Archives for June, 2009

There’s no doubt that physics and astronomy was booming in the 1960s. The model that protons and neutrons were made of quarks was proposed and validated, the most powerful nuclear device of all time was detonated, and the Cosmic Microwave Background was discovered, validating the Big Bang. (Not to mention devastating advances in biology, too.)…

Carnival of Space #109 is live!

Last week, I was lucky enough to get to host the Carnival of Space. This week, the honor goes to Jennifer Ouellette at Twisted Physics, and my article on the 1950s and Fred Hoyle gets top billing! There are a bunch of other highlights to check out. Here are my top 3 CoS picks of…

Water in Space: What Happens?

The Earth is one of those extremely rare, special places in the Universe where water can exist, stably, as a liquid. So much of it exists here on Earth, that if you were to add up all the oceans on Earth together, it would weigh more than 10^18 tonnes, more massive than the biggest asteroid…

All the day long whether rain or shine she’s a part of the assembly line she’s making history working for victory Rosie the Riveter! One of the most iconic images, spawned by this song: is that of Rosie the Riveter. For the first time in the United States, women were not only entering the workforce,…

How stable are skyscrapers?

Or, to put it as one of my readers/questioners did, Why doesn’t the Space Needle, a top-heavy skyscraper, ever tip over and fall? This is reasonable, and there’s precedent for this. After all, the Leaning Tower of Pisa was falling over, and needed significant foundation-work just to keep it upright. Now, when you take something…

Making the Elements in the Universe

Earlier this week, I wrote about how the heavier elements in the Universe were made. Specifically, that they are made in stars. These stars then explode in a variety of ways, enriching the Universe with these heavy elements, and allowing us to form glorious things, like our planet! By contrast, the big bang makes light…

Ethics Question: A Man’s Rights

There is a long history of oppression of women on many fronts in our society. Socially, politically, economically, and legally, among others. There are a number of very good bloggers here who often address gender issues, and I’m not typically one of them. But two things happened to me yesterday that brings up a gender…

In the 1940s, the Big Bang theory was first conceived and detailed. But, to quote Niels Bohr, We are all agreed that your theory is crazy. The question which divides us is whether it is crazy enough to have a chance of being correct. My own feeling is that it is not crazy enough. One…

We have a treat for you this week: Starts With A Bang gets to host this week’s Carnival of Space! We take the best space and astronomy posts from around the internet and pull them together in one great extravaganza! I’ve gotten to host twice before, and this is a very special edition for astronomers.…

Weekend Diversion: The Steps of Man

Somewhere in my mind, I like to try and construct a timeline of all of human history. Yes, there’s the obvious stuff, like the discovery of fire, the learning of what foods will and won’t kill you, the domestication of the dog, and all the similar things that led us to become successful hunter/gatherer tribes.…