Archive for the ‘outer space’ Category

Sigma brand sewage sludge

June 20th 2012

sewage sludge

The pages of the Sigma catalog are replete with thousands of high-quality chemical reagents. But today I stumbled upon something I hadn’t seen before: “Sewage Sludge (Mixed Origin)“. This material is not only exorbitantly expensive ($619.20 for 40g) but also backordered! Perhaps there is an unmet demand for pristine sewage sludge. Your guess is as good as mine.

Posted by dylan under outer space | 3 Comments »

i went to a lecture and all i got was this stupid watch

February 29th 2008

autographed craig venter karyotype thumb

The Long Now Foundation hosted a seminar by Craig Venter, so of course I had to go. My impression of the man was some combination of Peter Schultz and Al Gore (that is, An Inconvenient Truth Al Gore). Beyond that I won’t even try to summarize. Here is host Steward Brand’s attempt. Hopefully the seminar audio and video will be available soon, here.

now watch thumb

What I can say is that 1) during the post-presentation book signing Dr. Venter was kind enough to autograph a printout of his own karyotype that I brought. This came from his recent PLoS publication (open access, thanks internet! You can also download a gigantic pdf of the sequence, for $0.00).

And 2) I was inspired to the point where I felt compelled to throw money at the Long Now Foundation by purchasing this very attractive watch (timepiece? bracelet?). It is the most accurate watch in the world and worth every penny. I am still trying to think of witty things to say when people ask me what time it is – suggestions welcome.

Posted by dylan under humans & machines & outer space | 4 Comments »

comet holmes is full of deceit and lies

November 22nd 2007

comet holmes thumbnail

Normally I’m not one to get angry at celestial objects, but I’ve got some words to say about this so-called “freak comet” currently sailing above our heads. If you haven’t read the news, there’s this Comet Holmes thing, which is usually a mediocre ball of ice that’s invisible to the naked eye. For reasons unknown, a few weeks ago it got a million times brighter within the span of a few hours. Sounds pretty awesome, right? I’ve been pointing my head up every night for the past 2 weeks, expecting to see a blazing fireball, like this and this.

A big waste of time. This “comet” is hardly worthy of its namesake. Maybe it’s just because I don’t have a giant telescope, but to my naked eyeballs Comet Holmes looks pretty much like any other point of light in the sky. Perhaps ever so slightly more blurry than a star, but that’s about it. I would like to write an angry letter, but I’m not sure who to address it to.

Posted by dylan under outer space | 3 Comments »