Things and stuff

By Phil Plait | December 13, 2008 8:21 am

I’m off to Phoenix for about 36 hours to do an interview for an upcoming TV program I can’t tell you anything about. Since I’ll be gone, here is some stuff to keep you from doing anything useful.

1) Dave Mosher at Discovery’s blog (note the y) is hosting the 82nd Carnival of Space, and it’s a special first-time video edition!

2) New Scientist has pictures of the LHC damage. They’re… interesting, but I was hoping for more drama.

3) Universe Today has an even cooler Mars 3D anaglyph than the one I recently posted. And I forgot to mention that HiRISE is on Twitter! Also, the parent spacecraft, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, just finished its nominal two-year mission. Congrats! May it get extended for ten more.

4) Check out this way cool scale solar system model in Maine! BABLoggee Vernon Balbert sent that one in.

5) Anti-anti-vax heroes Paul Offitt and Amanda Peet were on NPR. Yay!

6) That planet 63 light years away with carbon dioxide in its atmosphere? Water vapor has been found as well. We’ve seen water vapor in the atmospheres of very cool stars, too, which I think is amazing.

Comments (17)

  1. ddr

    Hey! If your going to be here in Phoenix, are you planning to do any book signings or anything?

  2. “We’ve seen water vapor in the atmospheres of very cool stars”

    Stars as cool as this?

  3. undercover

    “…to keep you from doing anything useful.”

    What are you?

  4. undercover

    I understand that you americans planned to build and even bigger collider, the S.S.C. but it got cancelled 15 years ago because the cost had reached around 12 billion dollars and that’s not much considering that you spend around 12 billion in Iraq, EVERY MONTH!

  5. KC

    >I’m off to Phoenix for about 36 hours to do an interview for an upcoming TV program I can’t >tell you anything about.

    Ya big tease! :-)

  6. Ray

    I expected more damage to the LHC. If that’s the best that a black hole can do then light that sucker back up! ;)

  7. Off to do a TV show you can’t tell us about??? Hmmmm…

    OK… well, I’m off to do something I can’t tell you about!

    How do ya like them apples! 2 can play this game! :)

  8. Elmar_M

    LOL, when I read through the comments on the NPR page on the antivaxer article, I think I know what my next investment is going to be:
    Cute little baby coffins!
    They will be high in demand very soon, it seems ;)
    I dont even feel like quoting some of the things people are saying there…

  9. Re the solar system model: I just want to point out that if they wanted to include the nearest star, Proxima Centauri, in their model, they’d have to put it on the other side of the moon!

    I think it’s really cool that they set that up. All of the solar system models have different scales for distance and planet size (for very good reason). This model gives you a much better idea of what the Solar System is really like!

  10. Stu

    The 82nd was fantastic, yep, but we’re actually on to the 83rd Carnival of Space now, Phil…

    http://astroblogger.blogspot.com/2008/12/carnival-of-space-83-antipodean-edition.html

  11. Sir Struggle

    Yeah, I saw that solar system model on a TV show a few years ago (either Discovery channel or NGC) and I’m still amazed by the size of the sun. You can see giant 9 digit number all your life and not get a feel for the distance or size of something until you see it to scale like that.

  12. Gavin Flower

    see:

    http://moderator.change.gov/?embed=http://change.gov/openforquestions#11/e=8&t=aghhc2tvYmFtYXIQCxIIRG9yeVVzZXIY69QBDA

    look at the question:
    “How will you prevent future ‘whitehouse-washing’ of scientific findings that changes or distorts scientific reports; as was done by the Bush WH. Clearly no government should have the ability to subvert science again like this – ever.”

    When I looked, there were 8 votes for and 1 against.

    I’m surprised there were not more votes!

  13. Too bad I didn’t know sooner. I’d buy ya dinner.

  14. Troy

    I’ve never been to the Maine solar system model. After seeing about the previous record holder, the model in Peoria Illinois on Discovery channel I did take a vacation to for the interplanetary bike ride there. One thing I’d point out is the painting on the Peoria solar system is much better (a local artist did them) and you can see the planets at eye level (and thus be photographed with them). Anyway here’s the link.

    http://www.bradley.edu/las/phy/astronomy/solar_system.html?

  15. Jim Reynolds

    No, no, Phil, we don’t want drama! Drama is astounding and horifying; and very expensive and difficult to repair! We want the LHC back on-line soonest. Where else will we find a plentiful source of strangelets?

  16. Chris

    That solar system model is awesome. I’ve only been to one scale model (the one here at CU, which is much smaller, and fits in the campus).

  17. dude

    Enjoy your brief stay in the PHX.

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