Harmony-of -the- Worlds



Very important

Look at the pure joy on these children’s faces.



I honestly think people forget that the church and state are supposed to be separate. Give me one non-religious reason against same sex marriage. One non-religious reason against stem cell research. One non-religious reason against safe abortions. Go ahead.

Absolutely. No one should suffer because of the delusions some people have. It’s elementary.

❝ All science asks is to employ the same levels of skepticism we use in buying a used car or in judging the quality of analgesics or beer from their television commercials. ❞

- Carl Sagan (via whats-out-there)


Solar observing today. Barely a sunspot in sight!

(Usual warning about the dangers of observing the Sun: make sure you have the right equipment - in my case a solar filter for the front of my ‘scope - and know how to use it).


The oldest living thing in the world: These actinobacteria, recovered from the subterranean brrrrr-osphere that is Siberian permafrost, are estimated to be 500,000 years old. While many ancient microbes have been revived from ancient dormant states, these bacterial cells have been continuously living for half a million years. It’s known that the bacteria aren’t mobile in the frozen Earth, so by radioactively dating the layers of soil around the microbes, scientists were able to estimate their age.

Unable to divide and reproduce, these microbes were shown to be actively repairing their DNA despite the frigid temperatures, their enzymes uniquely adapted to an environment that would mean certain death for perhaps every other creature on Earth. While not growing, moving, or reproducing, this sort of cryostasis counts as living if you ask me (and the scientists who study them).

What do you think this means for the possibility of life on other planets?

(via Rachel Sussman and Brain Pickings. Check out the original 2007 research paper here)

is it just me, or are most atheist vloggers (or whatever the fuck they’re called) annoying as hell?? like all they do is bitch and complain about totally irrelevant shit. and then they think they’re victims of racism or sexism and stuff like that. idk they just really piss me off. and I can’t believe a news channel had the audacity to have the amazingly-visually-grotesque atheist on their show as a rep for atheists. just disgusting.

❝ So far as I can remember, there is not one word in the gospels in praise of intelligence. ❞

- Bertrand Russell (via whats-out-there)


Scientist George Washington Carver in his laboratory at Tuskegee Institute, Alabama. (New York Public Library)


The crisis in Gaza is so serious, it can be seen from space

International Space Station astronaut Alexander Gerst has posted his “saddest photo yet.” From all the way up in the thermosphere, ISS personnel orbiting 200 miles over the Middle East can see bombs and missiles exploding in Gaza and Israel as the two sides go to war.

Detailed explanation of the photo | Follow micdotcom 

❝ Science invites us to let the facts in, even when they don’t conform to our preconceptions. It urges us on a delicate balance between no-holds-barred openness to new ideas, however heretical, and the most rigorous skeptical scrutiny of everything. ❞

- Carl Sagan (via whats-out-there)


Fantastic New Yorker profile of Brian Eno. Also see his Oblique Strategies, Eno’s creativity prompts from the 1970s, mentioned in the first paragraph of the piece. 

It’s interesting to consider the parallels with science, where not-knowing is also the building block of “composition,” or progress. 


black excellence

For his experiment, Stonewall injected a special high concentration of cancer-treating drug mitoxantrone into younger and older mice. He then injected the mice with aggressive colon cancer cells. After three days, Stonewall noticed that his experimental vaccine was 100% effective on young mice — their tumors were gone and they showed immunity to colon cancer. But the older mice were still afflicted by the cancer cells.

His lab director at Rush University, Carl Ruby, said that Stonewall’s experiment helped scientists realize that they needed a special vaccine for older subjects.

The teen “should be heralded for helping to develop more effective colon cancer treatments that will impact the elderly, the population that is most susceptible to colon cancer,” Ruby told DNAInfo. “He has all the tools. He will go far.” (via the Daily News)


More science quotes here