Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Before Stonehenge

Ancient complex discovered near Stonehenge - Los Angeles Times: "Archeologists working near Stonehenge in England have discovered an ancient religious complex containing a treasure trove of artifacts that may finally illuminate the lives and religious practices of the people who built the mysterious monument 4,600 years ago, British archeologists said Tuesday..."

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Chips II

BBC NEWS | Technology | Chips push through nano-barrier: "Critical leaks

...The development means the fundamental 'law' that underpins the development of all microchips, known as Moore's Law, remains intact.

The proposition, articulated by Intel co-founder Gordon Moore in 1965, states that the number of transistors on a chip could double every 24 months.

After more than 10 years of effort, we now have a way forward
Tze-chiang Chen, IBM
The new Intel processors, codenamed Penryn, will pack more than four hundred million transistors into a chip half the size of a postage stamp.

Like current processors, they will come in dual-core and quad-core versions, meaning they will have two or four separate processors on each chip. The company has not said how fast the new devices will run.

The production of 45nm technology has been the goal of chip manufacturers ever since they conquered 65nm transistors..."

Chips I

BBC NEWS | Technology | Chips push through nano-barrier: "Chips push through nano-barrier
45 nanometre test wafer

New materials have had to be developed to shrink the transistors
The next milestone in the relentless pursuit of smaller, higher performance microchips has been unveiled.

Chip-maker Intel has announced that it will start manufacturing processors using transistors just 45 nanometres (billionths of a metre) wide..."

Chips 0

Intel Says Chips Will Run Faster, Using Less Power - New York Times: "By JOHN MARKOFF
Published: January 27, 2007

Intel, the world’s largest chip maker, has overhauled the basic building block of the information age, paving the way for a new generation of faster and more energy-efficient processors..."

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Earth's Moon Destined to Disintegrate - Yahoo! News

Earth's Moon Destined to Disintegrate - Yahoo! News: "
Earth's Moon Destined to Disintegrate

David Powell
Special to Mon Jan 22, 10:15 AM ET

The Sun is midway through its stable hydrogen burning phase known as the main sequence. But when the Sun enters the red giant phase in around 5 billion years things are going to get a lot rougher in the Earth-Moon system.

During the red giant phase the Sun will swell until its distended atmosphere reaches out to envelop the Earth and Moon, which will both begin to be affected by gas drag-the space through which they orbit will contain more molecules.

The Moon is now moving away from Earth and by then will be in an orbit that's about 40 percent larger than today. It will be the first to warp under the Sun's influence..."

Rare sight of ancient shark |

Rare sight of ancient shark | "Jan. 24 - A shark with the ugly proportions of the pre-historic era has surfaced near Japan offering a rare view of this denizen of the deep.

The 'Frilled Shark' is hardly ever seen because its habitat is 600 metres or more below the ocean surface.

Jennifer Marostica reports.

Pictures of the Frilled shark courtesy of Awashima Marine Park

© Reuters 2006. All rights reserved."

Rail Gun

U.S. Navy Invents Railgun

Tech0604magnet_170x200The mighty railgun, that hitherto-unfeasible weapon most beloved of gamers and geeks the world over, is now a functional reality thanks to the U.S. Navy, which has produced a working 8-megajoule electromagnetic mass driver.

Spotted at the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Virginia, the navy's new weapon of choice fires but a single shot at once, unlike the hypothetical counterpart featured in classic FPS Quake. But what a shot is is, offering a 250 nautical-mile range (with an apogee of 95 miles from the Earth's surface!) and enough kinetic energy to equal the destructive power of a million-dollar missile.

Monday, January 22, 2007

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Flying dinos had bi-plane design

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Flying dinos had bi-plane design: "Flying dinos had bi-plane design
Microraptor Image: PNAS
Microraptor was a small, feathered dinosaur
The first flying dinosaurs took to the air in a similar way to a World War I bi-plane, a study shows.

A fresh analysis of an early feathered fossil dinosaur suggests that it dropped its hind legs below its body, adopting a bi-plane-like form.

This contrasts with earlier reconstructions showing the dinosaur maintaining its wings in a tandem pattern, a bit like a dragonfly.

Details appear in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal..."

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Comet Maker

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Dwarf planet 'becoming a comet': "An unusual dwarf planet discovered in the outer Solar System could be en route to becoming the brightest comet ever known.

2003 EL61 is a large, dense, rugby-ball-shaped hunk of rock with a fast rotation rate.

Professor Mike Brown has calculated that the object could be due a close encounter with the planet Neptune.

If so, Neptune's gravity could catapult it into the inner Solar System as a short-period comet.

'If you came back in two million years, EL61 could well be a comet,' said Professor Brown, from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena.

'When it becomes a comet, it will be the brightest we will ever see.'"

Saturday, January 13, 2007

New Eye In The Sky

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | First stars in telescope's sights: "he Hubble Space Telescope is a hard act to follow.

Since it was launched in 1990, the telescope has become one of the most important instruments in the history of astronomy, making critical discoveries that have vastly enriched our understanding of the cosmos.

John Mather is only too aware of this legacy. He is senior project scientist on Hubble's designated successor, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).

Dr Mather, 60, has been involved with JWST from the start and is busy directing construction of it at Nasa's Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland..."

Monday, January 08, 2007

Reverse Mars Attacks!

Scientist Says NASA Found Alien Life (and killed it)

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Two NASA space probes that visited Mars 30 years ago may have found alien microbes on the Red Planet and inadvertently killed them, a scientist is theorizing.

The Viking space probes of 1976-77 were looking for the wrong kind of life, so they didn't recognize it, a geology professor at Washington State University said.

Dirk Schulze-Makuch presented his theory in a paper delivered at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Seattle, Washington.

The paper was released Sunday...