Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Help Nasa identify interstellar dust

Those of you who are even remotely interested in astronomy, you must have read about the recent return to earth of the Stardust capsule.
In a nutshell, Nasa sent a capsule into space in 1999 and today it comes back with contents from the core of a commet.

According to BBC, the capsule is believed to contain about a million particles of comet and interstellar dust left over from the birth of the Solar System 4.6 billion years ago. Comets are thought to be cosmic time capsules containing material unchanged since the formation of the Sun and planets. Finding these particles and being able to analyze them could provide a new window into the distant past.

AND.. you can be a part of it! Nasa are looking for 30,000 volunteers to work from their homes and help locate these particles.

According to Sydney Morning Herald: Any volunteer who discovers an interstellar dust particle will appear as a co-author on the scientific paper announcing the discovery of the particle by the Stardust@home collaboration. Sign up - I did!

Friday, January 13, 2006

Dullest blog in the world

Yes, it does exist! Check it out
Did make me laugh though :) And he has over 100 comments per post! Worth the visit.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Why do you blog?

Was aimlessly surfing the net today and I came across an article that really puts the finger on what blogging is all about:

'Blogging is about conversations among people in real time and real voices. That's what makes it sticky. Communities get built around these conversations. Sometimes with spontaneous order, at other times more gradually.'

It also goes on to talking about how influencial the blogging community can be. Gives examples of how a blogger aided a relief programme for Tsunami and Katrina victims and how Gaurav Sabni was threatened when he posted something negative on his blog about IIM's. Yikes how trivial is my blog in comparison.

Mind you, I didn't create this blog to influence change in the world, nor is it supposed to be my online journal. It was just made on a whim actually, and I've landed up quite enjoying the process.

I read alot more online now, I feel alot more clued into not only general things, but offbeat things happening in the world around me, like knowing a beer has been invented for dogs or how Machu Pichu is being ruined by tourism. Its funny how if I want to know how to enhance something on my blog, I go to a certain blog - thinking - he'd know; or if I find someones thought process interesting and that person doesn't post for a while, I get restless. Bizarre huh. Sometimes I leave a comment on someones blog I like, for the sake of it, just so that particular person might visit my blog someday.

A thought, spurred by a fellow bloggers post, 'how can we inject life into our blogosphere?'. I dont think our blogosphere is dead in anyway. Yes, we rant alot more than we should - but hey we can do that on blogs :) I also don't think you can 'plan' to make your blogosphere happening. The beauty of blogging is that random opinions are posted and sometimes they turn out to stimulate consequential conversations.

I'm not sure what point I'm trying to make here. This post has been fuelled by me trying to define the type of blogger I am; but the more I do it, the more I realise that I don't have to define the nature of anything I post. I'm not a writer or a journalist. However, writers and journalists influence. Perhaps thats what blogging is: being able to stimulate/impact/influence/inspire or merely make laugh a fellow blogger or reader.

But then again, I blog because I enjoy it, with no intention of any of the above. Have you thought about why you blog?

Another interesting point in this article is blogging and its impact on media.

' it is true that with the mainstream media dumbing down with a vengeance and looking to their bottom line rather than people who live at the bottom, bloggers are very much in business. They are telling it like it is, rather than what media barons decide is politically or commercially more convenient'

Are the days of the media numbered? And are we bloggers part of the reason? Imagine being part of some 'bloggers movement' to change the basis on which people form their opinions!
How exciting!

Anyway, this post of mine is a bit over-analysed so am going to stop while I'm making a bit of sense (I hope I am anyway!). But then again, do I really have to make sense to everyone who reads my blog? :)
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