Friday, October 1, 2010

2010 Ryder Cup


Yeah - let's continue to play in a torrential downpour! That's a true test of golf.




10 Common Misconceptions Dispelled

10 Common Misconceptions Dispelled

From: Misconception Junction Dot Com

Via - (NSFW)

Red Bull - It Gives You Wings


Thanks For Paying Taxes - Here’s A Receipt.

Taxpayers should get a receipt so they know what they're paying for, a think tank called Third Way argues in a new paper.

Here's a sample from the group. It includes federal income tax and FICA, which funds Medicare and Social Security. Details are here.


The Coriolis Effect

In physics, the Coriolis effect is an apparent deflection of moving objects when they are viewed from a rotating reference frame. In a reference frame with clockwise rotation, the deflection is to the left of the motion of the object; in one with anti-clockwise rotation, the deflection is to the right. The mathematical expression for the Coriolis force appeared in an 1835 paper by a French scientist Gaspard-Gustave Coriolis in connection with hydrodynamics, and also in the tidal equations of Pierre-Simon Laplace in 1778. Early in the 20th century, the term Coriolis force began to be used in connection with meteorology.

The Coriolis effect is caused by the Coriolis force. Newton's laws of motion govern the motion of an object in an inertial frame of reference. When Newton's laws are transformed to a rotating frame of reference, the Coriolis and centrifugal forces appear. Both forces are proportional to the mass of the object. The Coriolis force is proportional to the rotation rate and the centrifugal force is proportional to its square. The Coriolis force acts in a direction perpendicular to the rotation axis and to the velocity of the body in the rotating frame and is proportional to the object's speed in the rotating frame. The centrifugal force acts outwards in the radial direction and is proportional to the distance of the body from the axis of the rotating frame. These additional forces are termed either inertial forces, fictitious forces or pseudo forces.[1] These names are used in a technical sense, to mean simply that the forces vanish in an inertial frame of reference.

Perhaps the most commonly encountered rotating reference frame is the Earth. Because the Earth rotates only once per day, the Coriolis force is quite small, and its effects generally become noticeable only for motions occurring over large distances and long periods of time, such as large-scale movement of air in the atmosphere or water in the ocean. Such motions are constrained by the 2-dimensional surface of the earth, so only the horizontal component of the Coriolis force is generally important. This force causes moving objects on the surface of the Earth to appear to veer to the right in the northern hemisphere, and to the left in the southern. Rather than flowing directly from areas of high pressure to low pressure, as they would on a non-rotating planet, winds and currents tend to flow to the right of this direction north of the equator, and to the left of this direction south of the equator. This effect is responsible for the rotation of large cyclones (see Coriolis effects in meteorology).

Continue reading about the Coriolis effect.. (source)

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Don't Gross Out The World

Go take a little quiz to see how much you know about dinner time etiquette in different parts of the world! Click the pic..


Race Maps Of America

New York - The dots are so dense they almost cannot help but be separated - yet the Big Apple still has clear pockets of ethnicity.

These are the maps that show the racial breakdown of America’s biggest cities.

Using information from the latest U.S. census results, the maps show the extent to which America has blended together the races in the nation’s 40 largest cities.

With one dot equalling 25 people, digital cartographer Eric Fischer then colour-coded them based on race, with whites represented by pink, blacks by blue, Hispanic by orange, and Asians by green. Gray is other.

The resulting maps may not represent what many might expect Barack Obama’s integrated rainbow nation to look like, as many cities have clear racial dividing lines. (Click the name of each city to view its map.)

In New York, the boundaries are so intensely coloured that they can hardly avoid being integrated. While the different racial groups still have their own areas, it is one of the most diverse of the major urban cities.

Detroit, for example, is infamous for its divide between black and white. But the map shows such a clear separation along the Eight Mile beltway that it is startling - almost bordering on segregation.

The strict east-west divide in Washington DC is also well known - but chilling to see so starkly outlined on the map of the nation's capital.

And in Los Angeles, the Latino population dominates the poorer areas of the city.

But, reassuringly, the maps do show that not all American cities are so divided.

San Antonio: The Texan city blurs the lines better than most - though a divide can still be seen.

San Antonio in Texas paints a much better picture of integration, with whites and Hispanics blurring the boundaries and no real sign of a rich white enclave.

Another Texan city, Houston, also shows a richer diversity of races spreading out from the centre and Las Vegas boasts a good mix.

San Francisco also presents a better picture of racial integration together with a larger Asian contingent.

The maps have quickly become a source of fascination for bloggers, even though the data used is a decade out of date.

‘I’d love to see the income data presented this way, too,’ said one.

Good magazine's Andrew Price said: 'What do we, as a society, want to see in maps like this? I think it's safe to say that the clear separation of races in Detroit is a symptom (or cause) of serious social problems.

'At the same time,' he added, 'it seems unrealistic to expect perfect integration and it's unclear if we should want that anyway. It's great that our cities have vibrant ethnic neighbourhoods.'

The maps are based on information from the 2000 census, but Mr Fischer, 37, said in a blog on his Flickr site: ‘I intend to do a 2010 version as soon as the census finishes tabulating the data. I think the full release is planned for next June.’

He told the Washington Post: 'I always knew that cities had these racial divisions, but seeing them set out so graphically, that was the striking thing about them.'





11 Astounding Predictions That Came True

A super link from Charlie over at Interesting Pile:

Image Source

Many literary forecasts of our technological future have already come to pass: the atomic bomb, the submarine, and even the iPad. Discovering passages of science fiction that turned out to be eerily accurate predictions is certainly quite entertaining.

It’s also a point of controversy among Sci-FI enthusiasts. Eric Rabkin, a professor at the University of Michigan and the 2010 winner of the Science Fiction Research Association’s Pilgrim Award for lifetime achievement in science fiction scholarship, explains why.

“First, there’s the infinite monkeys problem. If you have an infinite number of monkeys randomly pounding on typewriters for an infinite length of time, the odds are 100% that at least one of them will … write Hamlet,” explains Rabkin. “In other words, with thousands of [science fiction] writers turning out tens of thousands of visions of the future, in what sense is any coincidence between a future element and what comes to pass a prediction?”

Image Source

Consider this a full disclosure: the following list is not exactly academic or even scientific. But the members of The Science Fiction Research Association who helped us compile this list agreed that these 11 science fiction prediction passages were entertaining enough to share.

The iPad: 1968
We all giggled earlier this year when Apple announced the iPad. Some of us made jokes about certain feminine products. But it looks like Arthur C. Clarke went down the the same naming route with the “newspad.”

2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke:

“When he tired of official reports and memoranda and minutes, he would plug in his foolscap-size newspad into the ship’s information circuit and scan the latest reports from Earth. One by one he would conjure up the world’s major electronic papers…Switching to the display unit’s short-term memory, he would hold the front page while he quickly searched the headlines and noted the items that interested him. Each had its own two-digit reference; when he punched that, the postage-stamp-size rectangle would expand until it neatly filled the screen and he could read it with comfort. When he had finished, he would flash back to the complete page and select a new subject for detailed examination…”

Furthermore, I've already posted an earlier article about Arthur C. Clarke's predictions from 1964. They go wayyy beyond the iPad. Here was the video from that post:

The Atomic Bomb: 1914
“Though the term ‘atomic bomb’ had been used before Wells, it seems that he came up with the term on his own, and he was the one who popularized it,” says Dr. Patrick B. Sharp, who discusses this connection in his book Savage Perils. “He was extrapolating from the work of Frederick Soddy, a British chemist who worked on radioactivity.”

Leo Szilard, who participated in the Manhattan Project, cited this specific passage in a letter to Hugo Hirst (which is part of a collection of letters in The American Atom):

“It is remarkable that Wells should have written those pages in 1914. Of course, all this is moonshine, but I have reason to believe that in so far as the industrial applications of the present discoveries in physics are concerned, the forecast of the writers may prove to be more accurate than the forecast of the scientists.”

The World Set Free by H.G. Wells:

The problem which was already being mooted by such scientific men as Ramsay, Rutherford, and Soddy, in the very beginning of the twentieth century, the problem of inducing radio-activity in the heavier elements and so tapping the internal energy of atoms, was solved by a wonderful combination of induction, intuition, and luck by Holsten so soon as the year 1933. From the first detection of radio-activity to its first subjugation to human purpose measured little more than a quarter of a century. For twenty years after that, indeed, minor difficulties prevented any striking practical application of his success, but the essential thing was done, this new boundary in the march of human progress was crossed, in that year. He set up atomic disintegration in a minute particle of bismuth; it exploded with great violence into a heavy gas of extreme radio-activity, which disintegrated in its turn in the course of seven days, and it was only after another year’s work that he was able to show practically that the last result of this rapid release of energy was gold. But the thing was done—at the cost of a blistered chest and an injured finger, and from the moment when the invisible speck of bismuth flashed into riving and rending energy, Holsten knew that he had opened a way for mankind, however narrow and dark it might still be, to worlds of limitless power.

Continue to the rest of this amazing article..


Special note: I personally left off the "Sci-Fi" in the title because I don't think many of these warrant a reference to science fiction - at least not in the sense that most non-SciFi enthusiasts would define science fiction.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Giant Monster Beach Landing


What a clever prank! And it's even better like this - viewed from above!

Which way did he go? Which way did he go?

Want Donuts


Receipts FAIL

Original Via



Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Letout Outlet

From the "why didn't I think of that" file, Relogik has created an electrical outlet that protrudes outward from the wall:

"Keep your electric outlets organized and safe while removing unnecessary clutter. Never have to search for an outlet multiplier again. Keep it simple, with only one push.… more By pressing the top of the outlet you release the rest of it's body and the remaining outlets that were hidden inside the wall. Push back when you don't need additional outlets."

What an incredible idea! Click the image for more info.


Muslims And Americans

Via - (NSFW)

If nothing else, at least it makes you think. Al Qaeda is such a tiny percentage of all Muslims (less than 1/200th of 1 percent, or about the same as comparing 1 cm to 1 mile) that the fear of Al Qaeda building a Mosque at ground zero is actually pretty ridiculous.

...but I would still probably vote against it.

Funny Police Chase

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Pros & Cons Of Pros & Cons


Today's Menu


I hope they serve salt & lime along with that.. And maybe a beer chaser.

Yay - Banana! Wait, What?


Poor Snail


But what an incredible photograph.

Blockbuster Is History


Sunday, September 26, 2010

The 100 Greatest Golf Shots Of All Time

Not a bad list compiled by the fine folks over at Zipgolfer Dot Com. As with any list I disagree with the ranking of a few of them, but I wouldn't envy the task of putting it together in the first place.

Here are a few of my favorites:

85. Woody Austin - From Water

I wish the results of the shot would've been shown, because if my memory is correct, the shot was a success. Nevertheless, as any golfer knows, it's hard enough to hit good shots when the ball is on the ground - let alone submerged under water.

81. Shaun Micheel hitting what is still one of the best high-pressure golf shots of all time - and on the 72nd hole of a major, to win: the 2003 PGA Championship.

78. Fred Couples wins the 1996 Players' Championship.

Freddie's one of my idols. The memory of this tournament's finish is one of my favorite memories.

71. A miraculous par save from nasty trouble at 2008's Colonial by Phil Mickelson.

69. Costantino Rocca's miracle - 1995 British Open at St. Andrews.

66. Corey Pavin's 4-Wood 2nd shot at the 72nd hole of the 1995 US Open at Shinnecock Hills.

59. Ben Crenshaw's 60-foot putt at #10 during the 1984 Masters. When listing the best putters ever to grace the game of golf, no one's top-5 is without gentle Ben.

51. Paul Azinger's sand shot at Muirfield Village #18 to win the 1993 Memorial.

35. Jack Nicklaus' 16th tee shot at the 1986 Masters, which he won at the age of 46.

32. Payne Stewart's US Open-winning putt in 1999 was huge! So sad Payne died in a plane crash later that year. His legacy lives on!

25. Jack Nicklaus' putt on #17 in the 1986 Masters. Surely you've seen the highlight by now.

5. Tiger's incredible chip at #16 in the 2005 Masters should be #2.

To see the entire article, please click here.

Via - (NSFW)