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Do a Barrel Roll
This week, we discovered one of Google’s best and most playful Easter eggs: if you enter “do a barrel roll” into a Google search bar, your browser will, well, do a barrel roll. Try it!
A Scanner Darkly
At Harvard, they’ve got a world-class treasure trove of astronomical data, enough to make any skywatcher jealous. The only problem: they’re in the form of half a million glass slides. Read more in our feature.
This week, the Perth Mint in Australia showed off the world’s biggest (and, predictably, the world’s most valuable) gold coin. It’s more than 30 inches in diameter and weighs over a ton. And it’s worth around $50 million. Read more at ABC.
Just like on The Simpsons, a three-eyed fish was caught in a reservoir which “receives water” from a nuclear power plant. This one, a wolf fish from Argentina, won’t be eaten, but submitted for testing. Read more at Discovery, especially if you’re in the mood for a fishin’/fission joke.
Pressed Plant Library
The Missouri Botanical Garden is home to millions of samples of pressed plants–these moveable stacks are filled with them–and now they’re working to bring the entire database online, creating an amazing digital archive of botany. Read more in our feature.
Build Down, Not Out
In Mexico City, by far the biggest city in North America, there’s absolutely no more room to build, especially if your plan is for a giant 70-story building. So BNKR Arquitectura, a Mexican architectural firm, decided to think outside the box. Sorry, below the box. This concept proposes the plaza be built directly below the Zocalo, or city square. It’s essentially an inverted skyscraper, hence the moniker “Earthscraper.” Read more over at SmartPlanet.
The PopSci Archive Explorer
Forgive us if we toot our own horn a little, but seriously, you guys, we are really proud of this one. The Archive Explorer gives a visual look at the frequency of any term or phrase throughout Popular Science’s entire 139-year history. Want to see when the word “robot” came into being? How about our entire coverage of flying cars? Check it out here.
Says our own Clay Dillow: “The German Aerospace Center (which goes by its German acronym DLR), [built] a “space tunnel”: an 8,344 cubic foot vacuum chamber capable of space-like temperatures hovering just above absolute zero.” Read more in this article.
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You're reading The Most Amazing Science Images Of The Week, October 31
Max Read over at Gawker turned us on to this amazing Shutterstock series, mysteriously titled “Cyber Woman With a Corn.” What could you use this photo to illustrate? What couldn’t you use it for? Read more at Gawker
There are lots of amazing images in this week’s roundup; there’s the likely discovery of a massive former ocean on Mars, there’s a purple squirrel, there’s an incredible augmented reality project, and lots more. But we can’t stop looking at–and thinking about–the noble Cyber Woman With A Corn.
The purpose of the zebra’s striped coat is a deep mystery to biologists. But according to a new study, they evolved that way to confuse and keep away a certain type of blood-sucking fly. The test involved life-sized sticky horse-models. Read more here.
This deep sky object, known as NGC 6572, is over 10 billion years old–one of the most ancient collection of stars ever seen. In fact, it’s more than twice as old as our own solar system. Read more at NASA.
The PopSci offices are pretty cool; there are usually robots and all kinds of gadgets around to play with. But these LEGO offices look amazing, and we’ve been in a LEGO-friendly mood ever since our own Corinne Iozzio began her LEGO master training. Read more about the offices over at FastCoDesign.
Get the Ball!
Seth Casteel’s photographs of underwater dogs collected here (his site appears to be down due to excessive traffic) are amazing. I don’t even like dogs, really, but look at how happy and determined they are! I hope they get the ball.
Cyber Woman With Corn
Max Read over at Gawker turned us on to this amazing Shutterstock series, mysteriously titled “Cyber Woman With a Corn.” What could you use this photo to illustrate? What couldn’t you use it for? Read more at Gawker.
In a small town in Pennsylvania, a couple found a purple squirrel. chúng tôi of all places, found the story, and is investigating to their full abilities. Make sure to read their coverage to see what their senior meteorologists think of this purple squirrel.
“Like a Fat DeLorean”
The new Tesla Model X is a crossover, based on the same platform as the Model S, which is not out yet. It’ll be a plug-in electric vehicle, and yeah, it has gullwing doors. Read more over at Jalopnik.
Says the ESA: “New results from the MARSIS radar on Mars Express give strong evidence for a former ocean of Mars.” It’d be a massive ocean, covering a major part of the northern hemisphere of the planet. Read more here.
As you reflect on the transition from one year to the next, consider some of the science and tech stories that have made 2023 a great year. Here are the ones that made us smile:Gravitational waves got even cooler
Yes, using gravitational waves—tiny ripples in the fabric of spacetime—to detect black hole collisions was cool. But in 2023, the hunt for gravitational waves leveled up in a major way. In September, scientists announced the first-ever detection that combined the powers of LIGO with a new Italian observatory called Virgo. You can read more about why three detectors are so much better than two here.
And it just kept getting better. In October, researchers published evidence of colliding neutron stars, also detected using gravitational waves. The goings-on of these intensely dense celestial bodies could help us understand the origins of our own solar system. Scientists estimate that a single neutron star collision could produce 100 Earth masses worth of gold, a few hundred worth of platinum, and tens of uranium.The rocket so nice they flew it twice
This year SpaceX finally proved that its rockets are reusable. The private spaceflight company estimates that by reusing its liftoff boosters rather than tossing them away in the sea, it can slash launch costs by about 30 percent, providing cheap(er) access to the final frontier.Farmers fighting to save the world
In September, we introduced you to the Nebraska farmers who’ve found themselves in an unexpected position—environmental activists fighting against fossil fuel companies. Read more here.
A 2023 aerial view of crop art on Art Tanderup’s farm in Nebraska. Designed by artist John Quigley, it reflects the Tanderup’s commitment to investing in renewable energy. Art TanderupThe entire planet could run on renewable energy
We’re running out of time to fight the worst effects of human-caused climate change, and that’s nothing to be thankful for. But a study out in August did give us a little hope. According to that analysis, the planet is perfectly capable of switching to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050. There’s nothing to it but to do it. In the meantime, here’s some information on how individuals can start fighting back against climate change.If everything else on Earth died, tardigrades would probably survive
Blessed are the moss piglets for they shall inherit the Earth. You might not be thankful for this news, but I, for one, welcome our future water bear overlords. They’ll probably leave our planet better than they found it.A robot that hugs your heart to keep it pumping
In January, researchers unveiled an adorable, squishy robot designed to keep a sick heart pumping while waiting for a transplant—or perhaps even indefinitely. There’s still a lot more work to be done, including long-term studies in animals (and then humans). But if the experiments continue to be successful, the robot may one day provide an alternative to the current treatment for severe heart failure.A lifesaving use of gene therapy
If you regularly read science news, you might think that scientists are obsessed with stem cells. Many of them are, and for good reason: They have an incredible ability to develop into almost any type of cell found in the body. Now that technologies exist to more reliably tweak the human genome, the idea of growing healthy tissues and organs as-needed is sounding less and less like science fiction. In a paper out this month, researchers report replacing almost all of a seven-year-old boy’s outer skin layer to treat his life-threatening skin condition, a genetic disease called epidermolysis bullosa.A true breakthrough in cancer treatment
After the successful treatment of two twins with leukemia using genetically modified immune cells, the FDA stamped its approval on CAR T-cell immunotherapy, a totally new way of fighting cancer. Now named Kymriah by the pharmaceutical company Novartis, the treatment is approved for children and young adults with a recurrent form of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a blood cancer. Traditional therapies like chemotherapy and radiation only target the cancer cells and tumors themselves. You need different types of drugs depending on the type of cancer, and once you stop giving a person the treatment, it quickly leaves the body or stops working. This treatment, and all immunotherapies to a certain extent, target the person’s immune system and harness it to fight the cancer. In theory, it works just like a vaccine: once the immune system is coaxed into fighting the unhealthy cells, it should keep fighting them for a lifetime.
Jupiter’s moon could hide life. NASA/JPL-Caltech/SETI InstituteThe hunt for life marches on
There were several promising studies on the habitability of other planets this year, but we’ll just focus on a few of our favorites.
A February study reported organic compounds on Ceres, a dwarf planet in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. It’s unlikely that any life exists on this tiny body, but the molecular building blocks suggest it might once have been a prime spot for organisms to evolve. If organics and water ice do litter the asteroid belt, it could explain how Earth got its water and the building blocks of life. Planetary scientists think that during the early days of the solar system, Earth was too hot for those things to develop, and may instead have received the molecules from incoming asteroids and comets.
In April, researchers announced that Enceladus—one of Saturn’s moons—seems to have just about every ingredient you need to make and support life. The moon has an ocean beneath its surface, and all signs point to deep-sea hydrothermal vents, the likes of which produce heat and key chemical reactions to support some marine life on Earth.
Things may really heat up in the hunt for life on icy moons. This year, NASA released a report outlining its plan to land on Jupiter’s moon Europa as soon as 2031. An orbiter will visit sooner, but a lander could theoretically drill down into the ocean to search for life directly. That’s pretty big news: NASA usually talks about investigating habitability—whether or not a planet or moon or comet or asteroid could support life. With Europa, the agency is willing to state their mission plan as looking for direct evidence of life itself.
On the previous phase of its 19-year mission, Cassini made many orbits of Saturn, shown here in blue. NASA JPLOur beloved Cassini
This isn’t a happy story, but it’s the science story we’re most grateful for of all. In September, after 13 years in orbit around Saturn and its moons, the Cassini spacecraft bid us adieu and plunged to a fiery demise. It is impossible to even know the breadth of scientific knowledge this single space robot imparted to us, as scientists will continue poring over the mission’s data for years to come. But we already know for certain that the spacecraft has radically altered our understanding of Saturn, the solar system, and the hunt for life on icy moons. RIP, buddy.
“Joely is highly motivated, and her game is very good,” says coach Maureen Phillips, reflecting on the tennis prowess of an eighth grader at Gilbert Stuart Middle School. The school, named after the American artist whose portrait of George Washington adorns the one-dollar bill, is in the Lower South Side of Providence, Rhode Island, a predominantly immigrant neighborhood of shuttered factories and small but well-tended duplexes.
The Lower South is physically and psychologically cut off from the urbanity and opportunities of downtown Providence by Interstate 95. This isolation makes Gilbert Stuart an important one of the six host sites for the Providence After School Alliance (PASA) and the City of Providence’s AfterZones. This citywide network of after-school programs is geographically split into three zones that connect two or three schools in each zone with nearby after-school providers. Programs available through each AfterZone have given local kids like Joely a chance to shine in a sport once as little considered in the tough Lower South as the artist after whom the middle school is named.
It’s three o’clock on a Thursday afternoon, and the school’s gym reverberates with the squeals and sneaker squeaks of a dozen excited PASA kids warming up for their AfterZone tennis class. Watching Joely fire unreturnable serves, Coach Phillips ticks off the qualities in her star player’s game: “She can do it all — forehand, backhand, and volley,” Phillips reports about the 13-year-old whose family emigrated from Venezuela, and who had never even held a tennis racket until signing up for the program two years before.
Since its 2004 founding, PASA has grown into an umbrella organization and an orchestrator of more than 60 after-school programs that occupy the interest, creativity, and late afternoons of nearly 2,000 Providence middle school kids. The sports, arts, and skills enrichment programs include basketball, tennis, capoeira, break dancing, guitar, cooking, sailing, video production, and others. These activities can take place on or off school sites; on-site enrichment programs last one or two hours, and off-site activities at provider locations last two and a half hours.
PASA’s Club AfterZone, located in Providence middle schools, gives students the flexibility to alternate their on-site enrichment activities with an additional “learning time” session, during which students receive individual help on schoolwork from volunteers, many of whom are students at local colleges. These one-hour segments can also be dedicated to other “zones,” such as Chill Zones, that involve kids with lower-key game play, reading, and math exercises.
At the end of each day, PASA offers 5 p.m. bus rides home, by which time working parents have returned to welcome home Providence’s middle school kids. “PASA completes a seamless, full day of great learning opportunities,” Salmons says about the program, which has won a five-year, $5 million Wallace Foundation Grant.
At the beginning of the 2007 school year, Joely brought PASA’s AfterZone brochure home, and, with her mother’s encouragement, she signed up for a karate course. After learning through a school announcement about after-school tennis classes sponsored in conjunction with the U.S. Tennis Association, she then decided to try tennis because her relatives in Venezuela were playing.
Joely immediately stood out from the crowd, her natural tennis ability recognized almost as soon as she picked up a racket in the PASA/USTA after-school class. The school year ended on a huge high for Joely with a scholarship to the July 2007 Nike Tennis Camp, held in Massachusetts, where Joely got to know kids from Germany, Israel, and Mexico and rubbed tennis elbows with celebrities like John McEnroe and Tim Courier.
The experience has done wonders for Joely’s game, not to mention for her self-esteem. “I like tennis because when I beat another player, it feels good,” Joely says in a tone that makes clear she would rather be out on the court playing than stuck in a boring interview. More importantly, she says, “I like tennis because you can get places.” And what places would she like tennis to take her? “I want to go to Classical High School,” she says, naming one of Providence’s most prestigious college preps, “and then on to Harvard and Harvard Law School.”
Upping the Academic Ante
To achieve what are huge goals in Providence’s Lower South, Joely understands that she needs to do more than play great tennis. This has led her to sign up for another two-day-a-week PASA program, an art class helping augment her regular school-day course load with additional opportunities to sharpen her critical competence and artistic ability.
Joely’s after-school week begins, in fact, in what is called the Teen Ambassador Club, a course held at Gilbert Stuart Middle School on Monday and Wednesday afternoons focused both on the expression of creativity and basic techniques of painting and drawing.
During one recent Monday TAC class, Joely and a half-dozen of her fellow students discussed the AIDS crisis with their two PASA volunteer teachers. In two hour-long sessions, students explored various ways to dispel the stigma attached to being HIV positive, during which, according to Joely, “we learned that people with HIV couldn’t hurt you.” After the discussion, the kids moved to their easels to paint posters reflecting what they had just talked about. Joely’s painting featured the Grim Reaper lurking behind a girl with HIV who was sitting and crying while those around her were smiling as if nothing was wrong. “My message,” she says, “was, ‘Stop pleasing the Angel of Death.'”
Joely returned to finish the poster on Wednesday, that week’s second TAC meeting. Following both her art and tennis classes, Joely’s after-school week continues with an hour in HomeworkZone, a part of the Club AfterZone schedule. For the most part, Joely uses this time to brush up on prealgebra, a course she knows she needs to excel in to win admission next year to Classical High School.
Joely is a bit disappointed there is no AfterZone on Fridays. What does she do instead? “I go home, relax, and stay with my family,” she says. Not to mention counting down the hours until Tuesday and her next tennis class.
Richard Rapaport is a journalist and consultant in San Francisco.
The world is now an ocean of data. Everywhere you look, there is data. The simplest examples can be found on your smartphone. For instance, the order history on your e-commerce account will show you how much and what type of items you have ordered in the last six months and their order value. Your OTT streaming account will have information about the shows you are watching along with their genres and typically, at what time of the day you watch your favorite shows. The list goes on and on. Every company on the planet today has these data oceans (technically, can be called data lakes), which they can use to understand and potentially serve their customers better. Corporations also leverage data to increase profitability and provide the best customer experience. Monopolies are hard to find in any competitive industry landscape today. Companies are thriving by offering superior products with the best purchasing and sales experience at an optimum cost, resulting in maximized profits. These are some of the areas where data is used at every step of the way to find solutions and increase efficiency, productivity, and profitability. What is the best product or service for a customer? How does the need change from one customer to another? If I like a watch from Brand A, would you choose the same brand as well? If I like to order biryani, would you order paneer masala from your food delivery app? What is best for customer A, may not be the ideal choice for customer B. The entire pre-sales experience is about how companies customize solutions as per customer needs. Now you need to ask yourself, “how do we customize solutions for an individual customer?”, and “what do you need to achieve that?” Here, the Art is to determine how to solve customer problems in a cost-efficient way while ensuring they receive a best-in-class experience. Interestingly, Art goes hand-in-hand with the Science of executing it. The Data Engineering & Machine Learning infrastructure behind this is the science of it all that takes place in the background. On one hand, the Data Engineers will ensure that the data is captured, stored, and recycled effectively and efficiently. While on the other hand, the AI-ML teams would be on top of the algorithms that will talk to the systems and crunch the customer’s real-time data to decide the most accurate and relevant options. The world is increasingly becoming digital with each passing day. In the past decade, most of our activities have gone digital – from ordering vegetables to official meetings. This is not even the tip of the iceberg. Globally, across many regions, digital adoption still remains underpenetrated by a huge margin, largely due to inaccessibility to the internet. Even then, with the considerable amount of digital activity that we are currently accumulating, our data ocean is increasing at a rapid pace. Hence, the eagerness to harness Data Infrastructure &Data Science is increasing as well. This is nothing but a means to collect and interpret data to achieve the best possible results. In my opinion, Data Engineering & Data Science will be the most sought-after stream of study in the coming years. There are many studies across the world that will infer the same. Tomorrow’s business owners and product managers will need to understand these areas like never before. Every single business decision needs to be driven by data and not my gut feeling. There are insights that are hidden in the data. We need Data Scientists to uncover those secrets and present them to the business leaders to make informed, data-supported decisions that are unlikely to go wrong. In the next century, the companies that are able to leverage and accurately interpret Big Data and bring it to action will have a higher chance of success. Author
Midjourney AI, a Discord bot that enables you build wonderful images with simple language instructions, is a fun and easy method to create stunning images with artificial intelligence. OpenAI’s DALL-E, a neural network that can generate visuals from any text description, powers Midjourney AI. Midjourney AI may be used to create memes, logos, portraits, landscapes, cartoons, and more. In this article, we will show you how to use Midjourney AI on Discord and some of the cool things you can do with it.How to Access Midjourney AI on Discord
Create a Discord account: You can create a Discord account for free. After creating an account, you’ll need to confirm your email address.
Go to the Midjourney Discord server.
Log in with your Discord account.
Subscribe to a Midjourney plan: Midjourney offers three subscription plans:
Basic Plan: $8 per month
Standard Plan: $24 per month
Pro Plan: $48 per month
Mega Plan: $96 per month
You can subscribe to a plan by going to the Midjourney website signing in with your Discord account.How to Use Midjourney AI on Discord
To generate images with Midjourney after subscribing to a plan, simply enter the following command in any Discord channel: Just type “/imagine” followed by a text description of what you want Midjourney to create./imagine [your prompt]
For example, to generate an image of a cat wearing a hat, you would type the following command:/imagine cat wearing a hat
When you give the Midjourney bot your prompt, it will begin generating a picture for you. You have the option to alter and download the generated picture according on your needs.
Please keep in mind that the Midjourney bot may take some time to process and present you with the results. It often creates four alternative images depending on the given prompt, providing a variety of aesthetic possibilities.
When you initially use Midjourney, you will begin a free trial period of around 25 image generations. A premium account subscription is required for continuing use of Midjourney. You can use the “/info” command on the Midjourney Discord server to keep track of your trial progress.
ADVERTISEMENTHow to Get the Most Out of Midjourney
To obtain results from Midjourney, using it for AI art creation requires more than just inputting your desired outcome and expecting the art bot to understand your intentions magically. Instead, there are several approaches available to ensure you get the precise results you seek from Midjourney’s AI art generation capabilities.
Below the “U” buttons, you’ll find the “V” buttons, which work in a similar way as the “U” buttons but focus on creating variations of the selected image. These variations maintain the overall structure and style of the chosen image. This option is useful when Midjourney produces an image that is similar to what you want but not quite perfect.
Additionally, there is a “redo” button that repeats the same prompt but generates entirely new results. You can use this button as many times as you like to refine your preferences when you’re already close to achieving the desired outcome.
To obtain desirable results from Midjourney, it’s crucial to master the art of crafting effective prompts. If you aim to generate the finest AI art through Midjourney, it’s important to provide it with the appropriate information.
When formulating your prompt, you can specify desired art styles, colors, or themes to guide Midjourney’s creative process. It seems that Midjourney tends to yield better responses when these details are separated by commas. For instance, if you have a particular art style in mind, make sure to include it in your prompt along with other relevant preferences.
To enhance the quality of results from Midjourney, you have the option to include parameters in your prompt. Midjourney offers a variety of parameter options that allow you to fine-tune the output of your AI art.
For instance, if you have specific size requirements for your image, you can utilize the aspect parameter. By default, Midjourney generates square images, which may not be ideal if you intend to use the AI art as your desktop background. The aspect parameter enables you to instruct Midjourney to generate art that matches the resolution of your computer, ensuring a more suitable outcome.
Also Read: How to Use Midjourney V5.2 zoom out featureConclusion
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