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Archive for August, 2017

Next US Solar Eclipse

August 23rd, 2017 No comments

From Accuweather

Miss 2017’s total solar eclipse? Start planning for the next one in 2024
August 21, 2017; 9:29 AM

Monday’s total solar eclipse was one of the biggest astronomical events of the year, but people that missed it will have the chance to see another in less than a decade.

On April 8, 2024, the shadow of the moon will once again completely block out the sun across the United States, this time from Texas to Maine. Portions of Mexico and eastern Canada will also experience a total solar eclipse. This will provide a second opportunity for people in the U.S. to experience one of nature’s most beautiful displays.

Many major cities will be in the path of the 2024 total solar eclipse, including Dallas; Little Rock, Arkansas; Indianapolis; Cleveland; Buffalo, New York; and Montreal.

Similar to this week’s eclipse, much of the rest of North America will experience a partial solar eclipse on April 8, 2024, with the exception of Alaska and far northwestern Canada.

Some areas in 2017’s total solar eclipse path of totality will once again experience a total solar eclipse in 2024, including Carbondale, Illinois; Cape Girardeau, Missouri; and Paducah, Kentucky.

While the next total solar eclipse in the U.S. will not occur until 2024, it will be preceded by an annular solar eclipse just a few months prior.

During an annular solar eclipse, the moon is farther away from the Earth, so it is not quite large enough to block out all of the light from the sun. Because of this, this type of eclipse has been given the nickname of the ‘Ring of Fire’ eclipse.

This Ring of Fire eclipse will occur on Oct. 14, 2023, and will be visible from California to Texas and across portions of Central America and South America.

An annular solar eclipse is seen in the sky over Yokohama near Tokyo Monday, May 21, 2012. The annular solar eclipse, in which the moon passes in front of the sun leaving only a golden ring around its edges, was visible to wide areas across the continent Monday morning. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)

People from coast to coast have often called 2017’s eclipse the ‘Great American Eclipse,’ but this name might also be adopted for a solar eclipse later this century.

On Aug. 12, 2045, the shadow of the moon will once again track across the United States, this time from Northern California to Florida.

Some may argue that this eclipse will be more impressive than 2017’s as the moon will completely block out the sun for over 6 minutes, more than twice as long as this week’s eclipse.

This will also be the longest total solar eclipse experienced anywhere in the world until 2114.

Categories: Space Tags:

Watch “ECLIPSE 2017” on YouTube

August 22nd, 2017 No comments

Categories: Space Tags:

My Eclipse Pics

August 21st, 2017 No comments

I watched the eclipse from Lake Barkley State Park in Kentucky. I am so glad I took the day and traveled to see totality. It was an experience I shall NEVER NEVER EVER forget!

Below are just two of the shots I took…..

To see all my shots….click here

Categories: Space Tags:

Watch “Massive robot dance – Guinness World Records” on YouTube

August 18th, 2017 No comments

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Boston Dynamics Ted Talk

August 13th, 2017 No comments

Just to show that not all Boston Dynamics demos go as badly as Atlas falling off the stage. Here is a Ted Talk showing off the ability of some of their robots:

Categories: Robot News Tags:

Watch ATLAS the Robot Autonomously Fall Off a Stage

August 8th, 2017 No comments

From: Gizmodo

ATLAS is an incredible machine. There’s no way around that. First unveiled in 2013, the humanoid robot can now walk around autonomously, move boxes around, and implicitly threaten to destroy humanity. This level of sophistication is exactly why it’s so damn funny when ATLAS fucks up.

Boston Dynamics, the company that builds this incredible robot, recently gave a presentation at the Congress of Future Science and Technology Leaders. It was a pretty normal dog-and-pony show for the company. ATLAS walked around the stage autonomously, while a human guided SpotMini the dogbot across the stage with a controller.

Everything was going great until it came time for ATLAS to exit the stage. Even though the robot had successfully pulled off the maneuver in rehearsal, ATLAS really ate it during the actual performance. By the looks of it, ATLAS caught his foot on a stage light and just went ass over elbows through the back curtain.

But again, how can we be mad at ATLAS? This robot is a true feat of human engineering and ingenuity. Armies of them might even fight wars for us one day. Which brings us back to that Terminator reference. We’re probably doomed to die at the feet of ATLAS in the inevitable robot uprising, so we might as well get our yuks in now.

Categories: Robot News Tags:

The Guy Who Invented Those Annoying Password Rules Now Regrets Wasting Your Time

August 8th, 2017 No comments

From: Gizmodo

We’ve all been forced to do it: create a password with at least so many characters, so many numbers, so many special characters, and maybe an uppercase letter. Guess what? The guy who invented these standards nearly 15 years ago now admits that they’re basically useless. He is also very sorry.

The man in question is Bill Burr, a former manager at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). In 2003, Burr drafted an eight-page guide on how to create secure passwords creatively called the “NIST Special Publication 800-63. Appendix A.” This became the document that would go on to more or less dictate password requirements on everything from email accounts to login pages to your online banking portal. All those rules about using uppercase letters and special characters and numbers—those are all because of Bill.

The only problem is that Bill Burr didn’t really know much about how passwords worked back in 2003, when he wrote the manual. He certainly wasn’t a security expert. And now the retired 72-year-old bureaucrat wants to apologize.

“Much of what I did I now regret,” Bill Burr told The Wall Street Journal recently, admitting that his research into passwords mostly came from a white paper written in the 1980s, well before the web was even invented. “In the end, [the list of guidelines] was probably too complicated for a lot of folks to understand very well, and the truth is, it was barking up the wrong tree.”

Bill is not wrong. Simple math shows that a shorter password with wacky characters is much easier to crack than a long string of easy-to-remember words. This classic XKCD comic shows how four simple words create a passphrase that would take a computer 550 years to guess, while a nonsensical string of random characters would take approximately three days:

This is why the latest set of NIST guidelines recommends that people create long passphrases rather than gobbledygook words like the ones Bill thought were secure. (Pro tip: Use this guide to create a super secure passcode using a pair of dice.)

Inevitably, you have to wonder if Bill not only feels regretful but also a little embarrassed. It’s not entirely his fault either. Fifteen years ago, there was very little research into passwords and information security, while researchers can now draw on millions upon millions of examples. Bill also wasn’t the only one to come up with some regrettable ideas in the early days of the web, either. Remember pop-ads, the scourge of the mid-aughts internet? The inventor of those is super sorry as well. Oh, and the confusing, unnecessary double slash in web addresses? The inventor of that idea (and the web itself) Tim Berners-Lee is also sorry.

Technology is often an exercise of trial and error. If you get something right, like Jeff Bezos or Mark Zuckerberg have done, the rewards are sweet. If you screw up and waste years of unsuspecting internet users’ time in the process, like Bill did, you get to apologize years later. We forgive you, Bill. At least some of us do.

[Wall Street Journal]

Categories: Computing Tags:

Watch “Adventures in Science: How GPS Works” on YouTube

August 6th, 2017 No comments

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