Have you ever looked up at the sky and wondered just how big our universe was? Well, most people have...and such an answer cannot possibly be answered at this point in time in our technological state. Multiple dimensions, black holes, supernovae, worm holes, and a host of other seemingly exotic cosmic phenomenons - theorized and existing - will forever provoke our amazement.
Our Sun consumes massive amounts of hygroden in a nuclear process which occurs in the stellar core, where pressure - proportional to the mass of the star - is so immense that hydrogen atoms bind and release incredible amounts of energy. It's pretty much the same process in a thermonuclear detonation, where an element of high density implodes, causing hydrogen atoms to bind to eachother and expend massive amounts of energy. The only difference being is that the Sun's mass is creating the pressures inside it's core, whereas in a thermonuclear detonation, an implosion is caused by setting off a complex framework of simultaneous detonations which sends pressure inward, causing the element to implode on itself. It is critical that these detonations are precise, or else the entire process will not work properly.
Here is a composite image of the Earth at night - atmosphere omitted - that shows the principal power consumers (North America, Europe, the Far East) on the globe and their extensive electric infrastructure. Notice how infrastructure is lacking in places where there is dense jungle, desert and snowy wastelands, and mountain ranges. Our planet is truly on it's way to becoming a global metropolis.
Being the curious life forms we are, Human beings are compelled to explore their reality in search for answers to questions which are clouded in mystery. The dawn of the new millenium has ushered in the beginning of the space age. Although it remains in an infant state (technology wise), our partial understanding of the cosmos - combined with internal planetary pressures - has prompted us to explore our solar system and peer into the deepest reaches of our universe with sophisticated telescopes - such as the SOHO infrared telescope, or the Hubble Space Telescope. With these latest exploratory missions, we have officially become an interplanetary species (so cool).
The privately-funded organization, SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence), has been aiming their radiotelescopes at the sky in search for structured signals - from the entire electromagnetic spectrum - from distant parts of our galaxy. SETI has even gone as far as to claim that we will probably make contact with an extraterrestrial civilization within one life time. Whether this is probable or not, I haven't the slightest clue, but one thing is for sure...even if we do make contact with extraterrestrials, our technology will not allow for practical communication. The speed of light (180 000 miles/s or 300 000km/s) is currently the fastest form of communication known to us, but when you're dealing with distances so vast that we measure them in light-years, it simply isn't fast enough. This means that we will only be able to transmit a signal back towards the location of the extraterrestrial emission, and perhaps receive the response hundreds or even thousands of years down the line; that's if we haven't destroyed ourselves yet.
Think about DNA as a complex biological programming language which is robust and yet prone to corruption (mutations). Advancements in biomolecular technology and the mapping of the genome opens our future to a host of possibilities. Cloning, genetic manipulation to produce better babies (eugenics), organ/tissue production, and a host of other applications will most likely be received both negatively and positively by the general public. Such issues as ethics in this particular field has prompted the government to impose regulations on related industries whose exploitation of the newly developed field could lead to some nasty consequences...such as cloning of the acting president (LOL).
FreewareHome.com -This site contains a lot of freeware that will no doubt be of interest to you.
Download.com -This well known site has a lot of cool scientific software.
Astronomy.ch -This site has some awesome astronomy programs.
Dan's Software Page -Very interesting site with a wide assortment of astronomy software to meet your needs.
BioChem -DNA sequencing software.
ChemSoft -Software for chemistry, biochemistry and laboratory management.
Physics Software -Website containing interesting physics programs. Good site!
Biometrics Software -Aware has been a leading provider of commercial off-the-shelf
(COTS), standards-based Biometrics Software since 1992
Scientific Calculator Software -The Ultimate TI-85 Software Archive
BIMAS -Molecular Biology Software
Seti@Home -Participate by running a screen saver program that downloads and analyzes radio telescope data.
Sites of particular interest:
Jet Propulsion Laboratory -Managed for NASA by the California Institute of Technology.
NASA -News, links, mission schedules, and NASA for kids.
Massechusettes Institute of Technology -MIT is devoted to the advancement of knowledge and education of students in areas
that contribute to or prosper in an environment of science and technology.
American Institute of Physics -It is the mission of the Institute to serve physics, astronomy, and related fields of science.
MENSA International -Mensa International is an international high-IQ society that welcomes people from
every walk of life whose IQ is in the top 2% of the population.
SETI Institute -Conducts scientific research on life in the universe.
DailyPlanet -An immensely cool website that offers a wide range of fun.
European Space Agency -Resource for European launchers, space science, telecommunications, Earth observation and manned spaceflight.
Canadian Space Agency -Offers overview of research programs. Includes scientific documents, project descriptions, newsletters, etc.
ThemeWorld.com -Large index of desktop themes, screen savers, fonts and wallpaper.
Astronomy Wallpaper -Download free astronomy wallpaper for Windows 95, 98 and NT.
Edmonton Rocketry Club -Notice: The Edmonton Rocketry Club is always on a search for a large field within
an hours drive of Edmonton to be a potential site for a high power rocket.
Programmer's Heaven -Online site for programmers with thousands of links and files to explore.
NanoTech -Non-profit institute focused on nanotechnology, the coming ability to build materials and products.
FloodLight -An educational resource on conspiracy theories, extremist groups and the American far right.
International High IQ Society -Great site with sophisticated testing techniques and accurate results. Take their IQ test now!.
HackingExposed-The 4th edition is hot off the press. Great for novice hackers looking to broaden their knowledge.
Python Programming-A general introduction to programming via Python........clear and concise.
AndroidWorld- Lots of information on androids and specific android projects.
MathWorld- Glossary of terms. Material ranges from undergraduate to research level.
Hubble- News, notes and fun from the home of the Hubble Space Telescope
Spitzer Space Telescope- A space-borne, cryogenically-cooled infrared observatory. Nasa's next generation space observatory.
CERN Chess- Tournaments of the CERN Rapid Chess Masters 2003.
Star Wars- Includes official news, information on episodes, and images.
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