Nov 21, 2015

Random Articles - RAW 151121


One of my pet hates since the release of the Star Wars prequels is the way Darth Vader's image has been downgraded from evil, menacing and intimidating, to goofy, misguided and misunderstood.  However it looks like a newly released graphic novel, Vader Down, is restoring his reputation.  Maybe you want to grab it, or your favourite novel, and enjoy some reading this weekend.  Don't forget to have your favourite beverage at hand.  This blend looks interesting...



  • Self-Published Books Account for 18% of the US Market
  • Extended copyrights cause a huge availability gap
  • BBC launches year-long campaign to 'get nation reading'

  • The Simple But Brilliant Engineering Behind a Nerf Blaster
  • Everysight’s Android wearable could change biking forever

  • The New Star Wars Crossover Comic Rejuvenates Darth Vader's Terrifying Reputation

  • New Pluto Images Hint At Alien Weather Cycle
  • The New Pluto
  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Explains Why Pluto Remains Unqualified As A Planet




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Self-Published Books Account for 18% of the US Market


goodereader.com - When it comes to self-published e-books and print titles, it is hard to capture any meaningful data. Jonathan Stolper of Nielsen gave a talk at this years Frankfurt Book Fair and dropped a bombshell. Self-Published books account for 18% of the total volume of sales in the United States. Read more...


Extended copyrights cause a huge availability gap


teleread.com - Techdirt has posted some charts that provide an excellent example of the big gaping hole in popular culture created by current copyright laws. The charts show the availability of works from different decades in a number of different contexts—the number of new books shipped from Amazon warehouses by decade, works available on Europeana by decade, and so forth—but they all have a remarkably similar shape: a big gap in the middle with much higher levels to the left, for public-domain titles, or at the right, for recent titles.  Read more...


BBC launches year-long campaign to 'get nation reading'


thebookseller.com - Director-general of the BBC, Tony Hall, announced Get Reading today (17th November), a campaign that celebrates great authors and their works in order to galvanise the nation into talking about books as well as reading them. Across BBC One, Two and Four, the campaign will recognise the work of well-known authors such as the BrontĂ«s and Rudyard Kipling, while Radio 4 will explore the work of figures such as Alex Garland, Toni Morrison and Jeanette Winterson. Its crescendo will be a BBC-hosted ‘Get Reading Weekend’ featuring specially commissioned programmes across BBC TV, Radio and online in November 2016.  Read more...





The Simple But Brilliant Engineering Behind a Nerf Blaster


gizmodo.com - You probably don’t give much thought to how the Nerf blaster in your hand works while you fire away at annoyed co-workers, but take a few minutes to watch this video and you’ll have a better appreciation for what is actually quite a marvel of plastic engineering. And that’s just one of the most basic Nerf blasters he’s taken apart. Imagine the engineering that goes into something like this. View...

Everysight’s Android Wearable Could Change Biking Forever 


technobuffalo.com - Amid rumors that Google Glass could be returning with a display-free design, a new challenger has entered the ring with its own impressive vision for the future of wearable technology. Everysight, a spinoff of Israeli defense giant Elbit Systems, unveiled plans for a set of augmented reality sports goggles set to launch in 2016. Read more...




The New Star Wars Crossover Comic Rejuvenates Darth Vader's Terrifying Reputation


io9.com - Darth Vader should be an immensely intimidating figure. Emphasis on the should, because over the years, his appearances in increasingly silly scenarios as part of Star Wars’ place in pop culture have blunted his reputation. But Vader Down’s first issue is a fantastic reminder that we should never underestimate the power of the Dark Side. Read more...





New Pluto Images Hint At Alien Weather Cycle


popular science - For all intents and purposes, Pluto and Earth don't have a lot in common. One is a planet, one is not (or at least not officially). One is an ice world, while the other is mostly water. One is red, the other blue. But black and white photos can obscure a lot of those differences. In the latest batch of images returned from the New Horizons spacecraft, Pluto looks a lot like home. Read more...


The New Pluto


creation.com - With the recent flyby of Pluto now in the history books, it’s time to compare what scientists predicted with what they found.  It’s been very fulfilling for senior citizens who watched the birth of the space program in 1957 to see the final leg of space reconnaissance of our solar system. Sure, Pluto has been demoted to a ‘dwarf planet’, but for most old-school students, it was the Ninth Planet—the only one never visited by spacecraft. That all changed on 14 July, 2015 with the phenomenally successful flyby of Pluto and its moons by the New Horizons spacecraft. Read more...


Neil deGrasse Tyson Explains Why Pluto Remains Unqualified As A Planet


astrobio.net - Tyson reminds us why, precisely, Pluto remains unqualified as a planet (no matter what new discoveries are made) and why that doesn’t dampen his interest in the King of the Kuiper Belt. “Some of the most interesting places in the Solar System are not planets at all,” he said. And he insists that Pluto’s blue sky, although interesting, is a bit over-celebrated. Read more...



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