Heads up, folks! Some scientists are going to do some sciencey stuff tonight which will lead to weirdly colorful clouds. If you see something like that in the sky, it is not:
- A U.F.O.
- The Rapture (finally)
- Buddha descending on a unicorn
- Kanye West’s monstrous ego coming to devour us all
Thank you in advance for not flipping out like these other people, mmmkay…
Citizens of Earth, Do Not Panic If Brilliant, Glowing Clouds Fill the Sky Tonight
You know your crazy relative who’s always suspicious of black SUVs? Quick—block him on Facebook. NASA is scheduled to launch a suborbital rocket from Wallops Island, Virginia, on Wednesday night, and as one of its experiments, it will eject colorful clouds of vapor more than a hundred miles above the ground in order to study ions and neutral particles in the upper atmosphere.
Oh for fuck’s sake. Honestly, people, you need to get a grip on reality here. Sorry, but this stuff just drives me bonkers… Just because the clouds do something you’ve never seen before doesn’t mean it’s a sign from God or that the “end times” are near. Even if it was a sign, what is it trying to say? “Hey look, I’m a big round rainbowy cloud”? You’d think if God wanted to give us a sign, it would be something that left nothing to interpretation. (And please don’t say your faith tells you this is a holy event, because we both know that’s quite a stretch.)
Costa Rica Cloud Formation: Scientists Explain Cloud Formation As Christians Celebrate Sign From God
One woman who posted a photo of the mystery said it looked “like the end of times.” She said the “skies opened up as if it were the end of times — It was truly a beautiful glimpse of what our God has in store for us on the day he comes back.” Another Escazu resident, Jessie Montealegre, said she was also was amazed by the sky phenomenon. “It was breathtaking,” she said. “It’s like a sign of God.”
But wait! This looks very familiar… I think I’ve seen God’s handiwork like this before!
Anyway, leave it to the killjoy scientists to burst this heavenly bubble and ruin everything with their science and reason and stuff:
However, experts said the cloud has a less divine explanation — a rare phenomenon known as “cloud iridescence.” Eladio Solano, a meteorologist with Costa Rica’s National Meteorological Institute, said the colorful effect is caused by the sun’s light being refracted by water droplets and ice crystals in the cloud.
OK, all snarkiness aside…I get that religious people take comfort in things they believe to be signs from heaven. It probably feels really good to think you’ve made contact with something “out there.” But when you start seeing an all-powerful Supreme Being in mundane things like clouds, toast, or even brain scans, maybe that is the sign you should pay attention to — it’s telling you that you’re taking this stuff a wee bit too far.
Imagine buying a roll of solar cells and slapping it on a wall or window to collect energy. What a fantastic invention this could turn out to be, if it works as well as they’re hoping! We’ll probably have to wait a few years before they’re sold commercially, but the possibilities are pretty enticing. On a somewhat-related note, in a couple of months Australia will be the first country to get the new Tesla Powerwall, which also looks pretty amazing. Yay for science and stuff!
Mass-produced, printable solar cells enter market and could change everything
Australian solar power experts making up the Victorian Organic Solar Cell Consortium have developed and begun to market solar cells that are created with a 3D printer. The group, consisting of scientists from the CSIRO, the University of Melbourne and Monash University have been working on the technology for over seven years and have figured out a way to cheaply print the panels onto plastic, including smart-phones and laptops, enabling self charging electronics. They are also able to print directly on to walls and windows using an opaque solar film and claim that they can line a skyscraper with panels, making it totally electrically self sufficient.
This is quite hilarious. So you have your religious panties in a knot because a show based on science doesn’t feature unprovable, untestable, philosophical, non-science topics? This is why you go out and make your own show which proves the universe was created by the magical invisible sky god. I’m dying to see some of your evidence and experiments. Oh wait, there are already thousands of such shows and movies available. None of them has any evidence, but it’s still a good effort.
Creationists Demand Airtime On Neil deGrasse Tyson’s ‘Cosmos’
Appearing on “The Janet Mefferd Show” on Thursday, Danny Faulkner of Answers In Genesis voiced his complaints about “Cosmos” and how the 13-episode series has described scientific theories, such as evolution, but has failed to shed light on dissenting creationist viewpoints. He said:
“I was struck in the first episode where [Tyson] talked about science and how, you know, all ideas are discussed, you know, everything is up for discussion –- it’s all on the table — and I thought to myself, ‘No, consideration of special creation is definitely not open for discussion, it would seem.'”
Ask for Evidence: demanding facts for sciencey claims
Victoria from the UK’s Sense About Science writes in with news about its Ask For Evidence campaign, a structured system for demanding evidence of sciencey-sounding claims from governments and companies, such as claims that wheatgrass drinks accomplish something called “detox” (whatever that is). The campaign has been remarkably successful to date, and they’re looking for people to carry the work on in their own lives.
Here’s something I fully support: demanding evidence from companies who glowing claims about their “healthy” products. I’d like to see something about coconut water, since it’s the latest “better than water” fad…
A recent study shows that conservatives have increasingly lost faith in science since the 70’s. Ha! No shit, right? But how can you “lose faith” in science when it doesn’t even require faith in order to see it in action? Science simply is, whether you believe in it or not, and it evolves along with our understanding of how the universe works.
And that’s the beauty of science. We’re all trying to make sense of ourselves and this world we’re in — some choose to believe in myths and mystical tales of invisible beings who created the world and control everything in it, and others would rather find answers through testing and experimentation, facts and evidence.
If it weren’t for science, we’d all think the world rides through space on the back of a giant turtle or something. I’m not kidding — these science deniers would trap our civilization’s intellectual progress in the stone age if they could get away with it. Fucking morons.
Believe in whatever otherworldly beings you want, but don’t deny testable, verifiable evidence when it’s presented to you. I’m not just talking about global warming — I mean anything that may threaten your mystical “explanations” of how things work.
A study released Thursday in the American Sociological Review concludes that trust in science among conservatives and frequent churchgoers has declined precipitously since 1974, when a national survey first asked people how much confidence they had in the scientific community. At that time, conservatives had the highest level of trust in scientists.
Confidence in scientists has declined the most among the most educated conservatives, the peer-reviewed research paper found, concluding: “These results are quite profound because they imply that conservative discontent with science was not attributable to the uneducated but to rising distrust among educated conservatives.”
All across America, right-wing hatebags are having a collective conniption — a rather stupid conniption, at that!
There’s no gentle way to put it: People who give in to racism and prejudice may simply be dumb, according to a new study that is bound to stir public controversy.
The research finds that children with low intelligence are more likely to hold prejudiced attitudes as adults. These findings point to a vicious cycle, according to lead researcher Gordon Hodson, a psychologist at Brock University in Ontario. Low-intelligence adults tend to gravitate toward socially conservative ideologies, the study found. Those ideologies, in turn, stress hierarchy and resistance to change, attitudes that can contribute to prejudice, Hodson wrote in an email to LiveScience.
“Prejudice is extremely complex and multifaceted, making it critical that any factors contributing to bias are uncovered and understood,” he said.
The findings combine three hot-button topics.”They’ve pulled off the trifecta of controversial topics,” said Brian Nosek, a social and cognitive psychologist at the University of Virginia who was not involved in the study. “When one selects intelligence, political ideology and racism and looks at any of the relationships between those three variables, it’s bound to upset somebody.”
via Yahoo! News
This is fascinating: science finally begins to unravel Bible stories among believers. I mean, the idea of all of humanity spawning from two people (one of whom magically created from the other’s rib) is simply preposterous, but people actually believe this stuff as if it’s 100% fact! But now some cracks are beginning to show as Christian scholars are beginning to admit that yes, maybe some of what we believe is utter bullshit.
Venema says there is no way we can be traced back to a single couple. He says with the mapping of the human genome, its clear that modern humans emerged from other primates as a large population — long before the Genesis time frame of a few thousand years ago. And given the genetic variation of people today, he says scientists cant get that population size below 10,000 people at any time in our evolutionary history.
To get down to just two ancestors, Venema says, “You would have to postulate that theres been this absolutely astronomical mutation rate that has produced all these new variants in an incredibly short period of time. Those types of mutation rates are just not possible. It would mutate us out of existence.”
Venema is a senior fellow at BioLogos Foundation, a Christian group that tries to reconcile faith and science. The group was founded by Francis Collins, an evangelical and the current head of the National Institutes of Health, who, because of his position, declined an interview.
And Venema is part of a growing cadre of Christian scholars who say they want their faith to come into the 21st century. Another one is John Schneider, who taught theology at Calvin College in Michigan until recently. He says its time to face facts: There was no historical Adam and Eve, no serpent, no apple, no fall that toppled man from a state of innocence.
Awe-inspiring glimpse into the makings of the universe. When you think in “geologic time”, the human race really is a flash in the pan, isn’t it?
When I first saw these never-before-seen time-lapse videos—captured over the course of 14 years by the Hubble Space Telescope—I just couldnt believe my eyes. Hubble photos can be beautiful, but these videos just left me speechless.
The videos show stellar jets firing at 440,000 miles 770,000 kilometers an hour. Stellar jets are a product of the creation of stars, something that happened to our very own Sun about 4.5 billion years ago.
I guess it’s asking just a tad too much to ask the Church to accept proven science. No, they’re busy retreating back to the Dark Ages, and with supposedly sciency info to back it up: they’re now saying the universe revolves around the Earth. What the what?? Here, read the conference pamphlet (.pdf) for yourself. They’re deadly serious!
Oh well. I suppose if you’re going to oppress women, condemn gays, give sanctuary to pedophile priests, and keep your believers living in a state of fear and perpetual self-loathing, you may as well be consistent and deny all that science has taught us. It just fits the pattern, you know?
Coming up next: the Earth is flat, the sky is purple, and gravity is only a theory! (Oh yeah, and the Lascaux Paintings were only done last week.)
Galileo Was Wrong is a detailed and comprehensive treatment of the scientific evidence supporting Geocentrism, the academic belief that the Earth is immobile in the center of the universe. Garnering scientific information from physics, astrophysics, astronomy and other sciences, Galileo Was Wrong shows that the debate between Galileo and the Catholic Church was much more than a difference of opinion about the interpretation of Scripture.
Scientific evidence available to us within the last 100 years that was not available during Galileo’s confrontation shows that the Church’s position on the immobility of the Earth is not only scientifically supportable, but it is the most stable model of the universe and the one which best answers all the evidence we see in the cosmos.
via Galileo Was Wrong