The Sweet Neil Observer

My personal favorites from around Tumblr. Art, style, social justice, LGBTQA+, books, feminism, and humor.

fastcompany:

From a net-zero energy historic courthouse in Colorado to a homeless center in Oregon filled with green space, these days, the best sustainable architecture goes far beyond a few rooftop solar panels. 
Read More>

fastcompany:

From a net-zero energy historic courthouse in Colorado to a homeless center in Oregon filled with green space, these days, the best sustainable architecture goes far beyond a few rooftop solar panels. 

Read More>

(via npr)

withinthepines:

SlutWalk, Austin, TX. Photo by Malcolm Keating.

withinthepines:

SlutWalk, Austin, TX. Photo by Malcolm Keating.

(via girlcodemovement)

returquoise:

When you try to think of a word and can only remember it in another language.

This has happened once or twice.

(via linguisticsyall)

wordpainting:

Yes, this is what I need …a char where I’m surrounded by books.

wordpainting:

Yes, this is what I need …a char where I’m surrounded by books.

(Source: theycallmegomer)

engineeringhistory:

Thomas Edison’s electric pen with accessories, first developed in 1875.

the-actual-universe:

International Dark Sky Week - April 20-26International Dark Sky Week, created in 2003 by high-school student Jennifer Barlow, is a key component of Global Astronomy Month (April). The International Dark-Sky Association aims to spread awareness to the issues around light pollution as well as provide solutions to mitigate it. In 2001, “The First World Atlas of the Artificial Night Sky Brightness” reported two-thirds of the U.S. population and more than 50% of the European population had already lost the ability to see the Milky Way with the naked eye (x). The report also showed that 63% of the world population and 99% of the population of the European Union and the United States (excluding Alaska and Hawaii) lived in regions where the night sky is brighter than the threshold for light-polluted status set by the International Astronomical Union. In 1994, an earthquake knocked out the power in Los Angeles. Many residents called local emergency centres reporting a strange “giant, silvery cloud” in the dark sky. That giant, silvery cloud was the Milky Way, which many residents had just seen for the first time. Light pollution can also affect human health. Light photons need to impact the retina for biologic effects to occur. Nuisance light becomes a health hazard when there is a lot of artificial light at night, in cities like Manhattan or Las Vegas. This is because there is more opportunity for the retina to be exposed to photons that might disrupt circadian rhythm. The circadian clock is a 24-hour day/night cycle, which affects physiologic processes in most organisms. There is a large amount of epidemiologic evidence that indicates a consistent association between exposure to indoor artificial nighttime light and health problems such as breast cancer (x). This association does not prove that artificial light causes the problem, however laboratory studies have shown exposure to light during the night disrupts circadian and neuroendocrine physiology, which then accelerates tumour growth (x).Flora and fauna are also affected by light pollution. Prolonged exposure to artificial light has been shown to affect trees from adjusting to seasonal variations, which then affects wildlife that depend on trees for their natural habitat (x). Research on wildlife species has shown that light pollution can alter behaviours, foraging areas, and breeding cycles. One dramatic example of this is sea turtles. Many species of sea turtles lay their eggs on beaches, and the females of the species return to the same beaches to nest. When these beaches are brightly lit at night, these lights can disorient the females who then wander onto nearby roadways and get struck by vehicles (x). Sea turtle hatchlings typically head toward the sea by orienting away from the dark silhouette of the landward horizon. With bright artificial lights on the beach, these hatchlings become disoriented and navigate toward the artificial light source, never finding the sea.The image used shows the Bortle Dark Sky Scale, created by John E. Bortle and published here: (1, 2). It is a guide for amateur astronomers and is a nine-level numeric scale that measures the night sky’s and stars’ brightness of a particular location. Class 1 represents the darkest skies available on Earth while Class 9 shows inner-city skiesReducing light pollution is not just about being able to see the night sky much more effectively. It is also about saving money, energy and reducing greenhouse gases while protecting the environment, wildlife, and improving human health. This is not to say that artificial lighting is bad; it is when artificial lighting becomes inefficient, annoying, and unnecessary that it is known as light pollution. To aid in minimising light pollution, you can shield outdoor lighting, or at least angle it downward and use light only when needed. Motion detectors and timers are also useful. Use only the amount of illumination you need and try reducing lamp wattage.Stay tuned on The Universe for Dark Sky Week: we’ll be showcasing various Night Sky photographers and their issues with light pollution, throughout the week.-TELFor more information on light pollution, click here.Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6Image is a screenshot of the Light Pollution Simulation / Bortle Scale

the-actual-universe:

International Dark Sky Week - April 20-26

International Dark Sky Week, created in 2003 by high-school student Jennifer Barlow, is a key component of Global Astronomy Month (April). The International Dark-Sky Association aims to spread awareness to the issues around light pollution as well as provide solutions to mitigate it. 

In 2001, “The First World Atlas of the Artificial Night Sky Brightness” reported two-thirds of the U.S. population and more than 50% of the European population had already lost the ability to see the Milky Way with the naked eye (x). The report also showed that 63% of the world population and 99% of the population of the European Union and the United States (excluding Alaska and Hawaii) lived in regions where the night sky is brighter than the threshold for light-polluted status set by the International Astronomical Union. In 1994, an earthquake knocked out the power in Los Angeles. Many residents called local emergency centres reporting a strange “giant, silvery cloud” in the dark sky. That giant, silvery cloud was the Milky Way, which many residents had just seen for the first time. 

Light pollution can also affect human health. Light photons need to impact the retina for biologic effects to occur. Nuisance light becomes a health hazard when there is a lot of artificial light at night, in cities like Manhattan or Las Vegas. This is because there is more opportunity for the retina to be exposed to photons that might disrupt circadian rhythm. The circadian clock is a 24-hour day/night cycle, which affects physiologic processes in most organisms. There is a large amount of epidemiologic evidence that indicates a consistent association between exposure to indoor artificial nighttime light and health problems such as breast cancer (x). This association does not prove that artificial light causes the problem, however laboratory studies have shown exposure to light during the night disrupts circadian and neuroendocrine physiology, which then accelerates tumour growth (x).

Flora and fauna are also affected by light pollution. Prolonged exposure to artificial light has been shown to affect trees from adjusting to seasonal variations, which then affects wildlife that depend on trees for their natural habitat (x). Research on wildlife species has shown that light pollution can alter behaviours, foraging areas, and breeding cycles. 

One dramatic example of this is sea turtles. Many species of sea turtles lay their eggs on beaches, and the females of the species return to the same beaches to nest. When these beaches are brightly lit at night, these lights can disorient the females who then wander onto nearby roadways and get struck by vehicles (x). Sea turtle hatchlings typically head toward the sea by orienting away from the dark silhouette of the landward horizon. With bright artificial lights on the beach, these hatchlings become disoriented and navigate toward the artificial light source, never finding the sea.

The image used shows the Bortle Dark Sky Scale, created by John E. Bortle and published here: (1, 2). It is a guide for amateur astronomers and is a nine-level numeric scale that measures the night sky’s and stars’ brightness of a particular location. Class 1 represents the darkest skies available on Earth while Class 9 shows inner-city skies

Reducing light pollution is not just about being able to see the night sky much more effectively. It is also about saving money, energy and reducing greenhouse gases while protecting the environment, wildlife, and improving human health. This is not to say that artificial lighting is bad; it is when artificial lighting becomes inefficient, annoying, and unnecessary that it is known as light pollution. To aid in minimising light pollution, you can shield outdoor lighting, or at least angle it downward and use light only when needed. Motion detectors and timers are also useful. Use only the amount of illumination you need and try reducing lamp wattage.

Stay tuned on The Universe for Dark Sky Week: we’ll be showcasing various Night Sky photographers and their issues with light pollution, throughout the week.

-TEL

For more information on light pollution, click here.
Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
Image is a screenshot of the Light Pollution Simulation / Bortle Scale

textbook:

Watch the full video, trust me.

Not entirely sure how I feel about this……

textbook:

Watch the full video, trust me.

Not entirely sure how I feel about this……

storypanda:

Books Transform Their World | Illustration by Sara Infante

storypanda:

Books Transform Their World | Illustration by Sara Infante

(via teachingliteracy)

biologicalmarginalia:

Julije Klović’s very early (c. 1539–1546) illustration of a Greater Bird of Paradise (left), the first known color illustration produced by a European. This may have been one of the skins brought back from the Maluku Islands by Magellan’s crew in 1622.Mužinić, J. et al. (2009) Julije Klović: the first colour drawing of Greater Bird of Paradise Paradisaea apoda in Europe and its model. Journal of Ornithology 150(3) 645–649.

biologicalmarginalia:

Julije Klović’s very early (c. 1539–1546) illustration of a Greater Bird of Paradise (left), the first known color illustration produced by a European. This may have been one of the skins brought back from the Maluku Islands by Magellan’s crew in 1622.

Mužinić, J. et al. (2009) Julije Klović: the first colour drawing of Greater Bird of Paradise Paradisaea apoda in Europe and its model. Journal of Ornithology 150(3) 645–649.

(via scientificillustration)

lifemadesimple:

Will really help to speed up public transport - and no issue of a language barrier.

lifemadesimple:

Will really help to speed up public transport - and no issue of a language barrier.

(via thisbigcity)

etherealvistas:

Twilight Inferno (India) by Daily Travel Photos .::. Pius Lee || Website

etherealvistas:

Twilight Inferno (India) by Daily Travel Photos .::. Pius Lee || Website

(Source: flic.kr)

compoundchem:

A bit of a detour into neuroscience today with a look at the chemical structures of some of the major neurotransmitters in the brain. Inspired in part by this post on the chemicals related to various emotions.

All available to download as free A3 PDFs at the bottom of the accompanying post (http://wp.me/p4aPLT-6C).

(via scientificillustration)

the-actual-universe:

Announcing Kepler 186-f: the First Earth-sized Exoplanet in the Habitable ZoneFor the past five years, the Kepler Space Telescope has allowed astronomers to observe over 3,800 potential exoplanets and confirm around 950 of them. Many of these planets have been discovered in what’s known as the goldilocks zone. This is an area around a host star where the conditions are right for liquid water to pool on a planet’s surface. Simply being in the habitable or goldilocks zone does not guarantee a planet will be habitable – the conditions have to be just right. Over the years, Kepler has spotted planets that were too hot or too large to truly be habitable. Today astronomers from NASA Ames and the SETI Institute have announced the discovery and validation of the first Earth-sized exoplanet orbiting its host star in the habitable zone. The host star, Kepler-186 is an older, dim red dwarf (or M dwarf) star. This system is home to five exoplanets, one of which could potentially have conditions ideal for life. The planet Kepler-186f, is on the outer edge of the habitable zone, orbiting its star once every 130 days and is approximately ten percent larger than Earth. The system is located approximately 500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cygnus. Red dwarf stars are the most common stellar variety, with 7 out of every 10 stars in the Milky Way being M dwarf stars. Unlike our Sun, which is a yellow dwarf (G-type star), M dwarf stars are much cooler and dimmer. It is nearly impossible to determine the age of red dwarfs; however, their long life spans and cooler temperatures result in a closer habitable zone. M dwarf stars could very well be home to life beyond Earth. There are many characteristics of habitable planets aside from their location in the habitable zone – planet size and atmospheric conditions also play a role. Based on Kepler observations, astronomers have determined the size of Kepler-186f but not the composition or mass. Previous data indicates a planet the size of Kepler-186f would have a rocky composition similar to the Earth’s. Astronomers made this exciting discovery using the transitive method. The host star was observed and any dip in brightness would be indicative of another celestial body (such as a planet) crossing in front of it. Since Kepler-186f is only slightly larger than Earth and orbits fairly close to its star, we cannot directly observe it here on Earth. However with the upcoming Transiting Exoplanet Search Satellite (TESS) launching in 2017 and the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) launching in 2018, we should soon be able to have a clearer picture of what Kepler-186f and other M dwarf planets are made of. -ALTImage & Source Credit: NASA/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

the-actual-universe:

Announcing Kepler 186-f: the First Earth-sized Exoplanet in the Habitable Zone

For the past five years, the Kepler Space Telescope has allowed astronomers to observe over 3,800 potential exoplanets and confirm around 950 of them. Many of these planets have been discovered in what’s known as the goldilocks zone. This is an area around a host star where the conditions are right for liquid water to pool on a planet’s surface. Simply being in the habitable or goldilocks zone does not guarantee a planet will be habitable – the conditions have to be just right. Over the years, Kepler has spotted planets that were too hot or too large to truly be habitable. Today astronomers from NASA Ames and the SETI Institute have announced the discovery and validation of the first Earth-sized exoplanet orbiting its host star in the habitable zone. 

The host star, Kepler-186 is an older, dim red dwarf (or M dwarf) star. This system is home to five exoplanets, one of which could potentially have conditions ideal for life. The planet Kepler-186f, is on the outer edge of the habitable zone, orbiting its star once every 130 days and is approximately ten percent larger than Earth. The system is located approximately 500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cygnus. Red dwarf stars are the most common stellar variety, with 7 out of every 10 stars in the Milky Way being M dwarf stars. Unlike our Sun, which is a yellow dwarf (G-type star), M dwarf stars are much cooler and dimmer. It is nearly impossible to determine the age of red dwarfs; however, their long life spans and cooler temperatures result in a closer habitable zone. M dwarf stars could very well be home to life beyond Earth. 

There are many characteristics of habitable planets aside from their location in the habitable zone – planet size and atmospheric conditions also play a role. Based on Kepler observations, astronomers have determined the size of Kepler-186f but not the composition or mass. Previous data indicates a planet the size of Kepler-186f would have a rocky composition similar to the Earth’s. Astronomers made this exciting discovery using the transitive method. The host star was observed and any dip in brightness would be indicative of another celestial body (such as a planet) crossing in front of it. Since Kepler-186f is only slightly larger than Earth and orbits fairly close to its star, we cannot directly observe it here on Earth. However with the upcoming Transiting Exoplanet Search Satellite (TESS) launching in 2017 and the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) launching in 2018, we should soon be able to have a clearer picture of what Kepler-186f and other M dwarf planets are made of. 

-ALT

Image & Source Credit: NASA/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

hystoree:

ecowatchorg:

UC Davis Converts Waste Into Clean Energy With Nation’s Largest Campus Biodigester
http://ecowatch.com/2014/04/22/uc-davis-waste-energy-biodigester/

This is encouraging! Waste…plenty of that….into energy!

hystoree:

ecowatchorg:

UC Davis Converts Waste Into Clean Energy With Nation’s Largest Campus Biodigester

This is encouraging! Waste…plenty of that….into energy!