Wednesday, February 26, 2014
What follows is an account of an instance where I, a person of relatively sound mind and body, could not believe the evidence before my own eyes. It might not have been a hallucination that I experienced, but it was surely a great jolt of consciousness. The scene: I’m in my closet-sized cabin, inside a white dome built to house a crew of six for four months as part of an isolation experiment. As a crew, we are working and living as ‘explorers’ stationed on the surface of ‘Mars’. Our colony is lifelike and NASA-funded, but it is situated in a place quite a bit closer to home, on a remote slope of a Hawai’ian volcano.
Thursday, February 20, 2014
Tuesday, February 18, 2014
The Indonesian volcano Kelud exploded with a powerful eruption on February 13, killing three people and prompting the evacuation of 100,000 people. The eruption sent a large plume of ash 10 miles (17 kilometers) high into the sky, drifting west across Java and over the Indian Ocean, causing the shutdown of several airports.
Bikini Atoll, a tiny ring of islands halfway between Hawaii and Australia, is a world-class diving destination and home to one of the Pacific's last great fishing grounds. So where are all the tourists? Welcome to heaven on earth, where the vestiges of hell lie just below the surface.
Capricious Mother Nature destroyed a building with a giant boulder in northern Italy, with an even bigger boulder missing a three-story farm house by a just few inches, stopping right at its main entrance.
The Thatcher effect or Thatcher illusion is a phenomenon where it becomes more difficult to detect local feature changes in an upside-down face, despite identical changes being obvious in an upright face. It is named after British former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher on whose photograph the effect has been most famously demonstrated. The effect was originally created by Psychology Professor Peter Thompson in 1980.
A lot of movie lovers unfairly dismiss the Documentary genre and associate it solely with war, politics and economics. While there are a ton of really excellent documentaries that address these topics, the genre is much wider than this. This is a list of documentaries currently streaming on Netflix Instant that I hope will spark an interest. This list isn't even close to being all-inclusive, but hopefully it'll introduce a nice sampling of films.
From monstrous grey beasts roaming the mountains to insane government plots to dens of xenophobic circus midgets, the world can be a strange place. Here are 10 mysteries that make us wonder if all is not as it seems
When it comes to elevators, function usually trumps form and the ride is utterly forgettable. Not so with these lifts—some look like they belong in sci-fi thrillers, others could be theme park attractions, but a trip on any one of them will earn you a lifetime of bragging rights.
Fresh details have emerged of castaway Jose Salvador Alvarenga's first encounter with other people after months at sea -- including how Marshall Islands residents communicated with him in broken Spanish learned from popular children's television show Dora the Explorer.
In the series No Seconds, photographer Henry Hargreaves recreates and records the last meals of Death Row inmates. He captures not only what they ate, but accompanies the photos with what was on the menu and the crimes they committed.
Sunday, February 02, 2014
Across a crackling radio transmission, the 'Miracle Man of the Pacific Ocean' told for the first time today how his incredible 16 months adrift in a small boat had left him 'desperate and exhausted.'
Speaking briefly to MailOnline through an interpreter as he was carried by boat from a tiny atoll to the main port in the isolated Marshall Islands, Jose Ivan told of his anxiety to be reunited with his family.
'I just want to get back home to Mexico, but I don't even know where I am,' he said, his voice filled with emotion.
When iconic “Mad Magazine” illustrator Jack Davis launched his career in the early 1950s, he made a name for himself drawing nightmarish images for EC Comics titles such as “Tales From the Crypt.” Horror fans today still marvel at his towering and intricately detailed fiends—corrupt men with shadowy, crevassed faces; feral werewolves with saliva dripping from their fangs; hordes of slimy skeletal corpses that seem to reach out at you; and, of course, all those dismembered body parts strewn about the pages.
Saturday, February 01, 2014
You're probably not going to instantly become as talented an artist as Marcello Barenghi by simply watching these wonderful time-lapses of his photo-realistic drawings. But it's still utterly captivating to see them come to life, and all the tiny details that make them look so real.
According to a recent article on Smithsonian.com, the notion that poison candy is routinely distributed to unsuspecting children on Halloween is a myth perpetrated by advice columnists Dear Abby and Ann Landers in the 1980s and ’90s. But historically, candy meant for young consumers has sported poisonous-sounding, WTF wrappers and packages that most self-respecting 2013 parents would be dismayed to see dumped out of their children’s trick-or-treat bags.
Boomboxes are, by definition, excessive. With their deafening bass thud and dazzling chrome dials, these electric beasts are heavy enough to tone your biceps. Also known as “ghetto blasters” or “jamboxes,” they rose to fame in the 1980s along with hip-hop, flourishing as a tool for sharing and mixing the latest beats. Yet despite their widespread popularity, the innovators who conceived of these devices are still largely unknown, consigned to anonymity by the corporations that manufactured their creations.
WELCOME to summer movie hell—another blockbuster season filled with costly digital effects that disappoint more often than they surprise. During a University of Southern California film symposium in June, two directors guilty of creating this trend, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, predicted the imminent collapse of their mega-budget film industry. In its place, they suggested a future of immersive technologies, where theaters would offer thrills you couldn’t get via Netflix.
DEEP beneath San Francisco’s Civic Center Plaza, in a windowless bunker called Brooks Hall, a 40-ton pipe organ gathers dust. Known variously as the Exposition Organ and Opus 500, the century-old instrument was a mechanical and musical wonder when it was unveiled in 1915, the seventh-largest organ in the world.
If you were committed to a psychiatric institution, unsure if you’d ever return to the life you knew before, what would you take with you? That sobering question hovers like an apparition over each of the Willard Asylum suitcases. From the 1910s through the 1960s, many patients at the Willard Asylum for the Chronic Insane left suitcases behind when they passed away, with nobody to claim them. Upon the center’s closure in 1995, employees found hundreds of these time capsules stored in a locked attic. Working with the New York State Museum, former Willard staffers were able to preserve the hidden cache of luggage as part of the museum’s permanent collection.