When the 2017 Perseid meteor shower peaked over last weekend, no one was expecting an amazing show. After all, the August moon had just passed its full phase and threatened to outshine all but the brightest Perseid fireballs. Yet, one dedicated stargazer in Redondo Beach, California, ventured out in search of dark skies anyway to see what the Perseids would bring. The result was a spectacular one-in-a-million meteor photo.
While scientists are still in heated debates about what exactly consciousness is, the University of Arizona’s Stuart Hameroff and British physicist Sir Roger Penrose conclude that it is information stored at a quantum level. Penrose agrees –he and his team have found evidence that protein-based microtubules—a structural component of human cells—carry quantum information— information stored at a sub-atomic level. Penrose argues that if a person temporarily dies, this quantum information is released from the microtubules and into the universe. However, if they are resuscitated the quantum information is channeled back into the microtubules and that is what sparks a near death experience. Researchers from the renowned Max Planck Institute for Physics in Munich are in agreement.
The Debrief: Frankie’s first psychedelic experience wasn’t with acid or magic mushrooms, but with something more fabled for its spiritual powers. ‘It was very vibrant and bright. People’s faces became bright yellow and their skin really smooth. It looked like a 90s computer game. It’s the most out-there experience I’ve ever had, but it’s not made me grow as a person.’ This article carries sound advice: While taking any illicit substance carries risks, the best way to stay safe when taking DMT (dimethyltryptamine) is to be mindful of the setting. Do some research into the substance, it’s health effects, and take it familiar surroundings with people you trust.
Attempts to scientifically categorise and understand the depth of personal psychedelic experience, (particularly the more decadent and visionary states that can be attained through high doses or skillful use), are often left severely lacking in regard to an appreciation of the otherworldly grandiose, eerie and often cartoonishly comical tricks and turns that can be visited upon the voyager. In a manner similar to the attempts of early anthropologists, attempting to really grasp or grapple with the fullness and rich texture of the subject is an impossible feat to achieve from the sidelines. In this article a scientist explains his personal experiences with the compounds found in Morning Glory Seeds.
Details the history and geology of Kartchner Caverns in Arizona. Studying, mapping, and opening the caves to the public was a major undertaking for the state of Arizona. It took 11 years and cost $28 million. In 1999 — 25 years after discoverers first entered Xanadu in 1974 — two rooms of Kartchner Caverns State Park opened for public view for the first time. Today, visitors to Kartchner Caverns can go on tours of many of the rooms, including the Throne Room (which contains one of the world’s longest soda straws), and the Big Room, which is closed each year from April through October to accommodate nursery roosting for cave bats.
Written by an astrophysics professor and self-described ‘evangelist of science’. Here is an excerpt: In the end, however, it’s all worth it (unless I get eaten by a bear). As a scientist, I’ve spent my whole life trying to get closer to the world and understand its ways more deeply. That means going to the source. But there is no greater source for science, for the inspiration to do science, than the wild. That’s where the sense of sacredness — that I think lives at the root of science’s aspiration — lives. As the great John Muir put it, “Keep close to Nature’s heart and break clear away, once in a while, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” Now, if only the bears have read Muir.
Today, the lace-trimmed windows have faded into the distant past, and have made way instead for houses with tiled façades built choc-a-block. The trams only trundle in people’s memories; the tracks nowhere to be seen. Motor cars, autorickshaws and two wheelers instead are the preferred modes of transport. Where once sea waves lashing the shore was a familiar background sound, now it is drowned out by the excited chatter of little boys in blue who spill out of the gates of school attached to St. Peter’s church. First opened in 1856, Royapuram is home to the oldest surviving railway station on the Indian subcontinent.
Five-thousand-year-old rock art is tucked into an outcropping 40 miles northeast of Hargeisa, the capital of this breakaway region of Somalia. But its ambiguous political status has made protecting the site especially challenging.
A geophysical survey of the site near Beacon Hill Lane carried out in 2015 revealed a hexagonal shaped temple structure which is very rare in Roman Britain. This year the plan has been to extend both the main and extension trenches to the east, as well as the excavation of the main site. The work has also led to an adjacent room believed to be a bathhouse, as well as artifacts from the Roman period and Iron Age, some of which predate the temple’s construction by a couple centuries.
A team of archaeologists, students, and local volunteers have been investigating prehistoric mounds in the fields of the village of Kirk Michael for the past 12 months. The Isle of Man is home to about 60 round barrows – human burial sites found throughout the British Isles and Europe, which first appeared around 3800-3600 BCE in the Neolithic and late Bronze Age. Finds so far include parts of a burial urn, flint tools, and a hide scraper with beveled edges. The team hopes that modern techniques will reveal more glimpses of Manx prehistory.
A tall thin shape was recently caught on camera by a group of researchers investigating a newly-formed crop circle near Avebury in Wiltshire. At first, they believed it to be a person standing away in a field, however, many people believe crop circles are a paranormal occurrence caused by aliens or other unexplained forces.
When scientists first confirmed their existence in the San Gabriel River in 2008, the group of young green sea turtles were thought to be oddballs or lost wanderers. The federally endangered species usually is found in tropical haunts, amid coral reefs or on the sandy beaches where they lay their eggs. But this colony of around 100 of them cavorts in the southern end of the murky brackish river, where tainted urban runoff mixes with tidal flows in the shadows of electric power plants and the 405 Freeway. Federal scientists and an army of volunteers are coming up with answers to some of the riddles the turtles pose.
Hedgehog research lends itself very well to citizen science. The animal is impossible to confuse with any other species, people love them, and they share our gardens. Add to this the very real problem of dramatic population decline – down by about a third in urban areas and more than half in rural areas since the turn of the century – and we have motivation to act.
We’ve sent several probes to Saturn over the years, but none has been as successful as the Cassini spacecraft, which has been orbiting the gas giant since 2004. Cassini has made hundreds of groundbreaking discoveries of Saturn and its moons, but the mission is winding to a close, and Cassini will cease to exist a month from now. But that doesn’t mean that Cassini’s job is done yet; there are still many more discoveries the spacecraft can make before the end. On Monday, Cassini took the first step toward making one more. It became the first spacecraft to dip into Saturn’s atmosphere.
An archaeological treasury – the voluminous collection of papers, slides, research notes, recordings, jokey postcards, and miscellaneous bits of long-dead human beings collected by the late paleopathologist Calvin Wells – is to be digitized to make it available in its eccentric entirety to scholars for the first time.
The popularity of drone use in agriculture has increased over the past few years, and drones are now being used around the world to herd animals like cows and sheep. People who move herds over large swaths of land are saying it’s a more efficient and effective way to get the job done, and it allows them to keep an eye on the land and cattle more easily.