Home Sweet Home

November 9, 2010

Check out this wonderful Hobbit home built a few years ago for $5,000. It is sustainable and cozy!

According to Simon it took about 1500 hours to build over 4 months:

Sustainable design and construction:

  1. Dug into hillside for low visual impact and shelter
  2. Stone and mud from diggings used for retaining walls, foundations etc.
  3. Frame constructed of fallen trees from surrounding woodland
  4. Reciprocal roof rafters are structurally very easy to do
  5. Straw bales in floor, walls and roof for super-insulation and easy building
  6. Plastic sheet and mud/turf roof for low impact and ease
  7. Lime plaster on walls is breathable and low energy to manufacture compared to cement
  8. Reclaimed (scrap) wood for floors and fittings
  9. Other items were reclaimed from “a rubbish pile somewhere”: windows, wiring, plumbing

Notice the “goodnight, moon” in the sky.

Via: Julie Tara

Shooting Star

August 13, 2010

03 Shooting Star song by Joan Spear

It’s that time of year for the Perseids meteor shower which occurs when the earth passes through the  by debris from Comet Swift-Tuttle. Every 133 years the huge comet swings through the inner solar system and leaves behind a trail of dust and gravel. The debris, specks of comet-stuff hit the atmosphere at 140,000 mph and disintegrate in flashes of light. These meteors are called Perseids because they fly out of the constellation Perseus.  Late night watching is best, don’t try to focus, just let your eyes be relaxed and take in the western sky!


Picture 1

Just saw the new scifi flick, Moon. This 97 minute film was released in June and is becoming popular by word-of-mouth and good reviews. A mining operation on the moon is run by one employee, alone on a 3-year stint. Completely cut off from live communication due to some glitch, he is reliant on messsages relayed by his computer, GERTY. The years are wearing on him; it almost time to leave and he is starting to hallucinate and feel sick. What happens is very thought-provoking and the story is powerful and reminiscent of a good Asimov  tale or a short story by Heinlein. The story was written by Duncan Jones, son of David Bowie, and he also directs the film. The sole character is played by Sam Rockwell in the role written for him by Jones and Nathan Parker. We also hear the voice of Kevin Spacey as the computer- shades of Hal. Sure, the premise is a bit unbelievable, I mean, who would give up family and love to be alone on the moon for three years. But ignoring that, it is interesting and the music is well done. I would really love to write about the themes but it would give away too much of the plot. It is more drama and mystery than thriller, I don’t do thrillers very well. It is most definitely scifi. Here’s a clip.

Far Side of the Moon

June 22, 2009


June 23, 2009 at about 5:20 am PDT, you will be able to watch live-streaming of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter pictures at 1 frame/sec as it swings into orbit around the Moon, from an altitude only 9000 km above the Moon. The side towards the Sun — the far side — will be lit, so you’ll get a chance to see the far side close up.

The Mission Objectives of the Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) include confirming the presence or absence of water ice in a permanently shadowed crater at the Moon’s South Pole. The identification of water is very important to the future of human activities on the Moon. LCROSS will excavate the permanently dark floor of one of the Moon’s polar craters with two heavy impactors in 2009 to test the theory that ancient ice lies buried there. The impact will eject material from the crater’s surface to create a plume that specialized instruments will be able to analyze for the presence of water (ice and vapor), hydrocarbons and hydrated materials.

Via Steve Cooperman aka Skyman