Apollo 13 commander Jim Lovell’s MIT speech

Last week was Apollo 13’s 50th anniversary – the most “successful failure” in the history of space exploration. On April 27, 2016, former NASA astronaut and Apollo 13 commander Jim Lovell made a speech at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and told the story of the legendary Apollo 13 flight. Here’s the full video of that speech below.

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A History of Pandemics (8000 B.C.-today)

Lindsay Holiday published two-part very informative video series titled “A History of Pandemics” on Youtube. These pandemics (and epidemics) have occurred countless times in the past, infecting, injuring and killing millions, and sometimes changing dramatically the course of human history.

But, first, what is a pandemic? What is an epidemic?

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Nature’s comeback? No, the coronavirus pandemic actually threatens the world’s wildlife

Charlie Gardner, University of Kent

There have not been many bright spots in the coronavirus pandemic, but one has been the apparent return of nature as the frantic pace of modern life has slowed. We’ve seen fish-eating birds return to the clear waters of Venice, wild boar roaming the streets of Bergamo, and of course the feral mountain goats of Llandudno.

In Britain, wildlife seems set for a bountiful spring and summer. Fewer cars on the road means less roadkill, and many birds and voles will be spared as owners decide to keep their cats indoors. In towns and cities, wildflowers will surely flourish as councils realise that mowing their parks and verges is somewhat less than essential. Nature, it seems, is making a comeback.

Unfortunately, this is but a partial picture and one that is limited to the minority world of industrialised nations. Most of the world’s biodiversity is found in the low-income countries and emerging economies of the Global South, and in such places, the economic impacts of the pandemic are likely to be devastating for the natural world.

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A new Earth-sized planet (Kepler-1649c) in the habitable zone has been detected

A new Earth-sized planet named Kepler-1649c orbiting its star in the habitable zone has been detected by a team of scientists, using reanalyzed data from NASA’s Kepler space telescope, NASA has announced.

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What’s the Epidemiology Behind COVID-19?

In the last three months, our entire lives have been upended by an organism we can’t see and little understand. In the process, it has transformed millions of us into homeschool teachers of our children, remote workers, and public policy pundits as we debate what our government officials are doing right, and wrong, in response to this global crisis.

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Venice from Space, 2019 vs 2020

The European Space Agency (ESA) published an image showing Italy’s beautiful Venice from space, April 2019 vs April 2020. The 2020 version shows the Grand Canal of Venice and Giudecca Canal (Venetian: Canal de ła Zueca) are empty of boats.

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Tomorrow is Now: Scientific Discoveries and Processes Driving the Tech of the Future

In recent decades, consumer and commercial technologies have developed so rapidly, so expansively, that those of us who came of age prior to the digital revolution would hardly recognize the world today if we hadn’t experienced it. Those of us old enough to remember the 1990s could never have anticipated how today’s technologies would infiltrate and change nearly every aspect of our daily lives. And yet, when it comes to the future of tech, we ain’t seen nothing yet.

Every day, scientific discoveries are being made and new processes are being developed that will make today’s technologies look like child’s play. This article will introduce some of the most exciting technology being developed that will change our world.

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Apollo 13 booster impact experiment – footage by NASA

The story of Apollo 13 (called a “successful failure” by the mission commander Jim Lovell) goes beyond a tale of survival. The mission also successfully completed a science investigation that is still helping to inform our understanding of the Moon to this day. Early in Apollo 13’s voyage, Mission Control sent the spacecraft’s empty S-IVB rocket booster on a collision course with the lunar surface, where a seismometer set up by the Apollo 12 mission would measure the tremors.

The video below, published by NASA Goddard Channel contains archival footage captured by the crew & newly-uncovered audio. It highlights the beginning and end of that impact experiment and shows how current data and imagery from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter mission helps us better interpret and analyze the results.

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