Over 130 stars have been shown to have orbiting planets during the last years. Their presences are basically detected in two ways: either by a slight wobble in the star positions due to gravity or a variation in intensity as the planet pass in front of the star. However, there has been no actual light detection of any extra-solar planet, a visual confirmation of sorts. Until now.
Entries of year 2005
One of my favorite writers on the web, Jason Kottke, has recently decided to quit his daytime job and focus on writing for his site kottke.org. This is a bold step and should be encouraged. He’s asking for donations to make this possible.
Today there was an announcement from Bill Gates that the next version of Internet Explorer would not wait for the release of Longhorn. For me, this was kind of unexpected, judging from the previous Microsoft stand. Perhaps the sound of the Firefox download avalanche reached even the soundproof mansions at Redmond?
Finally it’s time for the 29th Göteborg Film Festival! Me and the love started with a humble booking of six movies this time, but judging from past years there will be additional bookings as soon as the first buzz reviews reaches my pointy ears.
Finally the nominees for the 2005 Razzie Awards are in! This is often more interesting than the more well-known rub-my-back-evening (a.k.a. Academy Award Oscars). A few of them were really obvious, such as Schwarzenegger’s Worst Supporting Actor for Around the world in 80 days (read my review for the full story on that awfully mis-casted scene).
The success of Huygens landing on Titan, as mentioned in The secrets of Titan, is like a Christmas gift for scientists all over the world. However, not everyone is leaping with joy. David Atkinson is a scientist at the University of Idaho. He has spent 18 years of his life designing an experiment for measuring the winds of Titan.
Today the world’s minds focused on ESA’s tiny probe Huygens, about to start it’s lonely descent into the dense atmosphere of Titan in just a few hours, the most distant landing ever attempted. The data will relayed to NASA’s orbiting spacecraft Cassini and then it takes about one hour for the information to reach Earth. Even though it’s main mission is to analyze the atmosphere composition, Titan being the only moon in the solar system with an atmosphere, the most tickling thought is what will happen when it tries to land on the surface.
Sorry, this is not an entry dissecting the movie Gladiator, but there is a sort of connection. Every day millions of people write about very personal issues on the public internet. Their dreams, joys and sorrows – all in a splendid mix of human expressions. People have been keeping daily diaries and emotional journals for as long as the discovery of writing, but diaries with a potential audience of five billion readers is a phenomenon that was quite uncommon prior to the advent of the hypertext browsers a decade ago.
After the great movie year of 2004, what do we see at the horizon?