Rahul Kaushik

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Comedy Central Chooses Justin Bieber As Next Roast Victim

Comedy Central will roast the music industry's notorious troublemaker, Justin Bieber.<p><b>The news originally surfaced via Ryan Seacreast on Twitter:</b><p><b>Bieber replied with enthusiasm:</b><p>Bieber has been the subject of mockery before. This weekend, Kate McKinnon parodied Bieber's Calvin Klein ad on "Saturday …

How Long Would It Take For Humans To Get To The Closest Star From Our Sun?

And that's why NASA has no plans at present to send a spacecraft to any of the 1,876 known planets (as of January 9, 2015) beyond our solar system.<p>Alpha Centauri is the nearest star system to our sun at 4.3 light-years away. Can't we even go that far?<p>The answer is … not easily.<p>A distance of 4.3 …

Space Travel

Price of Electricity Hit Record High in U.S. in 2014

(CNSNews.com) - Even as gasoline prices plummeted and the overall energy price index calculated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics declined, …

Take a photo me, photographer!

APOD: A Fox Fur, a Unicorn, and a Christmas Tree (2015 Jan 05) Image Credit & Copyright: R. Colombari & F. Antonucci; Data: Subaru, ESO, & Francesco Antonucci http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap150105.html Explanation: What do the following things have in common: a cone, the fur of a fox, and a Christmas tree? Answer: they all occur in the constellation of the unicorn (Monoceros). Pictured as a star forming region and cataloged as NGC 2264, the complex jumble of cosmic gas and dust is about 2,700 light-years distant and mixes reddish emission nebulae excited by energetic light from newborn stars with dark interstellar dust clouds. Where the otherwise obscuring dust clouds lie close to the hot, young stars they also reflect starlight, forming blue reflection nebulae. The image spans about the diameter of a full moon, covering about 30 light-years at the distance of NGC 2264. Its cast of cosmic characters includes the Fox Fur Nebula, whose convoluted pelt lies on the lower right, bright variable star S Mon visible just above the Fox Fur, and the Cone Nebula on the image left. Given their distribution, the stars of NGC 2264 are also known as the Christmas Tree star cluster. The triangular tree shape traced by the stars appears here with its apex at the Cone Nebula on the left with its broader base near S Mon on the right. Annotated: http://cdn.astrobin.com/images/solutions/3ac4443d-102a-46f9-89db-b81c705b9912.jpg http://www.astrobin.com/users/rob77/ http://www.astrobin.com/users/FrankAntonucci/ http://subarutelescope.org/ http://www.eso.org/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=150105 #APOD

Apple Sued Over Storage-Devouring iOS 8

Apple is facing a class action lawsuit over the storage on its iPhones, iPads and iPods.<p>A class action lawsuit was filed Tuesday in California, alleging that Apple "fails to disclose" to people that as much as 23.1 percent of the advertised storage space on 8 GB and 16 GB devices would be consumed …

APOD: Vela Supernova Remnant (2015 Jan 01) Image Credit & Copyright: CEDIC Team Processing: Wolfgang Leitner http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap150101.html Explanation: The plane of our Milky Way Galaxy runs through this complex and beautiful skyscape. At the northwestern edge of the constellation Vela (the Sails) the telescopic frame is over 10 degrees wide, centered on the brightest glowing filaments of the Vela Supernova Remnant, an expanding debris cloud from the death explosion of a massive star. Light from the supernova explosion that created the Vela remnant reached Earth about 11,000 years ago. In addition to the shocked filaments of glowing gas, the cosmic catastrophe also left behind an incredibly dense, rotating stellar core, the Vela Pulsar. Some 800 light-years distant, the Vela remnant is likely embedded in a larger and older supernova remnant, the Gum Nebula http://www.cedic.at/ http://www.astrophoton.com/VelaSNR-3.htm Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=150101 #APOD

The Most Jaw-Dropping Space Pictures Of 2014

As Carl Sagan said in Cosmos,"the size and age of the cosmos are beyond ordinary human understanding. Lost somewhere between immensity and eternity is our tiny planetary home."<p>This year was an especially big year for space observation and exploration.<p>In 2014 we've seen auroras transform the sky, …

Here’s the First True Color Photo of Earth Snapped by Japan’s New Himawari 8 Weather Satellite

The Japan Meteorological Agency launched its latest weather satellite called the Himawari 8 this past October. A few days ago the agency released the …

The Sun

Learn more about the life-giving star at the center of our solar system.<p>Compared with the billions of other stars in the universe, the sun is unremarkable. But for Earth and the other planets that revolve around it, the sun is a powerful center of attention. It holds the solar system together; …

Zero-G Simulator Lets You Float Through an Oculus Rift Space Station

Virtual reality designer Martin Schubert's 'Weightless' uses Magic Leap motion capture software to give you virtual hands as you float through a space station in Oculus Rift.<p>Even as space tourism becomes a reality, escaping Earth's atmosphere is still well outside the average person's price range. …

Virtual Reality

New Doubt About Dark Matter

Tantalizing ‘signals’ from a handful of recent high-energy searches for dark matter are more likely the product of conventional astrophysics than the first tentative detections of the universe’s missing mass, say skeptical astrophysicists.<p>“A decade ago, no [one] would make these claims without …

India takes giant step to manned space mission

The successful launch of India's first rocket equipped with an astronaut module brings it closer to sending a man into space<p>India took a giant step towards to making its first manned space mission after it successfully launched its latest rocket with a crew module for astronauts.<p>The testing of its …

Space Exploration

APOD: This Comet Lovejoy (2014 Dec 25) Image Credit & Copyright: Damian Peach http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141225.html Explanation: Comet Lovejoy, C/2014 Q2, is framed like a cosmic Christmas tree with starry decorations in this colorful telescopic portrait, snapped on December 16th. Its lovely coma is tinted green by diatomic C2 gas fluorescing in sunlight. Discovered in August of this year, this Comet Lovejoy is currently sweeping north through the constellation Columba, heading for Lepus south of Orion and bright enough to offer good binocular views. Not its first time through the inner Solar System, this Comet Lovejoy will pass closest to planet Earth on January 7, while its perihelion (closest point to the Sun) will be on January 30. Of course, planet Earth's own 2015 perihelion passage is scheduled for January 4. A long period comet, this Comet Lovejoy should return again ... in about 8,000 years. http://www.damianpeach.com/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141225 #APOD

Breathtaking Long Exposure Images of the Night Sky

The Universe is an all-encompassing area of space, time and everything else that exists, as well as all stars, galaxies, planets, the contents of …

26 Pictures That Will Make You Re-Evaluate Your Entire Existence

The universe, man... THE UNIVERSE.

Universe

20 Crazy Facts About Sex I Found on the Internet

You might know a lot about sex, but you don't know everything.<p>You might know a lot about sex, but you don't know <i>everything</i>. In my years of sex research, I've kept a list of the most startling and bizarre sex facts I've ever come across. Below are 20 of my favorite weird truths that I found on the …

U.S. set to blame North Korea for Sony hack

The U.S. is ready to blame North Korea for the crippling hack attack at Sony Pictures, as the studio said Wednesday it would cancel next week's planned release of its controversial comedy "The Interview."<p>U.S. investigators say an announcement pinning the blame on hackers working for the Pyongyang …

APOD: Reflections on the 1970s (2014 Dec 19) Image Credit & Copyright: Jimmy Walker http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141219.html Explanation: The 1970s are sometimes ignored by astronomers, like this beautiful grouping of reflection nebulae in Orion - NGC 1977, NGC 1975, and NGC 1973 - usually overlooked in favor of the substantial glow from the nearby stellar nursery better known as the Orion Nebula. Found along Orion's sword just north of the bright Orion Nebula complex, these reflection nebulae are also associated with Orion's giant molecular cloud about 1,500 light-years away, but are dominated by the characteristic blue color of interstellar dust reflecting light from hot young stars. In this sharp color image a portion of the Orion Nebula appears along the bottom border with the cluster of reflection nebulae at picture center. NGC 1977 stretches across the field just below center, separated from NGC 1973 (above right) and NGC 1975 (above left) by dark regions laced with faint red emission from hydrogen atoms. Taken together, the dark regions suggest to many the shape of a running man. http://jwalk.smugmug.com/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141219 #APOD

APOD: W5: Pillars of Star Formation (2014 Dec 16) Image Credit: WISE, IRSA, NASA; Processing & Copyright : Francesco Antonucci http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141216.html Explanation: How do stars form? Images of the star forming region W5 like those in the infrared by NASA's Wide Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite provide clear clues with indications that massive stars near the center of empty cavities are older than stars near the edges. A likely reason for this is that the older stars in the center are actually triggering the formation of the younger edge stars. The triggered star formation occurs when hot outflowing gas compresses cooler gas into knots dense enough to gravitationally contract into stars. In the featured scientifically-colored infrared image, spectacular pillars, left slowly evaporating from the hot outflowing gas, provide further visual clues. W5 is also known as IC 1848, and together with IC 1805 form a complex region of star formation popularly dubbed the Heart and Soul Nebulas. The above image highlights a part of W5 spanning about 2,000 light years that is rich in star forming pillars. W5 lies about 6,500 light years away toward the constellation of Cassiopeia. http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/WISE/main/ http://irsa.ipac.caltech.edu/Missions/wise.html http://www.astrobin.com/users/FrankAntonucci/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141216 #APOD

Is there life on Mars? We are tantalisingly close to being able to say: ‘Yes’

Unusual clusters of methane on the Mars could be being produced by biological organisms, Nasa say<p>Since William Herschel spotted polar ice caps on Mars in the mid-17th century, astronomers have speculated that life could exist on a planet which seemed so similar to Earth.<p>But when probes began to …

France's First Cannabis E-Cigarette Is Completely Legal

The Kanavape is a vaporizer that lets users inhale the pain-relieving cannabinoid CBD without inhaling any of that intoxicating THC.<p><i>This article first appeared on VICE France</i><p>Since the Single Convention of Narcotic​ Drugs in 1961, cultivating, selling, and transporting cannabis has been strictly …

APOD: Geminid Fireball over Mount Balang (2014 Dec 17) Image Credit: Alvin Wu http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141217.html Explanation: This was a sky to remember. While viewing the Geminids meteor shower a few days ago, a bright fireball was captured over Mt. Balang, China with particularly picturesque surroundings. In the foreground, a sea of light clouds slowly floated between dark mountain peaks. In the background, the constellation of Orion shone brightly, with the familiar three stars of Orion's belt visible near the image top right. Sirius, the brightest star in the night sky, is visible near the image center. The bright fireball flashed for only a fraction of second on the lower right. The source of the fireball was a pebble that intersected the protective atmosphere of Earth, originally expelled by the Sun-orbiting asteroid-like object 3200 Phaethon. Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141217 #APOD

Curiosity rover's discovery of methane ‘spikes’ fuels speculation of life on Mars

Nasa’s rover measures fluctuations of gas not easily explained by geology or organic material dropped by meteorites<p>Nasa’s robotic rover, Curiosity, has detected fluctuating wafts of methane on Mars, fuelling speculation that the gas may be coming from a form of life on the red planet.<p>An instrument …

APOD: The Infrared Visible Andromeda (2014 Dec 13) Image Credit: Subaru Telescope (NAOJ), Hubble Space Telescope (NASA, ESA, STScI), Mayall 4M Telescope (KPNO, NOAO), Digitized Sky Survey, Spitzer Space Telescope; Processing & Copyright: Robert Gendler http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141213.html Explanation: This remarkable synthetic color composite image was assembled from archives of visible light and infrared astronomy image data. The field of view spans the Andromeda Galaxy (M31), a massive spiral a mere 2.5 million light-years away. In fact, with over twice the diameter of our own Milky Way, Andromeda is the largest nearby galaxy. Andromeda's population of bright young blue stars lie along its sweeping spiral arms, with the telltale reddish glow of star forming regions traced in space- and ground-based visible light data. But infrared data from the Spitzer Space Telescope, also blended directly into the detailed composite's red and green color channels, highlight the the lumpy dust lanes warmed by the young stars as they wind even closer to the galaxy's core. Otherwise invisible at optical wavelengths, the warm dust takes on orange hues. Two smaller companion galaxies, M110 (below) and M32 (above) are also included in the frame. http://www.naoj.org/ http://hla.stsci.edu/ http://www.noao.edu/kpno/ http://archive.stsci.edu/dss/ http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/ http://www.robgendlerastropics.com/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141213 #APOD

APOD: Molecular Cloud Barnard 68 (2014 Dec 14) Image Credit: FORS Team, 8.2-meter VLT Antu, ESO http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141214.html Explanation: Where did all the stars go? What used to be considered a hole in the sky is now known to astronomers as a dark molecular cloud. Here, a high concentration of dust and molecular gas absorb practically all the visible light emitted from background stars. The eerily dark surroundings help make the interiors of molecular clouds some of the coldest and most isolated places in the universe. One of the most notable of these dark absorption nebulae is a cloud toward the constellation Ophiuchus known as Barnard 68, pictured above. That no stars are visible in the center indicates that Barnard 68 is relatively nearby, with measurements placing it about 500 light-years away and half a light-year across. It is not known exactly how molecular clouds like Barnard 68 form, but it is known that these clouds are themselves likely places for new stars to form. In fact, Barnard 68 itself has been found likely to collapse and form a new star system. It is possible to look right through the cloud in infrared light. http://www.eso.org/sci/facilities/paranal/instruments/fors.html http://www.eso.org/projects/vlt/ http://www.eso.org/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141214 #APOD

Time-Lapse of Lightning Storms in Africa As Seen From Space Station

Lightning storms flash across Africa while the Milky Way is visible beyond Earth’s horizon in this beautiful time-lapse video recorded by the crew of …

Construction has been approved for the world's largest telescope

The world's largest telescope is finally going to see the light of day. The European Southern Observatory's Council announced earlier today that it had greenlit the planned construction project in Chile, which means that humans will have access to the aptly named "European Extremely Large …

The Geminids: world's best meteor shower on show this weekend

They’re pea-sized pieces of cosmic rock and they’re lighting up our night sky this weekend.<p>The annual Geminids meteor shower is hitting earth’s atmosphere, and Saturday and Sunday are the best nights to see it.<p>Andrew Jacob, the Sydney Observatory’s astronomy curator, says the meteors will be most …

Man Utd news: Louis van Gaal says Robin van Persie is 'lucky to be playing' due to poor form

Old Trafford manager says only a lack of strike options kept Dutchman in team during his recent struggles<p>Louis Van Gaal has admitted that Robin van Persie was a “lucky boy” to have kept his place leading the attack in the <b>Manchester United</b> team this season.<p>Van Persie has conceded that he endured a …