, but in a way that works out fine.
            Apparently a lot of people think as I do, as it has a 9.4 for the pilot episode at moment of write up here.
            From my view point, (and knowing nothing of the new 52, or whatever silliness Dc is up to), it seems as though they basically combined old and new here. They are using the Meta Human concept like with Static, but he is still more the old style Flash and Barry Allen in his views on things.
            As to the effects. Well, I have to say not bad at all. Flash was always a problematic character in this respect. The live action attempt done in that TV fiasco back 1979 titled “Legends of the Superheroes” just had him vanishing from sight basically. The last one he looked silly to put it nicely, and so did their attempt at effects. This time it is more like the comic book in terms of his speed being seen as his name, The Flash, (including the streak  he leaves due to his speed), given to him in this series by Green Arrow.
            Well worth the watch. Always was a fan of The Flash, and this time they seem to be doing things right. Not original, but right. 

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

The Flash Pilot Tonight, Tuesday

     After weeks of hearing coming soon, it premieres tonight on WB. Thanks for the time and date you DC idiots. I just watched a commercial, that said premiering soon. Yeah, no crap, it's tonight. Just wanted to get this up for a notice folks. Since DC, or WB, or maybe both want to act like smart ass idiots for some reason now.
      Morons. I wonder if they will hide the Supergirl release date for that series also when they get it going. Freaking idiots.

Monday, October 06, 2014

Orion Closer to December Test Flight


In a recent NASA notice, the space agency reported that Orion was moved out of the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

NASA also noted that the Delta IV Heavy rocket, built by United Launch Alliance, made its move Tuesday night, to nearby Space Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. It was raised Wednesday from the horizontal position into its vertical launch configuration.


Orion now awaits the installation of  the launch abort system.


Once the launch abort system is stacked on the  crew and service modules,  the Orion spacecraft will be considered complete. It then will wait inside the launch abort system facility until mid-November, when the Delta IV Heavy rocket is ready for integration with the spacecraft.
 
NASA has already tested, processed and attached to each other the three Common Booster Cores of the Delta 4 Heavy,  to form the first stage that will connect to Orion’s service module.

Orion is capable of  providing living quarters for up to 21 days.   An additional habitat module will be made available for longer missions.  This will  provide extra space for crew and equipment.

Read the complete NASA release HERE



Sunday, October 05, 2014

A very funny Kerbal Space Program video!

 
Danny2462's YouTube video


Kerbal Space Program is a pretty awesome program that the user can creature a multitude of crafts from a pretty large selection of parts. The game is a really good sandbox (also the game creators are working on a challenging mode). Instead of the earth, we have Kerbin, home of the green Kerbals. As you might expect, the planets have different names, too.

   One YouTube user by the name of Danny2462 loves to find glitches and has fun creating all sorts of things in the game. In the past he made a "planet buster" of sorts, and in this video he makes another glitch discovery about a device he makes that has properties of a "planet buster". He experiments with the glitchy device he makes and the end result is quite a riot to behold!

More information about Kerbal Space Program can be found here:
https://www.kerbalspaceprogram.com/

Danny2462's YouTube channel can be found here:
https://www.youtube.com/user/Danny2462


Saturday, October 04, 2014

BMU #426 is NOW Online!


hoooooooooo! Yep it's that time of the week again. This week - episode 426. This week in my opening comments I discuss the time paradox in A Yankee in King Arthur's Court. Plus the stunning success of the Indian Mars mission.

My first story of the afternoon is by Jason Kahn and his Darke Inspectre series. Because I dropped the ball in September, and for continuity, I rerun episode 28 and continue straight on to episode 29.

Our next stop is the Beam Me Up blog, The first thing this week, what do you get the nero-scientist that has everything? How about a hard to believe demo of the state of CGI in the industry. SNC is calling foul with NASA's choice of Space X and Boeing when one of the selected companies was higher in its bid than SNC!

Finally Crystal Wizard's Wizard's Bane Book 1 ch4,pt1

Listen to the podcast HERE

Almost Sounds Like a Zombie Wedding!


There is an old tradition that not to many engaged couples practice just before marriage. 

It used to be highly popular for the bride and groom to be, to exchange small trinkets or gifts, now for the most part, these "gifts" take the form of wedding rings.  

I read an article where one groom took this tradition to a higher level.  As Michael Mack said recently on his blog:  "I wanted a special gift for my wife on our wedding day," 

It seems both of the soon to be newly weds  are neuro-scientists  at the University of Texas at Austin, studying human memory.

Michael had a 3D printing company,  print a  model of his brain using a scan he had done earlier.  He then put it in a jar, wrapped it up and sent it to her. 

Her maid of honor said that when his wife to be received the gift she exclaimed "Is this his brain? OMG!  Michael reported on his blog that she love the gift.

Read the complete c/net article HERE





Thursday, October 02, 2014

This Is the State of CGI!

Get ready to get your minds blown.....This has to be one of the best demos of high end CGI I have ever seen.


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

SNC Questions NASA Selection of Boeing and Space X for Commercial Crew Program Prize.

 Hey have you heard of this?
SNC (The Sierra Nevada Corporation) has filed a legal challenge to NASA's recent selection for the contract for the Commercial Crew Program prize.

NASA selected Boeing and its CT-100 and Space X with it's Dragon 2. 

SNC, in spite of not challenging any contract selection in over 50 years of doing business with NASA but felt justified in this case, when  NASA's own documents, "indicate there are serious questions and inconsistencies in the source selection process."

Sierra Nevada stated that the $6.8 billion in contracts announced for Boeing and SpaceX will cost taxpayers "up to $900 million more" than a choice that included Sierra Nevada.  


Gizmodo article HERE       AL News from Huntsville HERE


Monday, September 29, 2014

UFO keeping pace with ISS?

Here is a short video brought to us by Courtney who gives us all things weird and wonderful.
What we have here is a short video taken onboard the ISS September 21st.   The video seems to be
a glowing orb keeping pace with the International Space Station, which is in decaying orbit about 261 miles  above the Earth.

From what I have been reading this happens with some regularity.  I am not going to queer the comments by throwing in my 2 cents worth at the beginning.   Thoughts gentlemen....ladies?


BMU 425 is now online




This week on Beam Me Up - episode 425 - after my opening comments, I play the first of two music selections. This week, Monochrome Kiss by SID. Interesting selection from the world of Anime.

Next up is an article that you could say I used as a model for this week's program.  The article in question is the top six places of the Darwin award followed straight away by a fast piece of music from BECCA called appropriately enough "I'm Alive!" the closing theme to the anime series "Black Butler".

On the blog front, Kallamus joins us for his review of the Marvel series Agents of Shield.  His next review Brick Mansion doesn't miss a step and

Running out of time, I finish this weeks program with the final chapters to Isaac Asimov's "The Final Question"

And that is Beam Me Up episode 425  I hope you enjoy the program

Beam Me Up episode 425 can be downloaded from the podcast site www.beammeuppodcast.com or you can listen or download it from the FTP/Archive site HERE

Friday, September 26, 2014

Shield Premiere/ Brick Mansions

Shield
            Well, the easiest way to describe the premiere of season 2 is;
1)      Confusion
2)      Damn
They are seriously in a mess, and things are basically as we all kind of figured they would
be, a complete and total disaster for everyone involved.
            Coulson is the director now; the question is of what. There really isn’t a lot left to be director of, but he is still running around recruiting those he can find. He’s Coulson, what do you expect.
            Basically, once again we see Hydra being a pain right off the bat in the premiere, and actually managing it from WW2 and the time of the Red Skull.
            And as everyone knows Shield just loves collecting artifacts and alien tech etc, so you all see where this disaster is headed quickly. Basically, the first thing they ever took into custody that would fit into said categories, was being sold off by an ex-shield operative.
            There were also new allies in the picture, not all of which survived the first episode, which kind of sucks considering who didn’t make it.
            Absorbing man was portrayed pretty well also. Let’s remember this is a TV show, and not a full fledge movie here. They did a good job. But then, they have been doing a good job anyway in my opinion, and why all the hatred for Skye I see around the net I really don’t understand. Yeah she can be a bit naïve, but I am hoping she has learned her lesson. Whatever it is she turns out to be, at least she hasn’t been a secret hydra agent traitor, and would certainly be a valued member of any such team I would put together.  
            Anyway, one mission fails and another succeeds, pretty much at the same time. In other words, it’s Marvel disaster everywhere you turn.
            Stayed kind of vague I know, but for anyone that maybe hasn’t caught it yet, I didn’t want to give away anything major.
            Basically, they did it right, even with the screaming online about a certain escape. When you don’t know a person’s powers, you can get surprised pretty easy. And even if someone hasn’t yet been dropped from an airplane at 30,000 feet like they should be; and even if we don’t have a clue where a missing member actually is right now, I think they at least have a good season started with enough stories to make it through easily and keep everyone interested. I give it an 8.5. They lose a point for someone still being alive.

Brick Mansions
            Folks, this is a fun movie. It has a 5.7 on imdb, and I personally think it was rated by a bunch of smegging prigs.
            It stars Paul Walker, (No description needed for him I don’t believe), and David Belle the founder of Parkour.
            Basically, they wall off a part of Detroit, and let the people inside fend for themselves. Dystopian style somewhat, but set in 2018, so nothing big on post holocaust or any of that.
            Belle plays an Ex Con, and Walker is a cop. Yeah I know, everything in here has basically been done before, and sometimes on numerous occasions.
            I’ll make it simple. Forget the overall plot, and just watch this thing for fun, as it is meant to be watched. Here’s the link to the IMDB page. We just watched this on Amazon, and it was well worth the $2.99 or whatever it was.