Monday Links from the Bank Holiday Shelter on the Promenade  vol. CCCLXXXVII Monday Links from the Bank Holiday Shelter on the Promenade vol. CCCLXXXVII
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    Default Monday Links from the Bank Holiday Shelter on the Promenade vol. CCCLXXXVII

    Tear yourself away from watching that solitary person walking their dog along the beach through your B&B's rain-streaked window, and read this lot instead

    • The Curious Case of the Disappearing Nuts - Nuts are big business in California, and criminal cartels are moving in: ”The man tasked with finding missing nuts in Tulare County is sheriff Mike Boudreaux, and in 2015 he faced a growing problem. That year, thieves had stolen six shipments, valued at $1.6 million, from area processors… Boudreaux said nut theft had outstripped drug crime as his top priority and promised an aggressive investigation. Shortly after the conference got under way, news arrived that another processor in Tulare had been hit.”

    • Can We Hear It Back Now? - To mark last Friday’s fiftieth anniversary of the release of Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Tim Worthington uncovers a seldom-remembered story about the recording of the album: ”Carnival Of Light is probably the most obscure track The Beatles ever recorded. Specifically created for a live art installation, it was heard twice in public and has never resurfaced. Not even on the newly-released Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band 'Sessions' box set, despite that being precisely where and when it was put down on tape. You could be forgiven for assuming that it's just an unimportant studio offcut and that if it was of any point or value whatsoever we'd have heard it by now. You'd be wrong, though, as it's also the subject of one of the most interesting stories in the Beatles' entire history.”

    • Can You Say...Hero? - A touching 1998 profile of the American children’s entertainer Mister Rogers: ”Then the car stopped on Thirty-fourth Street, in front of the escalators leading down to the station, and when the doors opened—"Holy tulip! It's Mister ******* Rogers!"—he turned into Mister ******* Rogers. This was not a bad thing, however, because he was in New York, and in New York it's not an insult to be called Mister ******* Anything. In fact, it's an honorific… Oh, Margy Whitmer tried to keep people away from him, tried to tell people that if they gave her their names and addresses, Mister Rogers would send them an autographed picture, but every time she turned around, there was Mister Rogers putting his arms around someone, or wiping the tears off someone's cheek, or passing around the picture of someone's child, or getting on his knees to talk to a child. Margy couldn't stop them, and she couldn't stop him. "Oh, Mister Rogers, thank you for my childhood." "Oh, Mister Rogers, you're the father I never had." "Oh, Mister Rogers, would you please just hug me?" After a while, Margy just rolled her eyes and gave up, because it's always like this with Mister Rogers.”

    • How an Ancient Supernova Turned the Sky on Earth Electric Blue - "When it comes to getting the most bang for your buck in terms of doomsday scenarios—like a 2012-style runaway environmental catastrophe or a lethal airborne virus—not much beats the idea of Earth turning into a giant popcorn kernel when faced with the enormous destructive power of a supernova… We know this because new research shows how, throughout its history, Earth was buffeted by the remnants of supernovae, causing tumultuous changes in the chemistry of our planet and affecting the development of life.”

    • Fun with a new data set: Chang'e 3 lander and Yutu rover camera data - Emily Lakdawalla: ”In a recent guest blog post, Quanzhi Ye pointed to the Chinese version of the Planetary Data System, and shared the great news that Chang'e 3 lander data are now public. The website is a little bit difficult to use, but last week I managed to download all of the data from two of the cameras -- a total of 35 Gigabytes of data!… without further ado, here, for the first time in a format easily accessible to the public, are hundreds and hundreds of science-quality images from the Chang'e 3 lander and Yutu rover.”

    • Children of the ‘80s Never Fear: Video Games Did Not Ruin Your Life - Michale Z. Newman looks back at the early 1980s media panic about video games: ”There is a particularly American tradition of becoming enthralled with new technologies of communication, identifying their promise of future prosperity and renewed community. It is matched by a related American tradition of freaking out about the same objects, which are also figured as threats to life as we know it.”

    • Fallout Bunker Burials - Robyn Lacy on the tricky question of what to do with people who die in your fallout shelter: ”The Central Emergency Government Headquarters, or the ‘Diefenbunker’ was constructed in the 1950s to protect Canada’s top political and military leaders in the event of a nuclear fallout during the Cold War… Picture that for a moment, 565 people crammed into a building, not allowed to go outside for an entire month. What if you had been exposed to the radiation before you managed to get inside the bunker? What if you got sick from the exposure, and two weeks in a containment room weren’t enough to save you? What if you died in the bunker? The designers of the bunkers had thought of that!”

    • Alpha (A translation of Genesis 1) - The first chapter of Genesis using only words beginning with ‘A’: "And Almighty asked," Appear." And all appeared aglow."

    • How the transgenic petunia carnage of 2017 began - First they came for the flowers… ”Two years ago, plant biologist Teemu Teeri was walking by a train station in Helsinki when he noticed some vivid orange petunias in a planter. The flowers reminded Teeri, who has studied plant pigments at the University of Helsinki, of blooms created in a landmark gene-engineering experiment some 30 years earlier… Now, that chance encounter has ended up forcing flower sellers on two continents to destroy vast numbers of petunias.”

    • A World Without People - A gallery of abandoned places. This is a Trident airliner in Cyprus’s Nicosia International Airport, abandoned after the war of 1974:

    Happy invoicing!

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