IT’S THE LIEBSTER AWARD!

 

 

 

photo-liebster award

Thank You For The Cool Trophy, Really!

Well looky here, I have been nominated for the prestigious, much coveted and fought over, LIEBSTER AWARD! I truly have to give my thanks and appreciation to Shruti of Shruti Insights, for offering me this unexpected and awkwardly wonderful opportunity. She has offered me a chance to experience a shot at the Golden Ring, the Kewpie Doll, the Final frontier of Fame and Glory in the ” Blogosphere “. I certainly would never have attempted, or volunteered for Honors such as these, on my own, so again Thank you for the inspiration, and privilege, only using my fear of shotguns or Wrathful, and thoroughly disappointed Friends, to make a man of me, and Accept this One Giant Leap For Mankind Test. Shruti, you’re the best!
So there are rules to all of this. Apparently in order to be a big shot around these parts, I have to play by THESE RULES.
Put the Liebster Award logo on your blog.
Thank and tag the blog who nominated you.
Answer their questions and come up with 10 new ones for you nominees.
Nominate 8 blogs with less than 200 followers, let them know you’ve nominated them and link them in your post.
No tag-back.

 

So Shruti, with much pounding of heart, I will under take this feat, and I Thank You sincerely for your having Faith and Belief in my abilities!

These are the Ten questions I get to answer!
1.Among your blog posts, which one is your favourite?
Well thank you for asking! My favorite post was a story I wrote a couple of years ago, called ” The Waiting Game”, and It was basically a true story about circumstances I had no control over. I only embellished it a tad.

2.At what time of the day do you usually write a blog post?
That is tricky because I post whenever I am either inspired by an idea, or feel like I’m not delivering enough, or not giving people what they want.

3.What is your favourite word in your native language?
Wow, I wish you hadn’t asked me that. I don’t believe I have a singular favorite word. My favorite phrase is ” Papa, I love you! ”

 

4.What do you like to eat in the morning?
That is an easy one, as I don’t eat in the early day. Usually I start getting hungry about 2 or 3 in the afternoon, and I’m a guy so it really doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it can be wolfed down easily.

 

5.Choose one: tea, coffee, milk, hot chocolate. Why do you choose it?
Coffee with cream and sugar. But again, I drink freshly ground dark French Roast. Oh I’m sorry, you asked why? I grew up with good coffee in the S.F. bay area, and I’ve learned coffee really is the cheapest beverage, aside from water, and I don’t like water as fish do things in it.

 

6.Do you have a close friend? Is there one thing that you can only do with that friend?
I am married to my bestest, closest friend, and the thing we do together, I am not allowed to publicly speak about!

 

7.What is your favourite book and why do you like it?
That’s a hard one, but I can safely say my nearly favorite book, if I can only name one is BattleField Earth, by L. Ron Hubbard. I like that it’s long and involved, even though some of it is rather childish, I enjoy humanity taking back their home, and making a difference out in the cosmos.

 

8.What do you really want to learn but you haven’t got the time to do it?
Everything! I want my education to always continue. Right now I want to learn how to make my site work for me. The part about not enough time, unfortunately takes presidence over everything.

 

9.What do you miss from your childhood?
I miss my mommy! She died when I was 9, and I had to grow up because of that.

 

10.Where will you go if you just feel bored at home?
I am not at home at present. In December, I had to come down here to Reno Nevada to help take care of my family. I don’t get bored at home, as I live on 20 acres, in the mountains, and if the trailer feels cramped I just go outside.

 

Now it’s time to make my own nominations for the LIEBSTER AWARD, so I hope I don’t lose any friends over this!
Random Musings And Wanderlust 
Bittersweet Sensations  babyruthbeer
https://girlonstreamblog.wordpress.com/

Dr. J M Landin @ RedNewtGallery

LIZZIE BRIGHT  @  http://lizziebright.com/
Victoria Iskak   @  Raindrops & Fireflies
Margaret  @  Suds & Kisses
mboki_m  @  learning web development

 

And now, finally I get to ask my nominees their most dreaded and difficult to answer, questions.

1) Now that you are here in the magical realm of the blogosphere, what do you want?

2) What is your inner animal?

3) On your blog, are you public, or private, in regard to your personal self?

4) Are you happy in your present place in this life?

5) If I could give you one wish, what would that be?

6) What would be your ideal job?

7) Do you have a favorite kind of pet?

8) Are you able to discuss, religion, politics, or feelings openly, with strangers?

9) Knowing what you know now, what would you have done differently, and of course, why?

10) How many fingers am I holding up?

I told you these would be formidable questions, even though I didn’t word it that way. I didn’t want to scare you away. And in advance, Thank You for playing, now take your dang football and go home!

2-28- Who Knows When?

1784 – John Wesley charters the Methodist Church.

photo-John Wesley

John Wesley

John Wesley was an Anglican divine and theologian who, with his brother Charles Wesley and fellow cleric George Whitefield, is credited with the foundation of the evangelical movement known as Methodism. His work and writings also played a leading role in the development of the Holiness movement and Pentecostalism.

 

 

1827 – The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad is incorporated, becoming the first railroad in America offering commercial transportation of both people and freight.

photo-B & O railroad

B & O railroad

 

photo-B & O Railroad 3

B & O Railroad 3

photo-B & O Railroad 2

B & O Railroad 2

 

 

1844 – A gun on USS Princeton explodes while the boat is on a Potomac River cruise, killing eight people, including two United States Cabinet members.The Princeton’s reputation in the Navy never recovered from a devastating incident early in her service.

photo- Princeton

Princeton

On February 28, 1844, during a Potomac River pleasure cruise and demonstration of her two heavy guns for dignitaries, one of the guns exploded and killed Secretary of State Abel P. Upshur, Secretary of the Navy Thomas Gilmer, and other high-ranking U.S. federal officials. President John Tyler barely escaped death in the incident.

 

 

photo-PRINCETON

PRINCETON

 

 

 

 

1849 – Regular steamboat service from the west to the east coast of the United States begins with the arrival of the SS California in San Francisco Bay, four months 22 days after leaving New York Harbor.
February 28 – Regular steamboat service from the west to the east coast of the United States begins with the arrival of the SS California in San Francisco Bay. The California leaves New York Harbor on October 6, 1848, rounds Cape Horn at the tip of South America, and arrives at San Francisco, California after the 4 month 21 day journey.

photo-SS CALIFORNIA

SS CALIFORNIA

 

photo-SS CALIFORNIA

SS CALIFORNIA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1883 – The first vaudeville theater opens in Boston

Benjamin Franklin Keith, “the father” of American Vaudeville.
1883 established his own museum in Boston featuring “Baby Alice the Midget Wonder” and other acts. His success in this endeavor allowed Keith to build the Bijou Theatre. The Bijou, a lavishly appointed, state-of-the-art, fireproof theatre, set the standard for the shape of things to come. At the Bijou, Keith established a “fixed policy of cleanliness and order.” He strictly forbade the use of vulgarity or coarse material in his acts “so the that the house and the entertainment would directly appeal to the support of women and children.

photo-1883 Vaudevillexroads.vir

1883 Vaudevillexroads.vir

 

 

1940 – Basketball is televised for the first time (Fordham University vs. the University of Pittsburgh in Madison Square Garden).
Back on February 28, 1940, W2XBS broadcast a men’s basketball doubleheader from Madison Square Garden. Fordham took on the University of Pittsburgh in the first game followed by a matchup between New York University and Georgetown University. Not many people watched the game as it was estimated that fewer than 400 television sets existed in New York City back then, when a top-of-the-line set, a Clifton, sold for about $600.

photo-First Basketball Broadcast

First Basketball Broadcast

The game didn’t go well for the Rams, who fell to the Panthers, 57-37, and the fact that it was televised was hardly news, not even getting a mention in The Ram’s coverage of the game. But many years later, no one can imagine television without college basketball.

photo-www.earlytelevision.org First color television set

http://www.earlytelevision.org First color television set

1954 – The first color television sets using the NTSC standard are offered for sale to the general public.
The first color system was developed by John Logie Baird in 1928. It used mechanical techniques. In the early 1940s, CBS pioneered a system which transmitted an image in each of the three primary colors sequentially. A wheel with segments of red, green, and blue rotated in front of the camera, while a similar wheel rotated in front of the television screen, synchronized to the one at the camera. The system was simple and produced excellent pictures, though it had many drawbacks, including low resolution, flicker, and most signifcant, it wasn’t compatible with existing black and white broadcasting.

 

 

1958 – A school bus in Floyd County, Kentucky hits a wrecker truck and plunges down an embankment into the rain-swollen Levisa Fork River. The driver and 26 children die in what remains one of the worst school bus accidents in U.S. history.
1958 floyd county bus crash darkest days in eastern Kentucky’s history

On a cold and cloudy morning, after a period of heavy rains and thaw, a Floyd County school bus loaded with 48 elementary and high school students bound for school in Prestonsburg, Kentucky on U.S. Route 23 struck the rear of a wrecker truck and plunged down an embankment and into the swollen waters of the Levisa Fork of the Big Sandy River, where it was swept downstream and submerged.

22 children escaped the bus in the first few minutes as it became fully submerged in the raging flood stage waters and made it safely out of the river. However, 26 other children and the bus driver drowned. National Guard and other authorities and agencies responded. The bus was finally located by Navy divers, and removed from the river 53 hours later.

1959 – Discoverer 1, an American spy satellite that is the first object intended to achieve a polar orbit, is launched. It failed to achieve orbit.
Discoverer 1, the first of a series of US satellites that were part of the Corona reconnaissance satellite program, launched on February 28, 1959.
While Discoverer 1 was a prototype KH-1 (Key Hole 1) spy satellite, it did not contain a camera or a film capsule as later such satellites did.

photo-Discovery 1

Discovery 1

Discoverer 1 launched on a Thor-Agena rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California and became the first man-made object ever put into a polar orbit. NASA reports that while difficulty was encountered receiving signals after launch, the satellite broadcast intermittently later in the flight.

1975 – In London an underground train fails to stop at Moorgate terminus station and crashes into the end of the tunnel, killing 43 people.
FEBRUARY 28, 1975: Forty-two Tube passengers were killed after their train failed to stop at Moorgate station in the worst ever crash on the London Underground on this day in 1975.

Driver Leslie Newson, 56, also died after ploughing – without any apparent reason – into a wall at the terminus of the Highbury branch of the Northern Line at 8.46am.
The force of the 30mph crash was so immense that it caused three carriages to completely crumble up and sever passengers’ limbs with twisted shards of steel.
https://uk.news.yahoo.com/-on-this-day–worst-ever-tube-disaster-as-43-die-in-moorgate-crash-172128948.html#dE5xXye

photo-Getty Images-Getty - The aftermath of a tube train crash

Getty Images-Getty – The aftermath of a tube train crash

A total of 74 people were hurt on the train, which was later found to have had no faults and appeared to speed up as it entered the station at the peak of rush hour.

 

1983 – The final episode of M*A*S*H airs Final Episode #TBT, with almost almost 106 million viewers. It still holds the record for the highest viewership of a season finale.

1991 – The first Gulf War ends.
Alternate title: Gulf War
Iraq WarWorld War IIYom Kippur WarArab LeagueOrganization of the Islamic Conference (OIC)Arab Bank for Economic Development in AfricaOrganization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC)World War I
Persian Gulf War, also called Gulf War, (1990–91), international conflict that was triggered by Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait on August 2, 1990. Iraq’s leader, Ṣaddām Ḥussein, ordered the invasion and occupation of Kuwait with the apparent aim of acquiring that nation’s large oil reserves, canceling a large debt Iraq owed Kuwait, and expanding Iraqi power in the region.

photo-www.britannica.com  Persian-Gulf-War.jpg 1

http://www.britannica.com Persian-Gulf-War.jpg 1

photo-www.britannica.com  Persian Gulf War 1

http://www.britannica.com Persian Gulf War 1

1993 – Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agents raid the Branch Davidian church in Waco, Texas with a warrant to arrest the group’s leader David Koresh. Four BATF agents and five Davidians die in the initial raid, starting a 51-day standoff.

photo-  Waco Texas

Waco Texas

On February 28, 1993, a gunfight erupted soon after federal law enforcement agents raided the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, in an attempt to investigate allegations of illegal weapons and child abuse. When the smoke cleared, four agents and six members of the religious sect were dead. Following a 51-day standoff, the authorities launched a new assault, this time with tear gas. Their plan backfired, however, when an out-of-control blaze, likely started by the Branch Davidians themselves, burned the complex down and claimed at least 75 lives, including those of 25 children. On the 20th anniversary of this tragic siege, take a look at where the key players are now. http://www.history.com/news/waco-20-years-later-where-are-they-now

1997 – An earthquake in northern Iran is responsible for about 3,000 deaths.

photo-Map of  Iran

Map of Iran

The earthquake occurred at 12:57 UTC (4:27 p.m. Iran Standard Time) and lasted for 15 seconds.[1] At least 1,100 people were killed, 2,600 injured, 36,000 homeless, 12,000 houses damaged or destroyed and 160,000 livestock killed in the Ardabil area of northwestern Iran. Severe damage was observed to roads, electrical power lines, communications and water distribution systems around Ardabil.[2] Hospitals and other medical buildings were overflowing with patients as a result of the earthquake. More than 83 villages experienced some form of damage.

1997 – GRB 970228, a highly luminous flash of gamma rays, strikes the Earth for 80 seconds, providing early evidence that gamma-ray bursts occur well beyond the Milky Way.

photo-Gamma ray burst

Gamma ray burst

The burst had multiple peaks in its light curve and lasted approximately 80 seconds. Peculiarities in the light curve of GRB 970228 suggested that a supernova may have occurred as well.

1998 – First flight of RQ-4 Global Hawk, the first unmanned aerial vehicle certified to file its own flight plans and fly regularly in U.S. civilian airspace.

photo-A maintenance crew preparing a Global Hawk at Beale Air Force Base

A maintenance crew preparing a Global Hawk at Beale Air Force Base


The Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) surveillance aircraft. It was initially designed by Ryan Aeronautical (now part of Northrop Grumman), and known as Tier II+ during development. In role and operational design, the Global Hawk is similar to the Lockheed U-2.
photo-A RQ-4A in U.S. Navy markings

A RQ-4A in U.S. Navy markings


photo-  RQ4

RQ4

The RQ-4 provides a broad overview and systematic surveillance using high-resolution synthetic aperture radar (SAR) and long-range electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) sensors with long loiter times over target areas. It can survey as much as 40,000 square miles (100,000 km2) of terrain a day.

photo-Photograph taken by US Navy Global Hawk with an aerial view of wildfires in Northern California, 2008

Photograph taken by US Navy Global Hawk with an aerial view of wildfires in Northern California, 2008

2001 – The Nisqually Earthquake measuring 6.8 on the Richter Scale hits the Nisqually Valley and the Seattle, Tacoma, and Olympia area of the U.S. state of Washington.
The Nisqually earthquake (also commonly referred to as “The Ash Wednesday Quake”) was an intraslab earthquake, occurring at 10:54 am PST (18:54 UTC) on February 28, 2001. One of the largest recorded earthquakes in Washington state history, it measured 6.8 on the moment magnitude scale and lasted approximately 45 seconds. The epicenter of the earthquake was Anderson Island, about 17 km (11 mi) northeast of Olympia.

The focus was at a depth of 52 km (32 mi). Tremors were felt as far away as Scio, Oregon, across the border in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and 175 mi (282 km) east in Pasco, Washington. There were also reports that it was felt as far away as Spokane, Washington and Sandpoint, Idaho

2004 – Over one million Taiwanese participating in the 228 Hand-in-Hand Rally form a 500-kilometre (310 mi) long human chain to commemorate the 228 Incident in 1947
The 228 Hand-in-Hand Rally (Chinese: 228百萬人手牽手護台灣; Pinyin: 228 Bǎiwànrén Shǒuqiān Shǒuhù Táiwān; meaning literally “228, one million people hand-in-hand to protect Taiwan” – 228 standing for February 28) was a demonstration in the form of a human chain held in Taiwan on February 28, 2004, the 57th anniversary of the 2/28 Incident.

photo-a-giâu - Own work

a-giâu – Own work


Approximately two million (estimation ranged from 1.9 to 2.3 million depending on the reporting media) Taiwanese formed a 500-kilometer (310 mi) long human chain, from the harbor at Keelung, Taiwan’s northernmost city, to its southern tip at Eluanbi, Pingtung County to commemorate the 228 Incident, to call for peace, and to protest the deployment of missiles by the People’s Republic of China aimed at Taiwan along the mainland coast.

2005 – A suicide bombing at a police recruiting centre in Al Hillah, Iraq kills 127.
The Al Hillah bombing killed 127 people, chiefly men lining up to join the Iraqi police forces, at the recruiting centre on February 28, 2005 in Al Hillah, Iraq.

February 28 – 127 Iraqis are killed by a suicide car bomb outside a medical center in Hilla, south of Baghdad. The bomber, who later turned out to be a U.S. educated Jordanian lawyer from al Qaeda targeted a large crowd of mainly teachers and police recruits outside a health clinic. It was the deadliest single blast in Iraq’s history.

2013 – Pope Benedict XVI resigns as the pope of the Catholic Church becoming the first pope to do so since 1415.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/pope-benedict-to-resign-citing-age-and-waning-energy/
LONDON — Citing failing strength of “mind and body,” Pope Benedict XVI stunned his closest aides and more than 1 billion Catholics by resigning on Monday, becoming the first pope to do so in nearly 600 years and ending the tenure of a formidable theologian who preached a gospel of conservative faith to a fast-changing world.

photo-Pope Benedict XVI

Pope Benedict XVI

In keeping with his reputation as a traditionalist, Pope Benedict delivered his resignation — effective Feb. 28 — in Latin, to a private church body in Vatican City. “I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me,” he said. “For this reason, and well aware of the seriousness of this act, with full freedom I declare that I renounce the ministry of bishop of Rome, successor of Saint Peter.”

photo-Pope Benedict XVI

Pope Benedict XVI

How Dark Matter Could Cause Mass Extinctions

http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/1261896-how-dark-matter-could-cause-mass-extinctions/?utm_source=Epoch10&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=8

photo The Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxy, visible in the upper right. (Andyspictures/Flickr via Wikimedia Commons

The Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxy, visible in the upper right. (Andyspictures/Flickr via Wikimedia Commons

The Earth’s infrequent but predictable path around and through our galaxy’s disc may have a direct and significant effect on geological and biological phenomena on Earth, according to new research.

 

 

In a new paper in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, New York University biology professor Michael Rampino concludes that movement through dark matter may perturb the orbits of comets and lead to additional heating in the Earth’s core, both of which could be connected with mass extinction events.

The galactic disc is the region of the Milky Way Galaxy where our solar system resides. It is crowded with stars and clouds of gas and dust, and also a concentration of elusive dark matter—small subatomic particles that can be detected only by their gravitational effects.

Previous studies have shown that Earth rotates around the disc-shaped galaxy once every 250 million years. But the Earth’s path around the galaxy is wavy, with the sun and planets weaving through the crowded disc approximately every 30 million years.

 

Dark Matter Inside the Earth

Analyzing the pattern of the Earth’s passes through the galactic disc, Rampino notes that these disc passages seem to correlate with times of comet impacts and mass extinctions of life. The famous comet strike 66 million ago that led to the extinction of the dinosaurs is just one example.

What causes this correlation between Earth’s passes through the galactic disc, and the impacts and extinctions that seem to follow?

This artist's impression of the Milky Way galaxy. The blue halo of material surrounding the galaxy indicates the expected distribution of the mysterious dark matter. (L. Calçada/ESO)

While traveling through the disc, the dark matter concentrated there disturbs the pathways of comets typically orbiting far from the Earth in the outer solar system, Rampino observes. This means that comets that would normally travel at great distances from the Earth instead take unusual paths, causing some of them to collide with the planet.

But even more remarkably, with each dip through the disc, the dark matter can apparently accumulate within the Earth’s core. Eventually, the dark matter particles annihilate each other, producing considerable heat.

The heat created by the annihilation of dark matter in Earth’s core could trigger events such as volcanic eruptions, mountain building, magnetic field reversals, and changes in sea level, which also show peaks every 30 million years.

Rampino therefore suggests that astrophysical phenomena derived from the Earth’s winding path through the galactic disc, and the consequent accumulation of dark matter in the planet’s interior, can result in dramatic changes in Earth’s geological and biological activity.

His model of dark matter interactions with the Earth as it cycles through the galaxy could have a broad impact on our understanding of the geological and biological development of Earth, as well as other planets within the galaxy.

“We are fortunate enough to live on a planet that is ideal for the development of complex life,” Rampino says. “But the history of the Earth is punctuated by large scale extinction events, some of which we struggle to explain.

“It may be that dark matter—the nature of which is still unclear but which makes up around a quarter of the universe—holds the answer. As well as being important on the largest scales, dark matter may have a direct influence on life on Earth.”

In the future, he suggests, geologists might incorporate these astrophysical findings in order to better understand events that are now thought to result purely from causes inherent to the Earth. This model, Rampino adds, likewise provides new knowledge of the possible distribution and behavior of dark matter within the galaxy.

Source: NYU. Originally published on Futurity.org

Methane explosion? Meteorite crater?

Methane explosion? Meteorite crater? Scientists baffled by gigantic 262ft hole that has appeared at Siberia’s ‘End of The World’

  • Enormous crater appears suddenly in part of Russia whose name translates as ‘the end of the world’
  • Teams of scientists are rushing east to fathom the cause of this unusual – and rare – geographical occurrence
  • One especially outlandish theory talks about a UFO landing as a possible cause of this colossal chasm in the earth

An urgent expedition will leave tomorrow to probe a giant crater that has appeared in gas-rich northern Siberia.

Extraordinary aerial images show a mysterious hole which experts say may be up to 262 feet wide, in the ,of northern Russia.

‘A scientific team has been sent to investigate the hole and is due to arrive at the scene on Wednesday,’ The Siberian Times has reported.

What on earth is it? This enormous hole has appeared in a remote corner of Russia - and scientists are searching for answers

What on earth is it? This enormous hole has appeared in a remote corner of Russia – and scientists are searching for answers

Opening up: The enormous crater could be caused by global warming, with gas exploding below the surface

Opening up: The enormous crater could be caused by global warming, with gas exploding below the surface

The cause of the hole’s sudden appearance in Yamal – which translates as ‘the end of the world’ – in the far north of Siberia is not yet known.

There has been web speculation about the crater indicating ‘the arrival of a UFO craft’.

But one Russian expert says the cause is more likely to be global warming releasing gases under the surface, which then explode like a champagne cork.

Experts say that the darkening around the inner rim of the crater indicates ‘severe burning’ which scorched its edges.

 

‘There is agreement that soil around the hole was thrown out of the crater, large enough for several Mi-8 helicopters to fly into it,’ The Siberian Times reported – before adding ‘not that they have.’

The expedition organised by the Yamal authorities includes experts from Russia’s Centre for the Study of the Arctic, and also the Cryosphere Institute of the Academy of Sciences.

Very remote: The crater has appeared in Yamal - a part of Siberia whose name translates as 'the end of the world'

Very remote: The crater has appeared in Yamal – a part of Siberia whose name translates as ‘the end of the world’

Search for answers: Expedition teams are on their way to the site, hoping to work out the cause of the crater

Search for answers: Expedition teams are on their way to the site, hoping to work out the cause of the crater

The mysterious hole is in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Region, some 20 miles from the Bovanenkovo gas field

The mysterious hole is in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Region, some 20 miles from the Bovanenkovo gas field

They plan to take samples of soil, air and water from the scene.

They will be accompanied by a specialist from Russia’s Emergencies Ministry.

A spokesman for the ministry’s Yamal branch has ruled out a meteorite, but says it is too early to say what caused the hole.

‘We can definitely say that it is not a meteorite,’ he says.

Dim and distant: Yamal is a corner of Russia far removed from the cities of St Petersburg and Moscow

Dim and distant: Yamal is a corner of Russia far removed from the cities of St Petersburg and Moscow

A place far far away: Yamal is is Russia's main production area for gas supplied to Europe

A place far far away: Yamal is is Russia’s main production area for gas supplied to Europe

Barren: Gas pipelines run through Yamal - but otherwise, in many places, there is little sign of life

Barren: Gas pipelines run through Yamal – but otherwise, in many places, there is little sign of life

Mysterious: One more outlandish theory suggests that the crater has been caused by the landing of a UFO

Mysterious: One more outlandish theory suggests that the crater has been caused by the landing of a UFO

Anna Kurchatova from the Sub-Arctic Scientific Research Centre, thinks the crater was formed by a mixture of water, salt and gas igniting an underground explosion, a result of global warming.

Gas accumulated in ice could have mixed with sand beneath the surface, and then mixed with salt.

Some 10,000 years ago this area was a sea.

Who knows? Scientists are hoping to announce their findings as to the cause of the hole in the next few days

Who knows? Scientists are hoping to announce their findings as to the cause of the hole in the next few days

Global warming may have caused an ‘alarming’ melt in the under-soil ice, released gas and causing an effect like the popping of a Champagne bottle cork, Ms Kurchatova suggests.

Yamal, a large peninsula jutting into Arctic waters, is Russia’s main production area for gas supplied to Europe.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-2693105/Giant-hole-appears-Siberia-Huge-crater-emerges-end-world.html#ixzz3SEqn0LaU
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GIANT HUMAN SKELETONS discovered at 7 separate gravesites!

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/12/071214-giant-skeleton.html

“Skeleton of Giant” Is Internet Photo Hoax
James Owen
for National Geographic News
December 14, 2007
The National Geographic Society has not discovered ancient giant humans, despite rampant reports and pictures.

The hoax began with a doctored photo and later found a receptive online audience—thanks perhaps to the image’s unintended religious connotations.

GIANT HUMAN SKELETONS discovered at 7 separate gravesites!

A digitally altered photograph created in 2002 shows a reclining giant surrounded by a wooden platform—with a shovel-wielding archaeologist thrown in for scale.

By 2004 the “discovery” was being blogged and emailed all over the world—”Giant Skeleton Unearthed!”—and it’s been enjoying a revival in 2007.

The photo fakery might be obvious to most people. But the tall tale refuses to lie down even five years later, if a continuing flow of emails to National Geographic News are any indication. (The National Geographic Society owns National Geographic News.)

The messages come from around the globe—Portugal, India, El Salvador, Malaysia, Africa, the Dominican Republic, Greece, Egypt, South Africa, Kenya. But they all ask the same question: Is it true?

Perpetuating the Myth

Helping to fuel the story’s recent resurgence are a smattering of media outlets that have reported the find as fact.

An often cited March 2007 article in India’s Hindu Voice monthly, for example, claimed that a National Geographic Society team, in collaboration with the Indian Army, had dug up a giant human skeleton in India.

“Recent exploration activity in the northern region of India uncovered a skeletal remains of a human of phenomenal size,” the report read.

The story went on to say the discovery was made by a “National Geographic Team (India Division) with support from the Indian Army since the area comes under jurisdiction of the Army.”

The account added that the team also found tablets with inscriptions that suggest the giant belonged to a race of superhumans that are mentioned in the Mahabharata, a Hindu epic poem from about 200 B.C.

“They were very tall, big and very powerful, such that they could put their arms around a tree trunk and uproot it,” the report said, repeating claims that initially appeared in 2004.

Voice editor P. Deivamuthu admitted to National Geographic News that his publication was taken in by the fake reports.

The monthly, which is based in Mumbai (Bombay), published a retraction after readers alerted Deivamuthu to the hoax, he said.

“We are against spreading lies and canards,” Deivamuthu added. “Moreover, our readers are a highly intellectual class and will not brook any nonsense.”

Other blog entries—such as a May 2007 posting on a site called Srini’s Weblog—cite a report supposedly published in the Times of India on April 22, 2004. But a search of that newspaper’s archive revealed no such article.

Arabian Giant

Variations of the giant photo hoax include alleged discovery of a 60- to 80-foot long (18- to 24-meter) human skeleton in Saudi Arabia. In one popular take, which likewise first surfaced in 2004, an oil-exploration team is said to have made the find.

Here the skeleton is held up as evidence of giants mentioned in Islamic, rather than Hindu, scriptures.

The Debunkers

Web sites dedicated to debunking urban legends and “netlore” picked up on the various giant hoaxes soon after they first appeared.

California-based Snopes.com, for example, noted that the skeleton image had been lifted from Worth1000, which hosts photo-manipulation competitions.

Titled “Giants,” the skeleton-and-shoveler picture had won third place in a 2002 contest called “Archaeological Anomalies 2.”

The image’s creator—an illustrator from Canada who goes by the screen name IronKite—told National Geographic News via email that he had had nothing to do with the subsequent hoax.

He added that he wants to remain anonymous because some forums that debated whether the giant was genuine or not “were turning their entire argument into a religious one.” It was argued, for instance, that the Saudi Arabian find was entirely consistent with the teachings of the Koran.

“This was about the same time that death threats and cash bounties were being issued against cartoonists and other industry professionals for doing things like depicting the Prophet Mohammed,” IronKite wrote.

How the Image Was Made

IronKite started with an aerial photo of a mastodon excavation in Hyde Park, New York, in 2000. He then digitally superimposed a human skeleton over the beast’s remains.

The later addition of a digging man presented the biggest technical challenge.

“If you look, he’s holding a yellow-handled shovel, but there’s nothing on the end,” IronKite said.

“Originally, the spade end was there. But [it] looked like it was occupying the exact same space as the skeleton’s temple, making the whole thing look fake.

“Now it looks like he’s just holding a stick, and people don’t notice. It’s funny.”

IronKite also altered the color of the man’s clothing to create a “uniform tie-in” with the white-shirted observer peering down from the wooden platform.

The two figures work to exaggerate the scale of the skeleton, he added.

(Related: “Shark ‘Photo of the Year’ Is E-Mail Hoax” [March 8, 2005].)

IronKite said he’s tickled that the picture—which took only about an hour and a half to create—has generated so much Internet attention.

“I laugh myself silly when some guy claims to know someone who was there, or even goes so far as to claim that he or she was there when they found the skeleton and took the picture,” IronKite said.

“Sometimes people seem so desperate to believe in something that they lie to themselves, or exaggerate in order to make their own argument stronger.”

Wanting to Believe

David Mikkelson of Snopes.com said such hoaxes succeed when they seem to confirm something people are already inclined to believe, such as a prejudice, political viewpoint, or religious belief.

A hoax also needs to be presented “in a framework that has the appearance of credibility,” he said in an email.

The “ancient giant” has both elements, according to Mikkelson.

“It appeals to both a religious and a secular vision of the world as different and more fantastic than mere science would lead us to believe,” he said.

“Proof,” Mikkelson added, “comes in the form of a fairly convincing image.”

For anyone who may have knowingly propagated the myth, Mikkelson added, the motivation “probably wasn’t any different than the motivation for engaging in a game of ringing someone’s doorbell and running away—because it’s an easy way to have a laugh at someone else’s expense.”

Alex Boese, “curator” of the virtual Museum of Hoaxes, said fake giants have a long history going back to the at least the 1700s.

The recent hoax is reminiscent of the once famous Cardiff Giant myth, involving a ten-foot-tall (three-meter) stone figure dug up in 1869 in Cardiff, New York, Boese said.

Many people believed the figure was a petrified man and claimed he was one of the giants mentioned in the Bible’s Book of Genesis: “There were giants in the Earth in those days.”

Likewise, Boese said, the recent giant hoax “taps into people’s desire for mystery and their desire to see concrete confirmation of religious legends.”

National Geographic News photo editor Sebastian John contributed to this report.

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SOURCES AND RELATED WEB SITES
Hindu Voice
Worth1000
Snopes.com
IronKite’s Home
Museum of Hoaxes

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/12/071214-giant-skeleton_2.html

Klerksdorp Spheres

Klerksdorp Spheres are “out of place” artifacts, found in sedimentary rock, in a coal / diamond mine near Ottosdal, South Africa. It is believed these objects are up to 3.8 billion years old. These objects are spherical/ovoid shaped — similar to how planets like Earth or Jupiter are “squished”.
http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/704738-2-8-billion-year-old-spheres-found-in-south-africa-how-were-they-made/
Spheres found in the mines of South Africa have piqued the curiosity of researchers for decades. The spheres appear to be about 2.8 billion years old, with a very hard surface and a fibrous structure inside.
They are found in pyrophyllite, which is mined near the little town of Ottosdal in the Western Transvaal. This pyrophyllite … is a quite soft secondary mineral with a count of only 3 on the Mohs scale [a scale of 1 to 10 to rank the hardness of minerals] and was formed by sedimentation about 2.8 billion years ago.
The globes are very hard and cannot be scratched, even by steel. some are so balanced in shape and proportion, and the grooves around them look so straight and hand-carved, it seems unlikely they were naturally formed.
One of the spheres was tested at the California Space Institute, and scientists concluded that its balance “is so fine, it exceeded the limit of their measuring technology.” It was “within one-hundred thousandths of an inch from absolute perfection.”