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Universe Has At Least 30 Billion Years Left
Topic: Science 3:20 pm EST, Feb 27, 2004

Phewww! That was a close one. I was only betting on 29 billion years.

The new findings support Einstein's cosmological constant, which modern cosmologists say implies that dark energy should not characteristically change over time. If that's right, the universe will continue to expand at an accelerating forever.

The new results suggest that even if Einstein and modern dark energy theory are both wrong, dark energy will not destroy the universe for at least 30 billion years, Riess and his colleagues say.

"Right now we're about twice as confident than before that Einstein's cosmological constant is real, or at least dark energy does not appear to be changing fast enough, if at all, to cause an end to the universe anytime soon," Riess said.

The universe is presently 13.7 billion years old.

Universe Has At Least 30 Billion Years Left

The Worlds of David Darling
Topic: Science 2:53 pm EST, Feb 27, 2004

Visit the 2000-page A-Z of astrobiology, astronomy, spaceflight, and related subjects:

this is where I usually go looking for science stories so if in future I recommend various stories then in all probability I didn't go trawling through web sites but found it here so for the sake of honesty I firstly recommend this

The Worlds of David Darling

Bush Backs Ban in Constitution on Gay Marriage
Topic: Society 1:43 pm EST, Feb 25, 2004

] "An amendment to the Constitution is never to be
] undertaken lightly," Mr. Bush said. "The amendment
] process has addressed many serious matters of national
] concern, and the preservation of marriage rises to this
] level of national importance."

I've been at a loss for what to say about this gay marriage issue. I don't feel its an issue that effects me. Is that selfish? I'm starting to think so. It definitely is if we are now talking about making amendments to The Constitution.

San Francisco, before and after allowing same-sex marriages, seems the same to me. There have been no riots. There has been no break down of order. No screaming in the streets. No masses of heathens roaming the streets raping small children. No breakdown of family values. No burning churches. Nothing that the fundamentalist right would have you believe is right around the corner following such a drastic change in policy.

I can tell you what I have seen. I live about 5 blocks away from City Hall, so I've had a pretty good view. I've seen nothing. Just a rise in activity in and out of the building, and slightly more news vans present then usual. Have I seen happy gay couples? Sure, I see those every single day. I'm also about 8 or 10 blocks away from the Castro. I've seen a few "we all deserve the right to marry" banners on cars, but parking has not been any harder to find. In general, its business as usual in San Francisco. If I wasn't paying attention to the news, I might not even know anything was going on or think strangely of it. No one around me seems to.

The rest of the country however, seems up in arms. Its almost hard for me to believe that there is serious talk about making an amendment to the Constitution over this. I'm not sure where to even begin trying to analyze or comment on such a bone headed maneuver.

I'm one of those people who was raised in an environment where "faggot" was general purpose playground insult. As years wore on, I was exposed to real gay people, had friends come out of the closet, etc. I came to detest the type of discrimination that gays endure. I have my own form of "white guilt" over the issue. In that respect, I am America. In the same way that America hated blacks, or women, or any other group that we have oppressed in our history. America changes its mind given evidence of wrong doing. America rises to right wrongs. America is about equality.

I think my views are pretty common. I'm "average" in many respects. I'm moderate in my politics. In general, whatever situation I'm in, I try to find "the opposition" and play it, if only for the thought exercise. That leads people to believe I'm a "radical", but any given group has a very different opinion about what I'm so "radical" about. Here though, I have a really strong opinion. I believe in freedom. I believe in liberty. I believe that people should be able to live the way they want to l... [ Read More (0.4k in body) ]

Bush Backs Ban in Constitution on Gay Marriage

Astronomy Picture of the Day
Topic: Science 4:50 pm EST, Feb 23, 2004

] Each day a different image or photograph of our
] fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief
] explanation written by a professional astronomer.

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Saving the Hubble!
Topic: Science 4:24 pm EST, Feb 23, 2004

] US residents only, sign the "Save the Hubble" petition at
] Planet Earth residents only, sign the "Save the Hubble"
] petition =here=
] You can check how the petition list is doing =here=

Saving the Hubble!

George W Bush or Emperor Palpatine?
Topic: Miscellaneous 3:26 pm EST, Feb 15, 2004


George W Bush or Emperor Palpatine?

RE: Blair Defends War Decision
Topic: Current Events 1:04 pm EST, Feb  6, 2004

] - The world's demand for the last many years, including in
] early 2003, was for Iraq to comply with U.N. demands to
] disarm.

I believe Israel is still holding land the UN told it to give up more than 25 years ago. I'm not saying Israel is wrong, I'm just saying this is a bullshit reason and you know it is.

] - Iraq was clearly not complying with those demands.


] - Something had to be done, and most countries didn't have
] the balls to do it.

Most countries respect the diplomatic process, and understand, unlike Mister Bush, that you can't have what you want right now

] - We did.

Violating 230 years of Policy, and severly, if not mortally hurting NATO in the process.

Taking power into your own hands, while effective, hurts you in the long run.

] - The war was justified.

Really? Because minus the immediate threat of WMD I see no reason for a preemptive invading of another country. I have discussed this in my memestream before. All reasons given are things we either do ourselves, or ignore when our allies do because it suits us best.

] - And the world is a better place without Saddam.

The fact that you, or even the entire human population feels "the world is a better place" because something occured is never proof that what occured was fair or just or right to do.

RE: Blair Defends War Decision

One-Third of Iranian Parliament Quits in Protest
Topic: Society 2:00 pm EST, Feb  2, 2004

More than one-third of Iran's Parliament resigned Sunday to protest a sweeping ban on candidates running in the parliamentary election later this month. The defiant move threatened to plunge Iran's political system into chaos.

"We cannot continue to be present in a Parliament that is not capable of defending the rights of the people and that is unable to prevent elections in which the people cannot choose their representatives."

The brother of Iran's reformist president was among those who resigned. He said, "This is the end of the reform movement."

One-Third of Iranian Parliament Quits in Protest

Restoring a Red Rover's Spirit
Topic: Science 3:14 pm EST, Jan 26, 2004

The computer on Spirit started crashing on Wednesday, and the problem has been traced to part of the computer memory, said Mr. Theisinger, the project manager. It will still take some time for the problem to be fully diagnosed and for the engineers to devise procedures to work around it.

"I think we're probably like three weeks away from driving," Mr. Theisinger said.

The troubles began Wednesday, as controllers were testing one of the instruments. Spirit's computer crashed, and over the next two days, a cycle of rebooting and crashing repeated more than 60 times. The rover also did not shut down at night.

Suspecting that the problem might be with the flash memory, flight controllers radioed instructions for Spirit to start up in what Mr. Theisinger called the cripple mode, using only the RAM and not the flash memory. For the first time since Wednesday, the rover's software did not crash.

This is the first clear explanation I've read of the problems with Spirit.

Restoring a Red Rover's Spirit

Solar Flares on Steroids
Topic: Science 3:09 pm EST, Jan 26, 2004

] Satellites registered a surge of x-rays and gamma-rays.
] Hams experienced another blackout. It seemed like another
] X-class solar flare. Except for one thing: this flare
] didn't come from the sun.
] It came from outer space.

Cool stuff... I spent 4 years getting a degree in physics and i never heard of a magnetar...

Solar Flares on Steroids

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