TwitterFacebook

Incredible Video From NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory: A 5-Year Time-Lapse of the Sun

Science • Views: 26,281

YouTube

I’ve been getting swarmed by creationists and right wing science-deniers today on Twitter, so here’s some amazing science to take away that nasty reactionary taste.

The Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) celebrates its 5th anniversary since it launched on February 11, 2010. This time-lapse video captures one frame every 8 hours starting when data became available in June 2010 and finishing February 8, 2015.

The different colors represent the various wavelengths (sometimes blended, sometimes alone) in which SDO observes the sun.

For more about SDO, please visit:
nasa.gov

Credit:
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

Download HD Video:
svs.gsfc.nasa.gov

It’s Darwin Day in the US, Where Far Too Many Fanatics Still Reject Evolution

Anti-science fanaticism persists, 100 years later
Science • Views: 24,503

I was going to start this post by wishing everyone a Happy Darwin Day (it’s Charles Darwin’s birthday), but unfortunately it’s not a very happy occasion — because this country still has far too many religious fanatics who refuse to accept the fact of evolution through natural selection: On Darwin Day, 5 Facts About the Evolution Debate.

Of all the major religious groups in the U.S., white evangelical Protestants are the most likely to reject evolution. A solid majority (64%) of white evangelicals in a 2013 poll said that humans and other living things have always existed in their present form, while only 27% said that humans evolved. These views are largely mirrored by the positions of large evangelical churches, such as the Southern Baptist Convention and the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, which explicitly reject evolutionary theory as being in conflict with what they see as biblical truth.

Some people will try to tell you this is just a private belief and doesn’t matter; but these people are not only indoctrinating their children with this Dark Ages anti-science rejectionism, they’re continually trying to force their views on everyone else’s children by sneaking creationism into public schools. And since this strategy has been consistently foiled by the courts, they’re now using a new technique to get at the children of America: taxpayer-funded religious schools that teach young Earth creationism and reject evolution entirely.

In an age when science and technology are vitally important skills, another entire generation of kids is having their critical thinking abilities deliberately sabotaged by fanatics.

This matters.

Also see

Richard Muller: I Was Wrong on Climate Change

Yale Climate Forum - Peter Sinclair
Science • Views: 26,859

I’m thinking back to all the climate trolls who used to throw this guy in my face when arguing with them…

YouTube

Richard Muller founded the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Project after declaring himself skeptical about climate change. He was funded in part by the Koch Brothers.
He found out what other scientists have known for decades. The Earth is warming, and we’re doing it.

Related

Mind-Bending 4K Video of the Andromeda Galaxy: The Largest Photo Ever Taken

Makes you feel small, don’t it?
Science • Views: 23,114

YouTube

You’ll leave this video with a sense of how unimaginably vast the universe is. This isn’t CGI, and it isn’t animation, it’s the largest photograph of the universe ever taken by the Hubble Space Telescope — and it’s just a small portion of the Andromeda Galaxy, our nearest galactic neighbor.

Watch and be amazed. (1440p and 2160p versions are included.)

First & Last photo by Cory Poole: facebook.com

Super-high resolution image of Andromeda from Hubble (NASA/ESA): spacetelescope.org

Music is ‘Koda - The Last Stand’: soundcloud.com

Space is crazy.

Neil deGrasse Tyson Will Host New Science-Oriented Late Night Talk Show

More of this, please
Science • Views: 24,080

What a great idea — a late night talk/variety show dedicated to science, hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson. I’ll be eagerly looking forward to this one.

“Cosmos allowed us to share the awesome power of the universe with a global audience in ways that we never thought possible,” said Tyson. “To be able to continue to spread wonder and excitement through Star Talk, which is a true passion project for me, is beyond exciting. And National Geographic Channel is the perfect home as we continue to explore the universe.”

“This is kind of low-risk, I think, for National Geographic,” Tyson told the crowd at the Television Critics Association press tour. “Star Talk exists as a thriving podcast right now.”

Star Talk will indeed follow a similar format to Tyson’s podcast, which marries science and popular culture and feature interviews with celebrities, comedians and scientists. He’s still sorting through all of the elements that he’ll add to the television iteration, but he does intend to give Bill Nye a platform for a minute-long rant in each show, much as Andy Rooney had for many years on CBS’ 60 Minutes.

A Timelapse of the Surface of the Sun in Stunning 4K Video

Hot solar action
Science • Views: 31,849

YouTube

One of the most amazing videos I’ve seen this year is this absolutely stunning timelapse of the wildest frontier, the surface of our Sun, composed of images taken by the Solar Dynamics Observatory. What you’re looking at is actually a gigantic self-sustaining nuclear fusion reaction. The center of our solar system is not a very peaceful place.

If you’re lucky enough to have a large Retina or other high resolution display, check out the 4K version in full screen mode — the detail is mind-blowing.

(h/t: Randall Gross.)

The surface of the sun from October 14th to 30th, 2014, showing sunspot AR 2192, the largest sunspot of the last two solar cycles (22 years). During this time sunspot AR 2191 produced six X-class and four M-class solar flares. The animation shows the sun in the ultraviolet 304 ångström wavelength, and plays at a rate of 52.5 minutes per second. It is composed of more than 17,000 images, 72 GB of data produced by the solar dynamics observatory (sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov) + (helioviewer.org). This animation has been rendered in 4K, and resized to the Youtube maximum resolution of 3840×2160. The animation has been rotated 180 degrees so that south is “up”. The audio is the ‘heartbeat’ of the sun, processed from SOHO HMI data by Alexander G. Kosovichev. Image data courtesy of NASA/SDO and the AIA, EVE, and HMI science teams.”Image processing and animation by James Tyrwhitt-Drake. To use this video in a commercial player or in broadcasts, please email licensing@storyful.com

In Which My Tweet About #Ebola and Evolution Goes Viral

Creationists get upset
Science • Views: 42,426
Image via Shutterstock

I’m going to kick off the week by humble-bragging about this off-handed tweet I posted over the weekend that has now gone viral (ironic considering the subject), with more than 7200 retweets as I write this.

This really touched a nerve, I guess, and I’ve now received hundreds of replies (possibly over a thousand, I haven’t counted), many of them from creationists.

One common theme in replies from conservatives is that “not all conservatives” are creationists or deny the science of evolution — but while it may be true that not every single conservative is a creationist, for years every poll on the subject has shown that a majority of Republicans not only disbelieve evolution, they’re hard core young Earth creationists.

(And by the way, my tweet didn’t even say that “all conservatives” are creationists, but it sure upset the ones who are.)

Two other common responses from creationists:

  1. We don't deny micro-evolution, just macro-evolution. If Ebola evolves, it's only micro-evolution.
  2. If Ebola ever becomes airborne, that won't be evolution -- it will be mutation. That's different.

Both of these talking points are well-worn creationist dodges, and they’re both bogus.

1. While biologists do use the terms “micro-evolution” and “macro-evolution,” they both refer to the same well-understood mechanism of evolution; the only difference is the scale, both in time and in size. Micro-evolution can take place much more quickly, because microorganisms breed much faster and have much shorter life spans.

2. The “mutation isn’t evolution” talking point is another nonsensical dodge, because biologists know that mutations are one of the most important mechanisms through which evolution occurs. If Ebola does ever become airborne (a very remote possibility, according to those who’ve studied the disease), it will most likely be due to a mutation that enables the virus to adapt better to its environment — leading to a general trend of evolution within the virus population, by means of natural selection.

I’ve answered these talking points just for reference, because unfortunately the people who spout them are impervious to logic, and simply don’t care about the truth of these issues. They’re rejecting the science of evolution because of an atavistic fear that it renders their cherished belief systems irrelevant, not out of logic — so they’ll never be convinced by logical arguments.

Also for reference, I highly recommend TalkOrigin’s Index to Creationist Claims, an exhaustive list of the many deceptive, false, and/or misleading talking points creationists use in these kinds of arguments (no matter how many times they’ve been debunked).

A Not-So-Simple Question: Why Do We Laugh?

Robert Provine, Doctor of Laughology
Science • Views: 23,853

Vimeo

Laughter is universal, but we know very little about the reasons we do it. Dr. Robert Provine has been studying the social and neurological roots of laughter for 20 years, and has come to surprising conclusions about how we operate as human beings.

For more on the health benefits of laughter, visit: theatlantic.com

To learn more about Dr. Provine’s research, read his latest book, Curious Behavior: bit.ly

Finally: a Truly Fair Representative Climate Change Debate From John Oliver

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver (HBO)
Science • Views: 21,633

YouTube

John Oliver beautifully illustrates the disparity between climate change “skeptics” and the scientific community, with help from a special guest.

Stunning New NASA Image: Uranus Seen From Saturn

Saturn’s neighbor seen from Cassini for the first time
Science • Views: 16,723
Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute (click to enlarge)

This view from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft features a blue planet, but unlike the view from July 19, 2013 (PIA17172) that featured our home planet, this blue orb is Uranus, imaged by Cassini for the first time.

Uranus is a pale blue in this natural color image because its visible atmosphere contains methane gas and few aerosols or clouds. Methane on Uranus — and its sapphire-colored sibling, Neptune — absorbs red wavelengths of incoming sunlight, but allows blue wavelengths to escape back into space, resulting in the predominantly bluish color seen here. Cassini imaging scientists combined red, green and blue spectral filter images to create a final image that represents what human eyes might see from the vantage point of the spacecraft.

Uranus has been brightened by a factor of 4.5 to make it more easily visible. The outer portion of Saturn’s A ring, seen at bottom right, has been brightened by a factor of two. The bright ring cutting across the image center is Saturn’s narrow F ring.

Uranus was approximately 28.6 astronomical units from Cassini and Saturn when this view was obtained. An astronomical unit is the average distance from Earth to the sun, equal to 93,000,000 miles (150,000,000 kilometers).

^ back to top ^

TwitterFacebook

Turn off all ads for a full year by subscribing!
Take advantage of our yearly subscription, and save 50% off the normal subscription price! One-year ad-free subscriptions are just $59.95. Turn off all ads for a full year by subscribing now and save!
Read more...

► LGF Headlines

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Articles

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Pages

  • Loading...

► Top 10 Comments

  • Loading...

► Bottom Comments

  • Loading...

► Recent Comments

  • Loading...

► Tools/Info

► Tag Cloud

► Contact

You must have Javascript enabled to use the contact form.
Your email:

Subject:

Message:


Messages may be published unless you request otherwise.
Tech Note:
Using the Contact Form
LGF Pages

This button leads to the main index of LGF Pages, our user-submitted articles. You can post your own LGF Pages simply by registering a free account with us.

Create a Page

This is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.

Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.

Last updated: 2015-02-13 1:58 pm PST

LGF User's Guide
Recent Pages
Thanos
The Stars My Destination May Land at Paramount
This could be great, or could become an abomination. This film needs the right director. EXCLUSIVE: Paramount Pictures is talks to acquire the feature film rights for the classic sci-fi novel The Stars My Destination for producer Mary Parent. Written ...

8 hours, 46 minutes ago
Views: 146 • Comments: 2
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 3
ಠ_ಠ
Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras doing a Reddit AMA
Earlier today interested Redditors posed questions to Poitras and Greenwald in Los Angeles, while Snowden posted from Moscow. A rare opportunity for average people to directly communicate with the (in)famous leaker.See the entire discussion HERE Redditor masondog13 asks: What's the ...

4 days, 22 hours ago
Views: 538 • Comments: 2
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 3
Rocky-in-Connecticut
Muslims Join Hands At Oslo’s Largest Synagogue
Wait a minute... watching Fox News and the Republican talking heads I learned that all Muslims are bad bad bad and in no way can Islam be interpreted as any sort of peaceful religion. news.yahoo.com OSLO (Reuters) - More than ...

1 week ago
Views: 792 • Comments: 2
Tweets: 7 • Rating: 5
BadExampleMan
Help Tel Aviv Roller Derby move forward!
For the last three years it's been my privilege to help coach a dedicated group of young women who have founded the first Women's Flat-Track Roller Derby league in Israel. They've learned, trained, fought, and worked unbelievably hard to bring ...

1 week, 1 day ago
Views: 636 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
FemNaziBitch
link-#Domestic Violence, Mass Shootings, and Violent Crime
A recent study found that more than half of the 110 mass shootings in the United States between January 2009 and July 2014 included the murder of a current or former spouse, an intimate partner or a family member. ...

1 week, 2 days ago
Views: 755 • Comments: 2
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 3
Great White Snark
Federal Judge Rules Ban on Interstate Handgun Sales Unconstitutional
Added bold is all mine. this was an awkward way to go about gun control anyway. It clearly impacts the law abiding far more than felons, and is by that definition inefficient and intrusive at best. Gonna have to do ...

2 weeks, 3 days ago
Views: 1,343 • Comments: 3
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 3
Lumberhead
No Escape From History
It has been enlightening to watch this entire spectacle play out over the past week. It has indeed. Remarkably, comments that acknowledge verifiable history are treated as controversial. Meanwhile the complete denial of this history, both recent and long ...

2 weeks, 3 days ago
Views: 1,250 • Comments: 1
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 5
 Frank says:

Flatulence can be cruel!