Posted in aerospace, engineering

Graffiti master KATSU shows street artists how the craft can reach new heights

Following the recent vandal attack on Kendell Jenner’s six-story Calvin Klein Jeans billboard, situated atop a building at the intersection of Lafayette and East Houston St, the perpetrator has unmasked himself as none other than KATSU, the prolific graffiti mastermind notorious for his deviant marriage of art and technology. What more, KATSU has decided to release his newest mischief maker, the very one used to deface the Jenner billboard, out into the public: you too can be a proud owner of the ICARUS ONE, the world’s first open-source paint drone!

more via News Platform is First Runner-Up in IBM Watson x PSFK Good Data Contest.

Posted in aerospace, biology, earth sciences, electronic imaging and displays, medical imaging, Optics

2014 Art of Science Competition Winners: Photos : Discovery News

Some really amazing photos in this year’s batch:

The Princeton University’s “Art of Science” exhibition displays the work of Princetonians past and present that highlights the interplay between art and science. Its entries are chosen for their aesthetics as well as the scientific or technical interest they may hold.This year’s was the seventh Princeton University Art of Science competition. Let’s take a look at the top three winners in the contest, as well as the “People’s Choice” winner and some other dazzling works. We’ll also hear from the artists via comments they made about the works they created.”Watermark,” from postdoctoral researcher Sara Sadr, was this year’s first-place winner shown above. The pattern in the image was created by water moving back and forth on the Atlantic coast. “As a hydrologist, I am fascinated by the natural phenomena of our beautiful planet,” notes Sadr. “The way water in this picture found its way back to the ocean reminded me of a peacock’s tail spreading under the sun, or a woman’s hair blowing in the wind.”

more via 2014 Art of Science Competition Winners: Photos : Discovery News.

Posted in aerospace, astronomy, chemistry, physics

A NASA Engineer Turned Artist Whose Canvas Is a Huge Fish Tank | Design | WIRED

Have you ever been mesmerized by the swirling of the milk in your coffee (or is that just me pre-caffeinated)? Well, that phenomenon at least is interesting to one other person, Kim Keever.

Artist Kim Keever is like a hydroponic Jackson Pollock. Instead of a canvas, though, he drizzles paint into a 200-gallon fishtank.Keever is reticent to share the secrets of his process, but says that after the Sears Easy Living paints are added to the tank, he has anywhere from five to 20 minutes before the liquids diffuse, leaving 200-gallons of murky brown water in their wake. In the moments where the colors whirl and eddy, Keever shoots thousands of photos, choosing one or two before embarking on the five hour processes of emptying, cleaning, and refilling the tank so he can start anew. “They only need to hold up for that ephemeral moment, and then it doesn’t matter,” he says. “Whatever impermanence exists in the materials is irrelevant once the photo is captured.”Keever’s dabblings in acquatic abstract expressionism are a far cry from his rigid college days, where he studied engineering. During summers, he’d intern at NASA, where he worked on missile skin technology and jet nozzles. He had the grades and work ethic to thrive at the space agency and envisioned a career dedicated to improving booster engines, followed by a creative retirement filled with art making. Ultimately, he traded in his slide rule for a low-rent loft in the East Village of New York City.Keever began his art career in the New York City of the 1970s, surrounded by the weirdo glamor of Warhol’s Studio, the emerging art of subway graffiti, and the novel sounds of Grandmaster Flash and disco. He spent nearly two decades as a traditional painter and printmaker until he discovered the style and subject that would become his trademark in 1991.

more via A NASA Engineer Turned Artist Whose Canvas Is a Huge Fish Tank | Design | WIRED.

Posted in aerospace, astronomy, biology, communication and networking, education, electronic imaging and displays, museum, Optics

3D museums coming soon, says astrophysicist

Neil deGrasse Tyson siging a copy of his book ...
Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson believes 3D museums aren't far off. Image via Wikipedia

Pointed out to me by friends at SPIE:

How would you like to walk among the stars without ever leaving Earth? Or cavort among the molecules, get close up to cells or rub shoulders with lions, tigers and bears?

Museumgoers of the future could do all this — possibly within five years — thanks to cutting-edge technology that offers visitors high-quality “3-D vision” without the usual cumbersome goggles.

Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of New York’s Hayden Planetarium, believes such technology, which has the potential to turn an afternoon at the museum into a multisensory, memorable educational event, may be one of the hallmarks of such institutions as they move into 21st century.

Tyson, two-time appointee to presidential space commissions, author of nine books and, per People magazine, the sexiest living astrophysicist, will be keynote speaker at Wednesday’s session of the American Association of Museums convention at the George R. Brown Convention Center.

“They’ll be walking among the lions, and it’s not limited to lions. There will be stars and galaxies. They can walk among the stars. We can project the International Space Station on the dome … and they can go check it out, watch a 3-D space walk in progress.”

Posted in aerospace, astronomy, biology, communication and networking, electronic imaging and displays, engineering, medical imaging

$10 Million X-Prize for team who develops working Tricorder


I LOVE when Science Fiction becomes Science Fact! I was also a huge fan of Star Trek as a kid, so the idea that the Tricorder could become a reality is really exciting to me:

Wireless company Qualcomm has joined forces with the X-Prize Foundation to sponsor an X-Prize to create the first functional tricorder.

The tricorder, for the non-geek reader of ReadWriteWeb (is there such at thing?) is the handheld computer used by medical professionals and science officers to do non-invasive scanning on the Star Trek television shows. The prize will focus on the medical applications of this fictional device.

more via $10 Million Tricorder X-Prize.

Posted in aerospace, communication and networking, electronic imaging and displays

20 Stunning Shots of Earth From Space in Honor of Earth Day

Happy Earth Day from me and National Geographic!

To celebrate Earth Day, National Geographic photo editors selected 20 of the most stunning pictures of Earth, as seen from space…

Captured in 2000 by a NASA satellite, the scene shows where the salty waters of the Mozambique Channel mingle with freshwater outflow from the island’s Betsiboka River. Bombetoka Bay is home to some of Madagascar’s largest mangrove forests, which provide shelter for diverse mollusks and crustaceans as well as habitat for sea turtles, water birds, and dugongs.

check out all 20 via Earth Day Pictures: 20 Stunning Shots of Earth From Space.

Posted in aerospace, communication and networking, education, engineering, Illumination, Optics

Patents make good coloring books

Thanks to Maggie Koerth-Baker on Boing Boing for pointing this out:

You know, I hadn’t thought much about it before, but Christopher Mims is right—Patent illustrations can make GREAT coloring books. If I didn’t have work to do, I’d print out this sad-looking robot and color him up right now. And check out [the] Space Monkey!

In a way this reminds me a lot of those anatomy or biology coloring books they handed out to us in high school science class, with the idea that we’d learn the names of cells and membranes better if we had to stare at them while we colored them in. As far as “for fun,” I never had the patience to color in the really detailed illustrations, I think the Jumping Snail is more my speed (get it?! ha ha). But it’s a great idea for an emergency kids’ activity, or if you need to learn all the different components of a patent-pending robot.