Free Weezy!!!

Grammy award-winning recording artist Lil’ Wayne is due out of prison this Thursday, November 4th, 2010. Billboard has an interview with the rapper, and we have a copy of one of his handwritten letters.

 

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Goldilocks Zone

Astronomers found a new planet 20 light years away, one that is 3x the size of Earth, and one that can possibly have water, which is real good for life.

Discover Magazine reports:

If you’re too close to a star, it’s too hot to support liquid water. If you’re too far, it freezes. This defines a rough region from the star — the Goldilocks Zone, for obvious reasons — where liquid water can exist on the surface of a planet. This depends on the star, of course, but also on other factors like the planet’s atmosphere; Venus could have liquid water, but its super-thick atmosphere produces a runaway greenhouse effect which has heated it to 460° C (900° F). If Mars had a thick atmosphere, it might support liquid water! So the planet itself matters here too.

Gliese 581g, as the new planet is called, is in the zone where the temperature is just right. And with a mass of just three times that of the Earth, it’s unlikely to be a gas giant.

Due to the nature of science and evidence based experimentation, the scientists that published their discovery warn that more has to be done. This is not conclusive evidence of a habitable planet only 20 light years away.

From the journal article ms_press-1 [PDF]

Finally, it is important to keep in mind that, though all 6 planets presented here are

well-supported by the calculated reduced chi-squared statistics and also by several different

variants of FAP statistics, and the entire 6-planet system is consistent with the combined

data set from both teams, caution is warranted as most of the signals are small. And there

may yet be unknown systematic errors in either or both data sets.

This is the good news, and not only because it is easier to read: (again from Discover Magazine)

But perhaps the most interesting and exciting aspect of all this is what it implies. The Milky Way galaxy is composed of about 200 billion stars, and is 100,000 light years across. The fact that we found a planet that is even anything like the Earth at all orbiting another star only 20 light years away makes meextremely optimistic that earthlike planets are everywhere in our galaxy. 20 light years is practically in our lap compared to the vast size of our galaxy, so statistically speaking, it seems very likely it’s not unique. I don’t want to extrapolate from a data set of two (us and them), but if this is typical, there could be millions of such planets in the galaxy. Millions.

 

What else you got?

What the fuck has Obama done? More than I can remember. http://whatthefuckhasobamadonesofar.com/ has all the answers. Here are some of the things he has done.

Repealed Bush era restrictions on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/mar/09/obama-administration-stem-cell-funding)
Signed the Christopher and Dana Reeve Paralysis Act, the first piece of comprehensive legislation aimed at improving the lives of Americans living with paralysis (http://www.christopherreeve.org/site/c.ddJFKRNoFiG/b.4506337/apps/s/content.asp?ct=6866203)
Established Credit Card Bill of Rights, preventing credit card companies from imposing arbitrary rate increases on customers (http://politifact.com/truth-o-meter/promises/promise/33/establish-a-credit-card-bill-of-rights/)

And the list goes on. This list is in memory of all those Democrats who today end their civic service. Thanks for your votes, they cost you a seat.

[edit: WhatTheFuckHasObamaDoneSoFar is a partisan website. All claims are sketchy until proven worthy.]

Grave Days for Dems

How many house seats will the Dems lose tomorrow? Howard Fineman of the Huffington Post reports not 39 (still holding a majority), not 50-55 (relatively even with the Republicans) but 70 seats. 70! Fineman writes,

But within the last 12 hours I’ve spoken to two top Democratic consultants — very active on the battlefield this fall and with 60 years of on-the-ground experience between them — who told me some shocking news.

Separately, and privately, they each told me that they thought the Democrats could lose 70 seats on Tuesday. That would be a blowout of historic proportions.

Well, negative campaigning really is effective campaigning. The results of the election day tomorrow seem to have been premeditated by an overabundance of media slander from both parties. This slander employs logical fallacy as a starting point, an argumentative strategy which provides a truly depressing  outlook on the intelligence of the American public.

Today, citizens, if you vote, vote smart.

Aphex Twin Hoards Six New Albums

Pitchfork Media is reporting that IDM/glitch/electronica virtuoso Richard D. James (or Aphex Twin, AFX, Blue Calx, etc.) has six albums of material that for some reason are just sitting around, not getting released since 2001. James says:

“I’ve got six completed. Two are very non-commercial, abstract, modular-synthesis, field recordings– those I finished four years ago. Another one is Melodies From Mars, which I redid about three years ago. There’s one of stuff I won’t go into, a comp of old tracks which is never really finished and always changing, and then one I’m working on now. There are also loads of tracks which don’t belong anywhere.”

This is flabbergasting news! Being a dork always and forever, I’ll admit that Aphex Twin has enjoyed the role of  “architect” in defining my musical  taste. Despite five years without any new material (James’ last release was the excellent Chosen Lords as APX in 2006), I would point out that the current proliferation of electronica music stems from James’ archetypal catalog of computer-generated sound.

You want evidence? Watch Kanye West’s epic music video (seemingly a visual illustration of his entire new album). He is definitely sampling “Avril 14th” (off James’ 2001 release Drukqs) around the 25-minute mark.

Come on, Richard D. James. You are going to need to release some of this material so that, in ten years, the best hip-hop producers can incorporate it into their sampling repertoire.

Katy, Your Chests are on Fire

Is there anything Katy Perry does that does not involve her breasts?

Vodpod videos no longer available.

DListed reports:

Is there anything Katy Perry’s tits can’t shoot out? Does that mug of Swiss Miss on your desk need a little dressing? Well, Katy Perry’s boobs can spray a dollop of canned whipped cream on that shit. And in her new video for Firework, Katy shows us that we don’t need to pay a visit to The Bang Bang Lady and The Boom Boom Girl, because she can give us an inspirational firework show just by sticking her chest out. Caretitty Stare!

Cougar Tales

Gawker upset some people when they paid an anonymous source for a personal narrative of an almost one night stand with Christine O’Donell. The justification, published the next day, is a defense for their duty to take down the virginal image of the candidate. But when it goes against journalistic principles of transparency, the credibility if the O’Donell’s anonymous ‘victim’ folds.

I could tell when we first met that Christine was older than me. I was 25, and although I never asked her age, I’d have guessed she was in her early 30s. It was only recently that I found out her real age and learned she was in her late 30s when we hooked up. There’s a 14-year gap between us, but she looks good for her age. I don’t think I’d heard the word “cougar” yet at that point, but that’s probably what I’d call her.

This reads like a frat boy’s fish story (lie) after a failed Halloween barely spent with the landlord’s niece. Gawker, hold back, if her lie is as big as you say it is, it will show. You’re poisoning the waves.

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