05 abril 2015

Saturn, Tethys, Rings, and Shadows



Seen from ice moon Tethys, rings and shadows would display fantastic views of the Saturnian system. Haven't dropped in on Tethys lately? Then this gorgeous ringscape from the Cassini spacecraft will have to do for now. Caught in sunlight just below and left of picture center in 2005, Tethys itself is about 1,000 kilometers in diameter and orbits not quite five saturn-radii from the center of the gas giant planet. At that distance (around 300,000 kilometers) it is well outside Saturn's main bright rings, but Tethys is still one of five major moons that find themselves within the boundaries of the faint and tenuous outer E ring. Discovered in the 1980s, two very small moons Telesto and Calypso are locked in stable locations along Tethys' orbit. Telesto precedes and Calypso follows Tethys as the trio circles Saturn.



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the-communist-celery:nowyoukno: Source for more facts follow...





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Those eggs though…



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"Thousands of documents detailing some of the most shameful acts and crimes committed during the..."

“Thousands of documents detailing some of the most shameful acts and crimes committed during the final years of the British empire were systematically destroyed to prevent them falling into the hands of post-independence governments, an official review has concluded…The archive came to light last year when a group of Kenyans detained and allegedly tortured during the Mau Mau rebellion won the right to sue the British government. The Foreign Office promised to release the 8,800 files from 37 former colonies held at the highly-secure government communications centre.”



- but the historian assigned to release the files couldn’t because the documents, which by law should have been in public archives by the 1980s, were mostly illegally hidden and in some cases illegally destroyed. Read the full article about it here
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Do You Suffer From ‘Exploding Head Syndrome’?...





Do You Suffer From ‘Exploding Head Syndrome’? You’re Not Alone.


New findings indicate nearly one in five college-age students has been startled awake by an abrupt, loud noise that doesn’t actually exist. Known as “exploding head syndrome,” the psychological condition appears to be more common and disruptive than previously thought.


Some of you may already be familiar with exploding head syndrome (EHS). It’s not pleasant. It’s characterized by an exceptionally loud noise in the head (sometimes described as “an explosion” in the head), usually during sleep-to-wake or wake-to-sleep transitions. Though benign, it can be extremely stressful.


Here’s what Washington State University psychologist Brian Sharpless, a sleep disorder expert and lead author of a recent study study on the prevalence of EHS among college undergraduates, told me about the condition:


Exploding head syndrome episodes by themselves are harmless. They can cause problems with a relatively small number of people if episodes happen too frequently, regularly disturb sleep, or if people react to them in unhealthy ways (e.g., by becoming really anxious before bedtime or fearing that something more serious may be wrong with them).

Indeed, the effect only lasts for a brief moment, but EHS has been known to make some people think they’re having a seizure or a brain hemorrhage — or that they’re going crazy. Fearing stigma, some people refuse to tell their spouse or doctor (which may explain why it’s rarely discussed in the scientific literature). Conspiracy theories are sometimes used to explain what’s going on, such as the use of some sort of directed-energy weapon.


Not much is known about the causes of EHS or its prevalence. According to clinical lore, it only happens to people in their fifties and older. Previous studies have suggested it manifests mostly among women, or among those suffering from isolated sleep paralysis. Together with his team at Washington State University, Sharpless conducted a survey to learn more.


For his investigation, the results of which were published this month in the Journal of Sleep Research, Sharpless used a clinical diagnostic review to assess 211 undergraduate students for both EHS and isolated sleep paralysis. The sample size may seem a bit small and demographically constrained, but it is considered the largest EHS-related survey to date.


Results showed that 18% of the students experienced EHS at least once in their lives, and that it’s a recurring condition for at least 16% of them. The researchers learned that the prevalence of EHS is roughly equal among the sexes, but that it’s experienced by nearly 37% of those already diagnosed with isolated sleep paralysis (ISP is an unsettling condition where a person cannot perform voluntary muscle movements or speak while waking up). Sharpless says the connection between EHS and ISP may have something to do with a common underlying physical or psychological process, or the fact that college-age students suffer more from sleep disruptions and insomnia.


The study also showed that a small percentage of students experience EHS to such an extent that it’s a significant problem in their life.


"Unfortunately for these individuals there is currently a paucity of treatment options and limited evidence for their efficacy beyond individual case studies," write the researchers in the study.


Because EHS happens when a person is falling asleep, scientists theorize that it’s connected to problems with the brain’s shut-down sequence. They liken it to a computer shutting down, with motor, auditory, and visual neurons switching off in separate phases. Using this analogy, the researchers hypothesize that the auditory neurons of someone with EHS fire all at once, instead of shutting down properly.


"That’s why you get these crazy-loud noises that you can’t explain, and they’re not actual noises in your environment," noted Sharpless in a release. He added that the same part of the brain — the brainstem’s reticular formation — appears to be involved in isolated sleep paralysis as well, which may explain why some people suffer from both conditions.


Sharpless hopes that clinicians will take the condition more seriously, in light of his team’s results. As he told io9:


I think a more general awareness of exploding head syndrome by health professionals would be helpful, especially if they have patients reporting unusual sleep symptoms. Many people with this condition are reluctant to discuss these experiences even with doctors because they may feel embarrassed or might worry that the doctor might think they’re “crazy” in some way. This study shows that exploding head syndrome is not uncommon, at least in college-aged people. Accurate prevalence rates for other ages are not yet known.

The researchers urge for the development of effective treatment options, but add that, for some individuals, reassurance and education may be all that’s needed.

In terms of next steps, Sharpless’s lab is working to determine what things might make EHS more likely to occur.


"My lab is currently looking at psychological and behavioral factors as well as the relationships between exploding head syndrome and other more well-known disorders," he says. "This may lead to the discovery of new treatment options."


Read the entire study at Journal of Sleep Research: “Exploding head syndrome is common in college students.”


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The Tobacco Atlas, Fifth Edition (“The Atlas”), and its...

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suammetuit:mythology meme: gods and goddesses: olympian (4/5) -...













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mythology meme: gods and goddesses: olympian (4/5) - eros and himeros.

H I M E R O S was the god of sexual desire, one of the young Erotes (winged Love-Gods). When the goddess Aphrodite first emerged new-born from the sea-foam’s she was greeted by the twin loves Eros and Himeros. Some say Aphrodite was born pregnant with the twins, and birthed them with her birth. The pair were her constant companions, agents of her divine power. E R O S was the mischievous god of love, a minion and constant companion of the goddess Aphrodite.

poetry by persephonees



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mythology meme: gods and goddesses - olympian (3/5) The Moirai

THE M O I R A I (or Moirae) were the goddesses of fate who personified the inescapable destiny of man. They assinged to every person his or her fate or share in the scheme of things. Their name means “Parts.” “Shares” or “Alottted Portions.” Zeus Moiragetes, the god of fate, was their leader,. Klotho, whose name means “Spinner,” spinned the thread of life. Lakhesis, whose name means “Apportioner of Lots”—being derived from a word meaning to receive by lot—, measured the thread of life. Atropos (or Aisa), whose name means “She who cannot be turned,” cut the thread of life.

At the birth of a man, the Moirai spinned out the thread of his future life, followed his steps, and directed the consequences of his actions according to the counsel of the gods. It was not an inflexible fate; Zeus, if he chose, had the power of saving even those who were already on the point of being seized by their fate. The Fates did not abruptly interfere in human affairs but availed themselves of intermediate causes, and determined the lot of mortals not absolutely, but only conditionally, even man himself, in his freedom was allowed to exercise a certain influence upon them. As man’s fate terminated at his death, the goddesses of fate become the goddesses of death, Moirai Thanatoio.

The Moirai were independent, at the helm of necessity, directed fate, and watched that the fate assigned to every being by eternal laws might take its course without obstruction; and Zeus, as well as the other gods and man, had to submit to them. They assigned to the Erinyes, who inflicted the punishement for evil deeds, their proper functions; and with them they directed fate according to the laws of necessity.

As goddesses of birth, who spinned the thread of life, and even prophesied the fate of the newly born, Eileithyia was their companion. As goddesses of fate they must necessarily have known the future, which at times they revealed, and were therefore prophetic deities. Their ministers were all the soothsayers and oracles.

As goddesses of death, they appeared together with the Keres and the infernal Erinyes.

The Moirai were described as ugly old women, sometimes lame. They were severe, inflexible and stern. Klotho carries a spindle or a roll (the book of ate), Lakhesis a staff with which she points to the horoscope on a globe, and Atropos a scroll, a wax tablet, a sundial, a pair of scales, or a cutting instrument. At other times the three were shown with staffs or sceptres, the symbols of dominion, and sometimes even with crowns. At the birth of each man they appeared spinning, measuring, and cutting the thread of life.



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mythology meme: gods and goddesses - olympian (2/5) - demetr

D E M E T R was the great Olympian goddess of agriculture, grain, and bread, the prime sustenance of mankind. She also presided over the foremost of the Mystery Cults which promised its intiates the path to a blessed afterlife. Demeter was depicted as a mature woman, often crowned and holding sheafs of wheat and and a torch.


some of the famous myths:

The abduction of her daughter Persephone by Hades, and the great dearth she brought down upon the earth;

The nursing of Demophoon, the young son of King Keleus of Eleusis;

The journeys of Triptolemos, a hero sent by the goddess to instruct mankind in agriculture;

Her assault by Poseidon who forcefully coupled with her in the form of a horse;

The punishment of Erysikhthon who was cursed with an unquenchable hunger by the goddess for cutting down her holy grove.



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MODERN GREEK MYTHOLOGY + Calendars - insp


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mythology meme: gods and goddesses: underworld (2/5) - thanatos

T H A N A T O S (or Thanatus) was the god or daimon of non-violent death. His touch was gentle, likened to that of his twin brother Hypnos (Sleep). Violent death was the domain of Thanatos’ blood-craving sisters, the Keres, spirits of slaughter and disease.

Thanatos plays a prominent role in two myths. Once when he was sent to fetch Alkestis to the underworld, he was driven off by Herakles in a fight. Another time he was captured by the criminal Sisyphos who trapped him in a sack so as to avoid death.

In Greek vase painting Thanatos was depicted as a winged, bearded older man, or more rarely as a beardless youth. He often appears in a scene from the Iliad, opposite his brother Hypnos (Sleep) carrying off the body of Sarpedon. In Roman sculptural reliefs he was portrayed as a youth holding a down-turned torch and wreath or butterfly (symbolsing the soul of the dead).



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The “Million Program” (Miljonprogrammet) was an...





The “Million Program” (Miljonprogrammet) was an ambitious public housing initiative implemented in Sweden between 1965 and 1974. Aiming to give everyone a modern home at a reasonable price, it was the most ambitious building program in the world – adding one million new homes in a nation of eight million.


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April 5th 1722: Europeans arrive on Easter IslandOn this day in...



1790 image of Europeans recording information abut the moai statues





Jacob Roggeveen (1659 - 1729)





The Moai statues today



April 5th 1722: Europeans arrive on Easter Island


On this day in 1722, the Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen landed on a small island in the Pacific Ocean, and named the island for the day they arrived - Easter Sunday. The early history of ‘Easter Island’ remains largely a mystery to historians, especially the question of how the first settlers endured the long sea voyage to the remote island in a pre-industrial age; it is agreed that the island was populated by 1200 CE. By the time of European arrival, the island’s Rapa Nui population had dwindled to only around 2,500, partly due to widespread deforestation. Islanders’ initial contact with Europeans did not go well, and a misunderstanding led the Dutch to kill several people. Spanish ships arrived in 1770, and four years later the British fleet of James Cook landed on Easter Island. The nineteenth century saw the tragic exploitation of the island’s indigenous people, with slave raids, disease, and war devastating the Rapa Nui. European colonisation increasingly exercised more control over the island, sending missionaries and eventually, in 1888, Chile annexed Easter Island. The island remains a popular tourist attraction, mainly for its iconic moai statues which were supposedly used for traditional ancestor worship, and indicate a thriving culture.


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reportagebygettyimages:Nearly two million people die from...



David Rochkind/Reportage by Getty Images/WHO





David Rochkind/Reportage by Getty Images





David Rochkind/Reportage by Getty Images



reportagebygettyimages:



Nearly two million people die from Tuberculosis (TB) every year, according to the World Health Organization. Among certain populations, such as miners in South Africa and prisoners in Moldova, cramped living or working conditions make the disease particularly rampant.


Photographer David Rochkind has spent years documenting the human face of TB around the world. See more from his project Epidemic.



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