Geek Month in Review: October 2012

By JB Sanders

Onwards to Halloween!

What’s Invisible? More Than You Think.
Great educational (but fun!) animated TED talk about what you can’t see and other random weird things.

How to Survive a Plane Crash
Watch news footage (and some commentary) of safety experts crashing a big jet into the ground, and see what effect where you sit and what you do to prepare for the crash can do for you.

Molotov Cocktail in Slow Motion
Very cool flame blossom on this super-slo-mo video of a molotov cocktail thrown against the side of a house.
Obviously, don’t try this at home without a company of firefighters and an ambulance handy.

And for reference, the Molotov Cocktail got its name during Winter War between the Soviet Union and Finland. It was not complimentary to Mr Molotov.

Stop-Motion LEGO Dr Strangelove
And you’ve already clicked on the link, haven’t you? If you haven’t, it’s part of the war-room scene.

Safest Country in Europe?
Albania: home of 750,000 bunkers. Seriously. That’s one bunker for every 4 Albanians. Apparently the paranoid dictator who ruled there had them built between 1967 and 1986. They’re being repurposed as restaurants, nightclubs, tattoo parlors, and storage facilities.

Dr Who a Religion?
Video posits whether Dr Who fans constitute a religion. Interesting discussion, and no spoilers.

Enjoy Rain Without the Wet
A new 3D art installation at London’s Barbican Centre fills a room with rain — except where each visitor is standing. No running, though, or the detection systems that prevent rain from falling on you won’t be able to keep up.

Behind the Scenes Photos: Raiders of the Lost Ark
See Lucas and Spielberg before the billionaire years. See laughs. See the way they did the melting faces.

How to Control Your Own Dreams
Ever wondered how to control your own dreams? To perform Lucid Dreaming? Wonder know more!
(Controlling the dreams of others is covered in a different video.)

Does D&D Make You More Successful?
This question posed by the IDEA channel guy and then discussed. LOTS of geeky gaming references contained within!

Underwater Atomic Explosion for Your Files
Apparently a lot of the footage taken of the early atomic experiments has been declassified and put up on YouTube. This one is an underwater explosion, with a ship in the foreground for scale.

Are We All in a Computer Sim? Ask Physicists!
It is all really just the matrix/system/virtual world? Cosmologists and particle physicists are looking for the answers in some high energy cosmic rays. Extreme science geekiness within.

Two Suns? Pshaw!
How about 4 suns? There’s a planet out there, just discovered, which has four suns: two in it’s own binary system (which it orbits) and another binary star pair that orbits the first binary pair. Woo!

Alpha Centauri Has an Earth-like Planet
The nearest solar system to ours apparently also has a planet Earth-sized. That is SUPER handy, and not just for all the scifi that now becomes possible.

The Science of Blushing
Ever wonder why people blush? I mean, besides putting their foot in their mouth or when someone makes a rude suggestion. Here’s the science.

You’ve Never Seen Lightning Like This
Watch a video of lightning capture at 7,207 frames per second. Yes, you can see just about everywhere it goes. No sound, so feel free to watch it anywhere.

And Speaking of Lightning
Here’s a great article on various lightning safety tips and myths, with some great links (including that previous video of a slo-mo lightning strike).

What You Know About Galaxy Formation is Wrong
Astronomers are discovering that what everyone generally thought about how galaxies form and change over time is wrong.

Original Star Trek Goodness
So here’s a poster-sized picture of practically every major character to have appeared in the original Star Trek series, plus tons of bad guys and ships, too. Enjoy!

70’s Scifi and Superheroes of Television
While we’re on the subject of giant posters of scifi, here’s a character and ship from every scifi or superhero thing made in the 1970’s (same artist). See how many you can identify.

About John:
John’s a geek from way back. He’s been floating between various computer-related jobs for years, until he settled into doing tech support in higher ed. Now he rules the Macs on campus with an iron hand (really, it’s on his desk).

Geek Credentials:
RPG: Blue box D&D, lead minis, been to GenCon in Milwaukee.
Computer: TRS-80 Color Computer, Amiga 1000, UNIX system w/reel-to-reel backup tape
Card games: bought Magic cards at GenCon in 1993
Science: Met Phil Plait, got time on a mainframe for astronomy project in 1983
His Blog: