Stolen Moments in London

Stolen Moments in London

So, I have to admit to being a bad person today. I snuck away from working for several hours to explore the British Museum. It was an amazing sun filled day and light streamed in from the sky lights, bringing the outside in to illuminate 1000s of artifacts gathered from around the globe. One of my favorite pieces of sculpture is at the British Museum, and after getting lost among roomfuls of historic coins, I got to take in what is advertised as the Horse of Selene. I used to have a magnificent horse named Quantum Leap. He died a number of years ago, and there is something in this statue that reminds me of his fight. It is perhaps a foolish thing to compare my own old warm blood to a steed of the Gods, but if Zeus or Apollo are offended, they are welcome to...

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The Internet and Human Relations

The past 48 hours or so have been a mad adventure across the UK. From meeting with Astronomy Cast and Galaxy Zoo folks in London to recording Astronomy Cast and attending a dinner seminar in Oxford yesterday with Chris Lintott, everything I’ve done has been facilitated through the Internet. It seems that sometimes real life social interactions are just a click or a forum post away. My life, put simply, is lived as much through digital communications as it is through face to face interactions. Some days the virtual interactions are even the more important ones. This simple truth is something that one of last night’s speakers made me think very hard about. Thanks to a few emails from Chris, I was able to attend the Monday evening keynote for the Silicon...

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A trip in pictures

A trip in pictures

I still have much coding to do, so this needs to be short. For now, I leave you with a photo gallery of my adventures in Garching (Where ESO and Max-Planck are located) and near the Rathaus in downtown Germany. I’ll write more when I get to the UK tomorrow night, and I hope to see you Sunday at Mabel’s Tavern in...

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Where (some of) the magic happens

I love random adventures, and currently I’m in the midst of one. Last Thursday I flew from St Louis to London where I spent a couple days recovering from jetlag somewhere that I (almost) speak the language, and then yesterday I flew on to Munich where I am now working with other International Year of Astronomy folks to build the Portal to the Universe. While getting to London was more of an adventure then intended (my luggage was lost again), the too few hours I got to spend in the UK were wonderful. On Saturday I took a train out to the east side of England (Audley End) to meet some of the wonderful folks behind Galaxy Zoo, including Steven Bamford, whose journal articles on galaxy morphologies and galaxies in cluster environments I’ve been gleaning...

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My Summer Vacation off the Grid

My Summer Vacation off the Grid

For the past 5 days I’ve been in the middle of New Hampshire staying with some old friends. About 5 years ago they bought a bunch of acres on top of a small mountain in New Hampshire. It was empty land with nothing more than a logging road and a clearing. At the time of the purchase, they were city slickers making a living off the biotech boom in Boston. Desiring to simplify and reduce their impact on the Earth, they built a home for themselves entirely off the grid, grew a garden, and started their own company, Northeast Renewables, LLC (Image: Solar panels and wind turbine. Mt Cardigan is on extreme left of image) There is a myth in America that off the grid means outside of society. Through mainstream media we’ve been exposed to stories of strange...

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