ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I went outside to bring in the stones.  The moon is very white again. It's so bright I can see colors: the dim periwinkle of my gloves, the red of the lawn mower, the green of the stones.  The sky is a dusky blue instead of black, and most of the stars are gone.  It is cold that everything crunches.  The air crinkles in my nose when I breathe.  My coat crackles.  The ground beneath my feet is covered in frost, glittering and brilliant, ice tinkling with every step.  The shadows the tree branches crisscross the ground with black.  It is all very beautiful. 
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
We have a fabulous view of the lunar eclipse tonight.  The moon was very bright a couple hours ago, with stars around it, when we set out the stones to be charged.  Now it is all dark with a lot more stars!  Sometimes the color doesn't really change much.  Tonight most of it is black with just a little orange left.  We even got a bit of a diamond ring effect as the last light was fading.  :D 

Sky Watch

Dec. 18th, 2018 12:26 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
See the first image from inside the sun's atmosphere

The Ursid meteor shower will be washed out by a full moon, but you might get lucky and see something anyway.

The most distant object in the solar system is Farout.  Yes, really.  <3 geeks.

Check out these pictures from the Geminid meteor shower.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 ... have been documented.  Wow.

Now I want to name it something like Gypsy Vanner or Callipygia.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Various tools can help vision-impaired people explore astronomy.

One method turns telescope data into sound, which can reveal interesting patterns. 

Tactile maps also let people feel how stars, moons, and planets are arranged or shaped.


Oct. 4th, 2018 08:56 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 The first exomoon may have been discovered.  It's about the size of Neptune.

Go Pluto!

Sep. 18th, 2018 02:37 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 I wondered when science would get around to recognizing this.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
We're being visited by an asteroid. It will pass by us about half the distance between Earth and Luna.   For those of you interested in writing alternate history, it has an estimated diameter in the range of 100-230 feet (32-71 meters).  Here are some impact calculators to estimate the damage.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Scientists have discovered a small quantity of liquid water hidden on Mars.  Now I want to go play in the mud.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the May 15, 2018 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] siliconshaman and [personal profile] sporky_rat. It also fills the "nerd" square in my 5-1-18 Roles card for the Pro Wrestling Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by a pool with [personal profile] ng_moonmoth, [personal profile] technoshaman, and EdorFaus. It belongs to the Aquariana thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an article about matter and antimatter in the universe.  The scientists are being all baffled about why the universe is pretty much all matter and no antimatter.  I can think of several explanations, some more likely than others.

* Sheer chance.  Just because a penny comes up heads umpteen zillion times in a row doesn't mean it has to come up tails the next time.  Chance is extremely unlikely, but it is an absolutely valid possibility.

* When matter and antimatter collide, they tend to explode.  We might've started out with a lot more matter and most of it blew itself up, leaving a tiny fraction of whichever type was slightly more prevalent.  Once the scale is tipped it tends to stay that way.

* They also don't like to live together, which tends to create mirror-twin universes, one of matter and one of antimatter.  Imagine if people lived on a magnet, they'd wonder why it was all North because they didn't know about the South end.  This and the previous one are moderately possible but difficult to prove.

* Or there could be a mistake in the math.  That's quite possible, and straightforward to prove if enough other brains go over it.

* Or what's there is valid but there's a piece missing that would explain the selection toward matter.  This is likely.  Some things set randomly, but once set, they tend to stay put throughout.  Sugars do it too.


ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)

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