Visit to learn more about the Space Education Centers in Utah. Visit and for information on joining a simulator based school space and science club.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Answers to Your Questions. The Sun's Magnetic Field is Changing. Japan Launches Robot into Space. Could We Build Elysium? The Imaginarium

Hello Troops,
We start today's post with answers to questions sent in by our readers.
Question 1: 
what universe is farpoint going to be in? It seems the star trek universe is dyeing off with only one space center still supporting it :( 
     I too am a huge fan of Star Trek, which is why my space center at Central School was set in the Star Trek universe.  I have different goals for Farpoint.  Farpoint needs a different universe from which we can build a good solid curriculum to enhance student learning.  We want to take our curriculum and use it in other schools.  We couldn't do that with Star Trek because of copyright issues.  
     Do I wish we could build Farpoint in the Star Trek universe?  Yes.  Will the new universe be as good.  Of course, we have a great team of sci-fi nerds (like myself) working on it.  I think you'll be pleased.  

Question 2: 
I noticed in one of your recent posts that you used the new logo for Farpoint that I had posted about. I just posted a little bit more about the design choices I made, and I posted a few resources just in case you want to recreate my work for Farpoint. Feel free. :)
I'm curious to know what you think about it. Thanks for at least paying attention! 
Dear person who asked Question 2.  You didn't include your name or an email address so I'm writing a response to your comments here.  You did a great job with the demo Troubadour site.  I like much of what you've done. 
The one downside is the title photos.  I enjoy The Troubadour's title photos.  I enjoy changing them on a regular basis. Other than that, I think your blog suggestion is plausible.  Let's see what others think of it.

Do You have this Young Man's Drive? It's needed for Today's economy.

This is an example of putting yourself out there to get what you're looking for.  Would I hire this young man?  Maybe, if his qualifications and skills were useful to me.  But, he definitely would get me to stop and talk to him strictly out of admiration of what he's doing.  It shows self confidence, guts and tenacity; which is one reason why I always try to buy something from the valley's young entrepreneurs and their roadside lemonade stands.    

A tipster sent us this photo of an enterprising young man outside the Battery Park ferry terminal near Goldman Sachs and the NYMEX giving out free donuts and coffee so he can get hired. 
His name is Michael Penn and he's 23 years old. 
We caught up with Penn over the phone moments ago.
He told us that he wants to get into the investment banking industry in any type of business development role.  Read More

Space and Science News

Meet Kirobo: Man's new best friend?
     On Saturday, August 4th, Japan launched a standard rocket to deliver supplies and equipment to astronauts on board the International Space Station (ISS). But this rocket also carried a very non-standard piece of kit...
     Enter Kirobo.
     Kirobo is approximately 0.34m tall, weighs 1kg and speaks Japanese. Yep, you read that correctly. This is part of the Kibo Robo Project, Japan's mission to create a robot which can interact with humans in space. "I want to help create a world where humans and robots can live together," the diminutive figure stated at a press release in June. Hardly Skynet.
     Kirobo is also not alone. There is also a ground based back-up called Mirata who, like Kirobo, was built by the University of Tokyo's Research Centre for Advanced Science and Technology.
     Both robots are equipped with voice and facial recognition technologies in addition to cutting edge emotional recognition software. They represent the latest in the search for Artificial Intelligence and are also avatars of Hope for long missions where the psychological state of human crew members could be harmed by prolonged periods of solitude.
     Kirobo, a merging of robot and the Japanese word for "hope", will serve as a friend and partner to Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata, who will join the ISS in November.

- Samuel  (
From From Quarks to Quasars)
Jupiter, as Envisioned from Europa

     The top priority of a robotic lander mission to Jupiter's potentially life-supporting moon Europa should be investigating the composition and chemistry of its subsurface ocean, scientists say.
     Such a mission should also aim to determine the thickness and dynamics of the moon's ice shell and characterize the surface geology of Europa in detail, a NASA-appointed "science definition team" reports in a new study in the journal Astrobiology.
     "If one day humans send a robotic lander to the surface of Europa, we need to know what to look for and what tools it should carry," study lead author Robert Pappalardo, of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., said in a statement. [Photos: Europa, Mysterious Icy Moon of Jupiter]
Read More

Shark Week on Discovery 

     Shark Week is an annual event hosted by the Discovery Channel. During this week, they air a lot of incredible documentaries about Sharks (obviously). This year, the event began on August 4th and will continue until August 11th (I usually forget all about it until its almost over, hence the reminder). 

Elysium Starts Friday.  Could a Real Elysium be Built?  

     In the new movie "Elysium," Earth is beyond repair, and the rich and powerful have decided to leave it behind.
     Instead of three to six highly trained astronauts circling the Earth in an orbiting laboratory as there are today, the Elysium space station serves as an oasis for those that can afford it. In the film, humanity has developed a large, rotating space station above a dystopic Earth by the year 2154. The station comes stocked with mansions, grass, trees, water and gravity.
     Although that kind of brave new world might sound far-fetched, the space station's design — and the science behind it — isn't. [See photos from the movie "Elysium"]

The Sun's Magnetic Field Is About to Reverse

     Something big is about to happen on the sun. According to measurements from NASA-supported observatories, the sun’s vast magnetic field is about to flip.   
     “It looks like we’re no more than three to four months away from a complete field reversal,” said solar physicist Todd Hoeksema of Stanford University. “This change will have ripple effects throughout the solar system.”  
     The sun’s magnetic field changes polarity approximately every 11 years. It happens at the peak of each solar cycle as the sun’s inner magnetic dynamo re-organizes itself. The coming reversal will mark the midpoint of Solar Cycle 24. Half of “solar max” will be behind us, with half yet to come.
The Imaginarium
Take one pound of ordinary, add creativity and imagination and presto, you have Extraordinary!

Marissa put me on to these

Awesome.  Not a care was given.

Can't afford a desk?
You can always afford cardboard!

Legos Pool

House boat


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