Sharks coach provides an update on Erik Karlsson’s health

first_imgDETROIT — Erik Karlsson will be sidelined for the Sharks tilt with the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday. His status beyond Sunday’s game is unclear at this point.Karlsson sat out for the last 33:04 of Saturday’s 4-0 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets after re-tweaking a groin injury that recently sidelined him for nine games. Despite the setback, head coach Pete DeBoer expressed optimism about Karlsson’s health prior to Sunday’s game.“I don’t think it’s serious, but not playing today,” the Sharks …last_img

Giants to carry three catchers after adding Stephen Vogt to roster

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO — The Giants have a new position player arriving at Oracle Park Wednesday and they’ll have a new starting pitcher joining the club in Cincinnati on Friday. For a team that finished the month of April six games under .500 and 7.0 games out in the National League West, additional changes are on the way.Shortly after the Giants announced the promotion of catcher Stephen Vogt from Triple-A Sacramento, manager Bruce Bochy revealed that right-hander Tyler Beede will start Friday’s …last_img

Takeaways: Giants’ rookies make an impact in MLB debuts

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO — The Giants have some banged up players right now. Alex Dickerson’s back is bothering him. Brandon Belt’s knee isn’t fully healthy. Others have the type of aches and pains usually associated with suiting up nearly every day for close to four months.It all feels better after a win, though. And after their third extra-inning victory in four days Sunday, this one courtesy of Mike Yastrzemski’s solo home run in the bottom of the 12th inning, the Giants remain 2 1/2 games back of the …last_img

Things in Space that Shouldn’t Be

first_imgA history of astronomy and a history of surprise discoveries in space would track pretty well.  Recent stories show that the trend continues even today.Wet moon:  The moon was thought to be depleted of volatiles – until now.  According to PhysOrg, “Researchers discover water on the moon is widespread, similar to Earth’s.”  Shouldn’t all this have been known since the Apollo astronauts brought back rocks from the moon?  Well, researchers at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville have re-analyzed some samples and are “once again turning what scientists thought they knew about the moon on its head,” the article exclaimed.    They don’t mean they found lakes and oceans there (despite the Latin root for Mare, ocean).  Instead, they detected molecular water elements or “lunar dew” in apatite similar to amounts in Earth basalts.  Their paper, published in Nature,1 said, “Here we report quantitative ion microprobe measurements of late-stage apatite from lunar basalt 14053 that document concentrations of H, Cl and S that are indistinguishable from apatites in common terrestrial igneous rocks.”    What does this mean?  “One possible implication,” the abstract stated, “is that portions of the lunar mantle or crust are more volatile-rich than previously thought.”  And if volatiles are rich, the leading theory for the moon’s formation becomes poor.  PhysOrg explained:The finding of volatiles on the moon has deep implications for how it, and the Earth, formed.  It is generally believed that the moon was created when the early Earth was hit by a Mars-sized proto-planet called Theia, melting and vaporizing itself and a large chunk of the Earth.  The cloud of particles created by the impact later congealed to form the moon, which supposedly was devoid of highly volatile elements such as hydrogen and chlorine.  However, the researchers’ discovery of these volatiles challenges this theory.    “If water in the Moon was residue water kept during the giant impact, it is surprising that water survived the impact at all because less volatile elements, such as sodium and potassium, are strongly depleted.  The details of the impact theory need to be re-examined,’ [Yang] Liu [U Tennessee] said.Theia appears poised to join Nemesis in the arsenal of imaginary terrorists (see 07/21/2010).Mercurial sleeper awakes:  “Every time we’ve encountered Mercury, we’ve discovered new phenomena.”  That’s PhysOrg quoting says MESSENGER principal investigator Sean Solomon [Carnegie Institution].  “We’re learning that Mercury is an extremely dynamic planet, and it has been so throughout its history.”    That’s a very different picture than a few years ago, when Mercury was supposed to be a dead world, long ago frozen into silence.  Solomon was remarking about Mercury’s young volcanism, magnetic substorms and ionic emissions from its thin atmosphere, discovered during two previous flybys.  The spacecraft will go into orbit around Mercury next March: “we’ll be in for a terrific show,” remarked Solomon.    See the pictures on BBC News about the youngest volcano found on Mercury so far.  Science Daily surveyed the most surprising finds, and National Geographic News focused on huge “curious” power surges detected in the planet’s atmosphere.  “There’re some things here we clearly do not understand,” said one scientist.Quakers in space:  Ever heard of spacequakes?  Those are impacts of plasma blobs from the sun on the Earth’s magnetic field.  Big ones can push the field all the way down to Earth’s surface, said, then they bounce like a tennis ball with decreasing amplitude.  The THEMIS spacecraft “discovered something new and surprising” in this “long suspected” phenomenon, the article said: “The surprise is plasma vortices, huge whirls of magnetized gas as wide as Earth itself, spinning on the verge of the quaking magnetic field.”    There are other quakers that have been discovered in space, too.  “Spacequakes aren’t the only unearthly temblors around,” said.  “Scientists have also discovered starquakes (violent trembling inside stars), moonquakes and asteroid quakes (seismic tremors on the surface of the moon and asteroids, respectively).”  Whole lot of shaking going on out there.Rings and hexagons:  Scientists from the Cassini mission orbiting Saturn shared a 6th anniversary CHARM teleconference this week (Cassini-Huygens Analysis and Results from the Mission).  Two Powerpoint presentations about the rings and atmosphere are available for download in PDF form (audio files may be posted later on).  An account of the number of surprises and phenomena not understood in the 100+ slides is left as an exercise; as teasers, they admitted that the B-ring edge is more dynamic and complex than can be understood (ditto for the F-ring), the rings may be much younger than Saturn, and the hexagon-shaped cloud pattern at Saturn’s north pole can only partially be modeled in the lab (audio is needed for full discussion).Super star:  According to theory, stars can only grow to about 150 times the mass of the sun, partly because they would burn out too quickly to be seen, partly because the winds would tear them apart, and partly because there is not enough gas and dust in most locales to gravitationally contract into a star much bigger than 150 solar masses.    Doubters, behold R136a1: a blue giant almost twice the theoretical size limit.  It is currently 265 times the sun’s mass, but astronomers estimate at birth it was a whopping 320 solar masses.  And talk about sunburn: its luminosity has been estimated at 10 million times brighter than our sun.  The BBC News said its radius is 30 times greater than our sun.  A diagram on National Geographic News illustrates the size difference.    Science Daily described the puzzle of this star: “Understanding how high mass stars form is puzzling enough, due to their very short lives and powerful winds, so that the identification of such extreme cases as R136a1 raises the challenge to theorists still further.”  Was it born big, or did it collect smaller stars into its household?  Astronomers were “really taken aback” by the discovery, National Geographic said, adding: “The discovery could rewrite the laws of stellar physics, since it’s long been thought that stars beyond a certain mass would be too unstable to survive.”The big burst:  Gamma ray bursts have been known since 1967, but an “extraordinary” one detected on June 21 was off the charts.  National Geographic News said that “Until now, scientists thought the brightest gamma-ray bursts sent out a maximum of 10,000 x-ray photons a second.”  Here’s the measured flux from this one: “145,000 photons a second… making this gamma-ray burst 10 to 15 times brighter than anything previously seen by Swift’s x-ray telescope.  It was so bright it “blinded” the Swift orbiting space telescope temporarily, saturating its detectors: the “rush of light from a minute-long gamma-ray burst proved so overwhelming that Swift’s data processing software temporarily shut down.”    Swift normally catches light from about two gamma ray bursts per week. said this super-bright one is stirring theories: “Just when we were beginning to think that we had seen everything that gamma-ray bursts could throw at us, this burst came along to challenge our assumptions about how powerful their X-ray emissions can be,” said Neil Gehrels, principal investigator for Swift.    A new mission named Xenia is being planned to watch for these cosmic beacons.  “The newfound burst, he said, means that Xenia mission designers will have to go back to the drawing board to make sure the probe will be able to handle the brightest flashes the universe can dish out.”  And speaking of explosions, Science Daily reported earlier this month that among the best-understood ones, Type 1a supernovae, the “Origin of Key Cosmic Explosions [Is] Still a Mystery.”There’s no indication that the number of surprising discoveries will decrease over the next few years.  Quite the contrary; an article on PhysOrg about early results from the Herschel Space Observatory with its SPIRE camera quoted Ian Smail of Durham University, who analyzes results from the mission: “It is already clear that we live in a changing Universe and, thanks to Herschel and SPIRE, few things are changing faster than our perception of it.”    Looking back over 400 years of astronomy since Galileo and Kepler, Joseph Burns of Cornell University surveyed the many surprising discoveries made in space, especially in the last 5 decades of the space program: the Van Allen belts; Venus’s young surface; old, cold moons that proved surprisingly active; old, cold comets that showed evidence of hot formation; asteroids thought to be hard rock that turn out to be rubble piles; remarkable dynamism in Saturn’s rings; chaotic motions of moons; and more.  “Few scientists envisaged that the neighbouring worlds explored by space missions would be so diverse, nor how entrancing many are.”  Publishing his account in Nature,2 (see also summary on, using the word “surprising” a number of times, he quoted a character from Tom Stoppard’s novel Arcadia in his conclusion talking about scientific revolutions: “It’s the best possible time to be alive, when almost everything you thought you knew is wrong.”1.  Boyce, Liu et al, “Lunar apatite with terrestrial volatile abundances,” Nature 466, pp 466�469, 2 July 2010, doi:10.1038/nature09274.2.  Joseph Burns, “The four hundred years of planetary science since Galileo and Kepler,” Nature 466, pp 575�584, 29 July 2010, doi:10.1038/nature09215.If some scientists want to celebrate their ignorance, some of us will be happy to supply the conical hats and party blowers.  To Joe’s list we can add many more surprises that, within the living memory of many of us, hit the astronomers broadside: quasars, pulsars, blazars, gamma-ray bursts, the cosmic microwave background radiation (partly predicted, but not to the expected values; see 06/12/2008), mature galaxies at the farthest distances (04/02/2009), gravitational lenses (partly predicted), silence from SETI, transient lunar phenomena, Io’s volcanoes, the Enceladus geysers, the inhospitable surfaces of Venus and Mars (civilizations were expected there into the 1960s), Ganymede’s magnetic field, the Kuiper belt, minor planets beyond Pluto, the lack of organics and carbonates (and life) on Mars, the tilted magnetic fields of Uranus and Neptune, the rings of Jupiter and Uranus and Neptune, the F-ring of Saturn, the geysers of Triton, binary asteroids… where could we stop?  It’s hard to find any object in space that closely matched what astronomers expected.  While we share the thrill of surprising discoveries with the astronomers, we should not treat them as prophets.  They have a lot of whiz at math (01/08/2010) and access to great equipment (12/08/2009), but are as fallible as the rest of us – though occasionally, the luck of discovery comes to the prepared minds.    Astronomy proceeds along two tracks: the theory track, and the data track.  Physicists at chalkboards derive equations that predict what might be found or try to explain what is found (03/28/2010, 01/20/2010, 01/13/2010).  Observational astronomers gather the raw data with telescopes.  Sometimes these tracks intersect.  Sometimes one precedes the other.  One might expect that observation would lead theory, trying to make sense of new observations.  Often, though, theory leads to discoveries.  Theory can even determine what observations get made, and what an astronomer “sees” with the senses – as when today’s astronomers pursue their mad quest (08/03/2009) for dark matter (02/28/2008) and dark energy (07/17/2010, 10/08/2009).  If the observations in the past 5 decades have been surprising, the theories have been even more so (06/30/2008): inflation (02/24/2009, 04/18/2008), black holes with universes inside them (04/10/2010), parallel universes, and the multiverse (02/22/2010, 12/05/2008).  While one would hope observations would constrain theory (08/26/2009), some of the latest theoretical speculations seem like acts of desperation to maintain beliefs in spite of the observations (03/19/2010, 10/28/2009, 09/28/2009, 11/17/2008; cf. 10/29/2007).    We’re all together for the ride on our planetary spaceship.  We have been given a phenomenal platform for scientific discovery (watch The Privileged Planet on YouTube).  Fallible as we all are, it should not be surprising to be surprised by what we find, as we peer farther into the unknown with better instruments.  What is surprising is for any of us to grant prophetic powers (both in terms of prediction and understanding) to a class of fellow mortals (06/23/2009, 10/16/2008), just because they label themselves scientists (03/10/2010, 01/15/2008).  The spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.  As new data comes rolling in from Kepler, MESSENGER, Herschel, Planck and future missions, let’s keep the marketplace open and a lively place for debate and critical thinking.(Visited 19 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Sudafrika: Riskieren Sie den Himmel

first_imgSudafrika verfugt uber 3.000 km Kustenlinie mit atemberaubenden Bergen – oft Seite and Seite. Die unterschiedlichen Terrains des Landes in Verbindung mit einem idealen Klima fur Aktivitaten im Freien, machen es zu einem reichen Jadggrund fur Adrenalinjunkies.SA bietet Weltklassenbergsteigen, Surfen, Tauchen, Wandern, Pferdesafaris, Mountainbiking, Fluss Rafting an – und in etwa jede andere Extremsportart, die Sie nennen konnen – dabei alle unterstutzt von engagierten Anbietern.Sudafrika bietet einige der besten und vielfaltigsten Berge zum besteigen in der Welt. Die Klippen sind groß, wild – und wollen noch entdeckt werden. Kapstadt ist besonders gut bestuckt, aber die Action beschrankt sich nicht auf das Westkap.Flussausfluge reichen von weitgehend malerischen bis zu klassifizierten Wildwasser Waschmaschinen Die Kust des Kanusports – bekannt als kloofing in Sudafrika – ist ein weiterer heißer Favorit, mit sowohl selbstgefuhrten als auch begleiteten Reisen im Angebot.Es gibt uber 100 aufgelistete Platze mit Startanlagen fur Gleitschirm- und Drachenflieger – und noch viel mehr weniger bekannte – mit Schulen in jedem Zentrum. Auch oben in der Luft gibt es viele Moglichkeiten fur Hubschrauberfahrten, Ballonfluge, Kunstfliegen, Fallschirmspringen und Ultraleichtflugzeuge.Tausende von Kilometern Wanderwege wickeln sich um das Land in Wuste, Wald, Berg- oder Kustenterrain herum, viele mit angrenzenden Mountenbikefahrten.Es gibt wunderbare leichte Pferdefahrten durch Weinberge, am Strand oder in den Bergen und – fur die richtig abenteuerlustigen – Pferdesafaris in Großwildlandschaft.Und wenn Sie das ganz schnelle Hoch suchen, gibt es die 216 Meter hohe Bloukrans Brucke an der Grenze des Ost- und Westkaps mit dem hochsten kommerziellen Bungeesprung der Welt.Oder Sie konnen sich uber den krachenden Wellen bei dem Western Head am Knysna abseilen, einen Kilometer hoch uber Kapstadt hangen, in Kombination abseilen, mit dem Kanu durch die Storms River Schlucht schlingern, oder einen Rappelling-Sprung an den Gebauden in Durban oder Johannesburg hinunter wagen. Die Schwerkraft wirkt auf spektakulare Art in Sudafrika!SAinfo reporter, mit Material von South African Tourismlast_img read more

Sensational new twist in Colombian football crash

first_imgThe investigation into a  Colombian plane crash that wiped out a football team has taken a sensational new turn with the claims the pilot-in-command did not spend enough hours training to satisfy the requirements for a commercial pilot’s licence.The November 29 crash near the Colombian city of Medellin of the LaMia charter flight killed 71 people, including most members of the Brazilian soccer team Chapecoense. The British Aerospace Avro RJ85, travelling from Santa Cruz in Bolivia,  appears to have run out of fuel as it tried to land at Medellin after making the trip without a usual fuel stop and as it approached the edge of its range.  The situation became critical after the LaMIa aircraft was placed in a holding pattern after another plane with a technical problem was given priority to land.Final transmissions from the plane included a desperate plea for landing instructions accompanied by a warning of an electrical failure and a lack of fuel.Bolivian authorities have accused the small airline of disregarding rules on fuel reserves, suspended its license and arrested its manager. It has also replaced the management of its aviation authority, saying it needs to ensure a transparent investigation.Reports have now emerged from Bolivian news agency ABI and Agence France-Presse that the pilot in charge did not have enough hours to qualify as a commercial pilot.”We have been able to demonstrate that pilot Miguel Quiroga had not completed the training hours required” to fly commercially, ABI quoted Omar Duran, attorney for the family of copilot Fernando Goytia, as saying. Both pilots were killed in the crash.”Apparently in 2013, some falsified information was relayed and despite the fact authorities verify that (Quiroga) did not have the flight hours required he got his license,” in Bolivia.Duran  also disclosed that the co- pilot was aware of the deficiency but did not tell authorities to protect the airline’s reputation.According to the latest International Civil Aviation Organsiation audit,  Bolivia is below the world average in five of the eight audit categories, including licensing. The other categories in which it falls short are: legislation, organisation, airworthiness, and air navigation services. It is above the world average in aerodromes,  operations and accident investigation.The startling news came after a footballer who survived the crash s revealed he had changed seats at the last minute at the bidding of a team-mate.Reuters reported that Chapecoense full-back Alan Ruschel was sitting near the back of the plane when club director Cadu Gaucho asked him to move to let journalists sit together. “I didn’t want to but then I saw (goalkeeper Jackson) Follman and he insisted that I sit beside him,” Ruschel said. “Only God can explain why I survived the accident. He grabbed me and gave me a second chance.”Follman also survived but had part of his leg amputated.Ruschel said he did not remember anything about the accident and it had seemed like a nightmare when he was told about it.“Little by little they’ve been telling me what happened and I’m starting to understand,’’ he said. “I try not to speak of the accident, I avoid the news, but from the little I’ve seen I think it was greed on the pilot’s part.”last_img read more

Des Moines Water Works legal battle comes to an end

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest A federal district court has dismissed the controversial Des Moines Water Works lawsuit that put the agricultural community on edge for the past two years. While the decision is favorable for agriculture, it doesn’t resolve the question of whether the water utility could prove that nitrates draining from farm fields are harming the utility’s water sources. The court’s dismissal prevents Des Moines Water Works from further asserting such claims.The lawsuit by the Des Moines Water Works (DMWW) utility sued irrigation districts in three Iowa counties for allowing discharges of nitrates through drainage infrastructure and into the waterways from which the utility drew its water. In addition to claiming that the discharges violate the federal Clean Water Act’s permitting requirements, DMWW also asserted nuisance, trespassing, negligence, takings without compensation, and due process and equal protection claims under Iowa law. The utility sought monetary damages for the cost of removing nitrates from its water as well as an injunction ordering the drainage districts to stop the discharges with proper permits.The federal district court first certified several questions of state law to the Iowa Supreme Court to clarify whether Iowa law provided immunity to the drainage districts for DMWW’s claims. On January 27, 2017, the Iowa Supreme Court responded in the positive, explaining that Iowa drainage districts had been immune from damages and injunctive relief claims for over a century because drainage districts “have a limited, targeted role—to facilitate the drainage of farmland in order to make it more productive.” The Iowa court also clarified that Iowa’s Constitution did not provide a basis for DMWW’s constitutional arguments.Turning to the party’s claims in light of the Iowa Supreme Court’s ruling, the federal district court focused on the drainage district’s motion to dismiss DMWW’s claims based on the doctrine of redressability, which requires a showing that the alleged injury is likely to be redressed by a favorable decision. The doctrine of redressability concludes that a plaintiff cannot have standing to sue and therefore cannot proceed in a case if the defendant doesn’t have the power to redress or remedy the injury even if the court granted the requested relief.The drainage districts argued that they could not redress DMWW’s Clean Water Act claims because the districts had no power to regulate the nitrates flowing through the drainage systems. The court agreed, stating that “DMWW seeks injunctive relief and the assessment of civil penalties against the drainage districts arising from alleged duties and powers that the districts simply do not possess under Iowa law. DMWW may well have suffered an injury, but the drainage districts lack the ability to redress that injury.”The federal district court also dismissed DMWW’s remaining claims against the drainage districts. DMWW argued that the immunity given the drainage districts as described by the Iowa Supreme Court prevented DMWW’s remaining claims and thus violated the U.S. Constitution’s Equal Protection, Due Process, and Takings Clauses. The federal district court found these contentions to be “entirely devoid of merit” and dismissed the state law claims of nuisance, trespassing, negligence, takings, due process and equal protection. Because none of the counts against the drainage districts survived the court’s scrutiny, the court dismissed and closed the case.The DMWW case was a futile but somewhat inventive attempt to allocate liability for nitrate pollution to the agricultural community.“Unregulated agricultural discharges into Iowa’s rivers, lakes and streams continue to increase costs to our customers and damage Iowa’s water quality and environment,” said DMWW’s CEO Bill Stowe upon filing the lawsuit.A public poll by the Des Moines Register soon after Stowe brought the DMWW lawsuit showed that 42% of the respondents agreed with him in believing that farmers should pay for nitrate removal from DMWW’s waters, while 32% thought those who lived in Des Moines should pay to remove the nitrates.If the goal is to force agriculture to reduce nutrient run off or pay for the cost of removing nutrients from waterways, the DMWW case tells us that suing those who oversee agricultural drainage infrastructure projects is not the proper mechanism for accomplishing that goal. So will the next strategy be to sue the farmers who use the nutrients and the drainage infrastructure?One challenge in suing farmers for nutrient runoff, and the issue that was not addressed in DMWW, is whether nutrient runoff from farm fields carried through drainage systems constitutes a “point source” that requires regulation under the Clean Water Act, or whether nutrient runoff fits within the agricultural exemption under the Clean Water Act. That law defines a “point source” as “any discernible, confined and discrete conveyance, including but not limited to any pipe, ditch, channel, tunnel, conduit, well, discrete fissure, container, rolling stock, concentrated animal feeding operation, or vessel or other floating craft, from which pollutants are or may be discharged,” but states that point sources do not include “agricultural storm water discharges and return flows from irrigated agriculture.” What we still don’t know after two years of DMWW litigation is whether a court would put the transport of agricultural nutrients through drainage systems in the point source definition or would consider it an agricultural exemption from the point source definition.A second challenge in an attempt to bring agricultural nutrients under the Clean Water Act is the burden of proof upon the plaintiff to prove the actual origin of a downstream nutrient—who applied the nutrient that ended up downstream? DMWW sought to minimize this challenge by suing the drainage districts that oversee the entire region. But had the case proceeded, DMWW still would have had to trace the nutrients to the region, a difficult task.The agricultural community expects that its voluntary efforts to reduce nitrate and phosphorus runoff from farm fields will positively impact water quality and stem the possibility of more litigation like the DMWW case. A multitude of voluntary efforts are underway, such as Iowa’s Nutrient Reduction Strategy and the flourish of cover crops in the Western Lake Erie Basin. Ohio has also added a regulatory approach that requires farmers to engage in fertilizer application training. Let’s hope these initiatives will reduce nutrient impacts before another party is willing to point its finger at agriculture and pursue a lawsuit like DMWW.last_img read more

Final Cut Pro X Tutorial: Applying LUTs to Log Footage

first_imgLearn how to make Log footage pop using built-in LUTs with this Final Cut Pro X tutorial.If you work with Log footage often, you probably know that it’s not advisable to edit without a Lookup Table (or LUT). By itself, Log footage is incredibly desaturated and lacking in visual appeal. This is because Log footage holds much more color information than your average image. However, when it comes to editing, you don’t want to work with muddy footage. This is where a LUT comes into play.If you’re aren’t already familiar, a LUT is an algorithm that tells your computer, monitor, or editing software to process pixel information in a certain way. By using a LUT, you can accurately convert the color of your image to reflect what the filmmaker intended. LUTs aren’t just limited to color corrections, they can also be used to stylize footage.Up until recently, FCPX didn’t have the tools necessary to natively convert Log footage from Log to R 709 (broadcast standard colors). That was , until a recent update that allowed users to convert Log footage using built-in LUTs for most popular camera brands.In the following Final Cut Pro X tutorial, we’ll take a look at how this process is performed in FCPX, using a variety of different videos from multiple cameras to show you how FCPX converts each Log clip differently.Want to learn more about LUTs in FCPX? Check out a few of the following resources:LUTs and FCPX – DigitalFilmsLUTs in Final Cut Pro X – Too Much ImaginationBlockbuster LUTs for Video Editors and Colorists – PremiumBeatAnd, just for kicks, here’s a video that explains LUTS using cats.Want to see more tutorials from me? Check out my author page here on the PremiumBeat blog.Have any tips for applying LUTs or working with Log footage in FCPX? Please share in the comments below.last_img read more