Gokhan Yorgancigil

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The many inventions of photography

175 years after the public announcement of the invention of photography, Mirjam Brusius explores new archive evidence that tells a different story about the history of photographs.<p>Recently a BBC story claimed that the world first’s ‘selfie stick’ had appeared 90 years ago. For scientific and …

Researchers read and write brain activity with light

Neuroscientists at UCL have developed an ‘all-optical’ method for simultaneous recording and alteration of nervous impulses in the living brain.<p>A team of neuroscientists at University College London has developed a new way of simultaneously recording and manipulating the activity of multiple cells …

Faith and Wisdom in Science by Tom McLeish, review – rich and discursive

McLeish doesn’t buy the argument that religion is about turning untested belief into truth. Science, he points out, also makes claims that turn out to be false<p>The Royal Society has announced the shortlist for its annual science book prize. In the week preceding the announcement of the winner on 10 …

British Council & Pathé archives, now available online

'The catalogues present a hyperreal window on the past, blending often bizarre images with the kind of brash sales pitch beloved of the chirpy newsboys in Bugsy Malone'<p>Last month the British Council digitised its collection of 1940s public-information films, more than 100 of which are now available …

Tunguska explosion

We celebrate Asteroid Day on June 30 because it’s the anniversary of a 1908 explosion over Siberia that killed reindeer and flattened trees.<p><b>June 30,</b> …

APOD: NGC 4651: The Umbrella Galaxy (2014 Jul 02) Image Credit & Copyright: R. Jay Gabany (Blackbird Observatories) Collaboration: C. Foster (Australian Astronomical Obs.), H. Lux (U. Nottingham, Oxford), A. Romanowsky (San Jose State, UCO), D. Martínez-Delgado (Heidelberg), et al. http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140702.html Explanation: Spiral galaxy NGC 4651 is a mere 62 million light-years distant, toward the well-groomed northern constellation Coma Berenices. About the size of our Milky Way, this island universe is seen to have a faint umbrella-shaped structure that seems to extend (left) some 100 thousand light-years beyond the bright galactic disk. The giant cosmic umbrella is now known to be composed of tidal star streams - extensive trails of stars gravitationally stripped from a smaller satellite galaxy. The small galaxy was eventually torn apart in repeated encounters as it swept back and forth on eccentric orbits through NGC 4651. In fact, the picture insert zooms in on the smaller galaxy's remnant core, identified in an extensive exploration of the system, using data from the large Subaru and Keck telescopes on Mauna Kea. Work begun by a remarkable collaboration of amateur and professional astronomers to image faint structures around bright galaxies suggests that even in nearby galaxies, tidal star streams are common markers of such galactic mergers. The result is explained by models of galaxy formation that also apply to our own Milky Way. http://www.cosmotography.com/ http://www.aao.gov.au/ http://arxiv.org/abs/1406.5511 Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=140702 #APOD

APOD: Wolf-Rayet Star 124: Stellar Wind Machine (2014 Jul 01) Image Credit: Hubble Legacy Archive, NASA, ESA Processing & Licence: Judy Schmidt http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140701.html Explanation: Some stars explode in slow motion. Rare, massive Wolf-Rayet stars are so tumultuous and hot that they slowly disintegrating right before our telescopes. Glowing gas globs each typically over 30 times more massive than the Earth are being expelled by violent stellar winds. Wolf-Rayet star WR 124, visible near the above image center spanning six light years across, is thus creating the surrounding nebula known as M1-67. Details of why this star has been slowly blowing itself apart over the past 20,000 years remains a topic of research. WR 124 lies 15,000 light-years away towards the constellation of Sagitta. The fate of any given Wolf-Rayet star likely depends on how massive it is, but many are thought to end their lives with spectacular explosions such as supernovas or gamma-ray bursts. http://hla.stsci.edu/ http://www.nasa.gov/ http://www.esa.int/ http://geckzilla.com/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=140701 #APOD