First interstellar visitor described as an ‘oddball’

The first object ever known to enter our solar system from beyond is not your average asteroid or comet.

We all know what asteroids and comets look like, right? Well the thing that came hurtling into our solar system from interstellar space in mid-October does not look like that.

Originally known as A2017 U1, the odd object from beyond was first discovered by Karen Meech and her team from University of Hawaii’s Institute for Astronomy, using the Pan-STARRS1 survey telescope on Haleakala in Hawai’i. Now given the more poetic Hawaiian name of ‘Oumuamua – which loosely means “a messenger that reaches out from the distant past” – the interspace guest was only about 85 times the Earth-Moon distance away when it was first observed.

Now that the researchers have had more time to study it using the Gemini Observatory, they have determined that it is indeed unlike anything we would expect from our own little corner of the universe.

“This thing is an oddball,” says Meech in a statement from Gemini.

“What we found was a rapidly rotating object, at least the size of a football field, that changed in brightness quite dramatically,” she says. “This change in brightness hints that ‘Oumuamua could be more than 10 times longer than it is wide – something which has never been seen in our own Solar System.”

“While study of ‘Oumuamua’s colors shows that this body shares characteristics with both Kuiper Belt objects and organic-rich comets and trojan asteroids,” says Meech, “its orbital path says it comes from far beyond.”

While ‘Oumuamua has quickly slipped away form view, loads of data was collected and it gives scientists a rare glimpse into the rocky flying things (scientific term there, really) of other worlds

“These observations allow us to reach into another planetary system to learn about one of its rocky bodies, and compare this object with the asteroids we know throughout our own Solar System,” says Faith Vilas from the National Science Foundation.

And fortunately for all fans of oddball interstellar interlopers, there will likely be news of more in the near future. The authors of the study describing ‘Oumuamua write that “immanent upgrades to contemporary asteroid survey instruments and improved data processing techniques are likely to produce more interstellar objects in the upcoming years.”

The research paper, A brief visit from a red and extremely elongated interstellar asteroid, was published in Nature.

Watch an artist’s video representation and listen to the excited scientists at NASA’s JPL talk about the quirky rock in the video below.

Source Article from

Activist Photographs Ex-Lab Rats And Mice Going Outside For The First Time, And It’s Beautiful

By  Amanda Froelich Truth Theory

No human wants to live their life in a cage. So why do we carelessly subject animals — such as rats and mice — to the same fate? With today’s technological advancements, there is no longer any reasons animals need to be experimented on. Fortunately, this attitude is becoming more common.

One individual who believes all animals should be free is Rachele Totaro. Last summer, she spent her time photographing ex-lab rats and mice who breathed fresh air for the first time ever. She wrote on Bored Panda: “My little models were test animals, just saved by La Collina dei Conigli, Italian charity based near Milan. Every year in Italy, hundreds of thousands of animals die in laboratories. Some are used for lethal tests, but most could be saved: many are used for experiments from which they could easily recover and restart normal life, others are not actually used in test, but are kept in laboratories as a surplus of safety or control, and once the experiment has ended they become “a useless expense” for labs.”

The activist wrote that Italian law allows experimental laboratories not to kill healthy and “salvable” animals, but to give them to individuals or charity. Associations deal directly with the laboratories to secure retirement plans for the rodents. Fortunately, a handful have been adopted by La Collina Dei Conigli.

Totaro wrote, “I have been supporting this charity for years now with my pictures as a volunteer photographer (I am also a proud member of HeArts Speak network, a nonprofit organization that’s uniting art and advocacy to increase the visibility of shelter animals).” Totaro feels kinship with the organization, as its motto is: “Creating a world where no shelter animal goes unseen”.

For the photographs, the activist drew inspiration from Alice in Wonderland, The Little Prince, and other fairytales. She loves merging fantastical scenes with the rescued rodents, because “even if there’s so much wrong around, sometimes, reality can become better than fiction.”

The beautiful photos show the rats and mice feeling the sun on their fur for the first time. The images also capture their curiosity for a brand new world, and how relaxed they are to finally not be in a cage. Totaro added, “Shy ones, little warriors, curious explorers, cuddle-lovers: everyone acted in a different way when taken outdoors, and they showed once again that they are not mere numbers, as they are considered in labs, but individuals with peculiar attitudes and personalities.”

Following are photos of ex-lab rats and mice going outside of the first time:

What are your thoughts? Please comment below and share this news!

Source: Bored Panda

Image Credit: Facebook

I am Luke Miller, content manager at Truth Theory and creator of Potential For Change. I like to blend psychology and spirituality to help you create more happiness in your life.Grab a copy of my free 33 Page Illustrated eBook- Psychology Meets Spirituality- Secrets To A Supercharged Life You Control Here

Source Article from

Take a first look at Peter Frampton discussing the talk box on ‘The Big Interview with Dan Rather’ Nov. 21 on AXS TV

Grammy-winning English rocker Peter Frampton talks with legendary newsman Dan Rather about his groundbreaking use of the talk box in the attached first look clip of Frampton’s guest appearance on “The Big Interview,” which airs Nov. 21 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT on AXS TV. In the upcoming all-new installment, Frampton will discuss his prolific career, including how he was first introduced to the instrument which he used at a live show during “Do You Feel Like We Do” and it eventually became part of his signature sound.

In the preview clip, Frampton tells Rather how producer Peter Drake introduced him to the talk box while he worked on George Harrison’s 1970 debut solo album All Things Must Pass at Abbey Road Studios. “He gets out this little box [he had custom made]… puts the pipe in his mouth, and all of a sudden the pedal steel starts singing to me and talking to me out of his mouth,” Frampton says, “And it’s the most incredible sound I had ever heard.”

Frampton loved the sound so much, that he developed his own talk box brand called “Framptone.” To date, he is considered one of the best talk box performers in music history.

Dan Rather will discuss other aspects of Frampton’s iconic career, which spans more than five decades and has produced a stream of classic rock songs including “Breaking All the Rules,” “Baby, I Love Your Way,” and “I’m in You.” They’ll also talk about his longtime friendship (which began in school) with the late, great David Bowie. Frampton’s most recent album, Acoustic Classics, dropped in 2016. Watch Frampton’s entire in-depth conversation on the next all-new episode of “The Big Interview with Dan Rather” on Tuesday, Nov. 21 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT on AXS TV. Stay tuned to AXS for Peter Frampton updates.

Source Article from

Indian stocks surge on Moody’s first upgrade in 14 years

The step energized the bulls on Dalal Street as the benchmark Sensex shot up over 400 points, and the Nifty50 touched the 10,300 mark in early trading on Friday. Some of the gains were clipped later in the day.

The agency raised India’s rating to Baa2 from Baa3 and changed its outlook on the rating to stable from positive. S&P and Fitch Ratings have India a rung above junk. Moody’s also lifted the national currency’s senior unsecured rating to Baa2 from Baa3 with its short-term local currency rating improved to P-2 from P-3.

“The decision to upgrade the ratings is underpinned by Moody’s expectation that continued progress on economic and institutional reforms will, over time, enhance India’s high growth potential and its large and stable financing base for government debt, and will likely contribute to a gradual decline in the general government debt burden over the medium term,” the agency’s press release says.

At the same time, Moody’s says India’s high debt burden remains a constraint on the country’s credit profile with the government’s reform measures reducing the risk of a sharp increase in indebtedness.

India’s economy is one of the fastest growing in the world. The country is on the way to growth of up to eight percent next year, according to Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. The minister said the major negative impact from the back-to-back policy reforms of demonetization and the goods and services tax rollout had declined.

According to Moody’s, real GDP growth will moderate to 6.7 percent in the fiscal year ending in March 2018 and will rise to 7.5 percent in the next financial year with similarly robust levels of growth from 2019 onward.

“Longer term, India’s growth potential is significantly higher than most other Baa-rated sovereigns,” the agency said.

Source Article from

A visit to London’s first zero waste store

Bulk opened at the end of August and has been doing a brisk business ever since.

London’s first-ever zero waste store is located on Kingsland Road in Hackney. The storefront is simple and subtle, with one small sign indicating its name, Bulk, and an attractive window display of fresh pastries, loaves of multigrain bread, and baskets of beautiful produce to draw in curious passersby.

Inside, Bulk feels like an oasis, far from the four lanes of rushing traffic just outside the door and the flashing, gaudy signs of neighboring stores. This is zero waste land, after all, a place where conscientious shoppers come to escape the trappings of consumerism and buy products in their purest form.

Bulk window© K Martinko

I went to see Bulk this week, having written about its launch several months ago. I met Ingrid Caldironi, the founder, and her new business partner, Bruna. Together, we talked about the zero waste scene in London, how Bulk is doing, and what the future holds.

People have been wonderfully receptive, Caldironi told me. Saturdays are the busiest shopping day, with some people traveling an hour and a half on the train to buy food. Those who walk in unprepared can purchase bottles or bags, or use a jar from the donated ‘jar bank’. For the most part, though, people have read about the store online and come equipped.

I am impressed by the variety of products. Bulk sells loose eggs, cheese, olive oil, vinegar, dry goods, spices, coffee, dog food, toilet paper, and solid oils and butters, among other things. Caldironi is diligent about sourcing within a 100-mile range, although a few imported products come from France and the Netherlands — “no bananas flown in from Dominican Republic.”

Bulk store floor© K Martinko

organic eggs© K Martinko

When asked about health and safety regulations, so often touted by Canadian supermarkets as the reason for not allowing customers to refill their own containers, Caldironi said no such rules exist in Britain. She did extensive research and was inspected by the health authority, which loved her concept.

“It’s not about regulations. It’s about the supermarkets’ own policies. There’s nothing in health regulations that says we can’t refill, or that it’s unsafe, or that it’s unhygienic.”

Caldironi also takes pre-sale packaging into consideration. Most dry goods come in paper bags; olive oil comes in tins; and cleaning products come in refillable plastic jugs. This means Bulk cannot be called a ‘plastic-free’ store, but Caldironi said that’s not the point: “Our goal is to shorten the supply chain in order to reduce the overall amount of plastic.”

zero waste sign© K Martinko — The funky custom-made sign that hangs above the till

Not everything has gone smoothly. A crowdfunding campaign failed to meet its target, and the current location is only a pop-up, its lease expiring at the end of this year, but Caldironi remains optimistic. She has secured a new commission fund that will allow her to get a lease elsewhere, but still needs to raise money to equip a larger space.

Once she gets that, she plans to outfit the store with reclaimed fabrics from the Royal Opera Company and install countertops made from upcycled yogurt pots. The new space will include a composting facility and a room for community workshops.

How did her zero waste journey start? Surprisingly, Caldironi formerly worked in marketing for the oil industry, “helping convenience retailers set up shops in service stations.” After reading an article about Lauren Singer (founder of Trash is for Tossers), she wanted to live differently. Eventually she quit her job to open Bulk and is now “living the perfect life.”

Ingrid & Bruna© K Martinko — Ingrid & Bruna, business partners in zero waste

But she realizes that zero waste shopping alone won’t save the world. The biggest problem is design:

“It’s absurd that people pay to hold rubbish that’s the end product of an item manufactured by a company. [It’s the company that] should be responsible for it, not the people who are paying taxes for all the infrastructure required to recycle it.”

Until then, her store will smooth the way for the many shoppers who do wish to reduce their trash and who deserve retailers that support that goal.

Source Article from

Chronicled tour of Mexico’s first female indigenous presidential candidate


Something subtle happens when the spokeswoman of the Indigenous Council of Government travels through the Zapatista communes or caracoles in the state of Chiapas. Since the beginning of her tour on October 14, we were able to witness, for the first time in 23 years, Zapatista militants and sympathizers greeting a civilian with welcoming parties of joy, with words of fraternity and with mobilizations from the grassroots.

But beyond these overt signs, there’s another thing happening. A re-composition of the social forces, of the grassroots and their independent organizations-that is, those that are far from the ruling party-and despite having links with political parties and with a sector of the Catholic church that preaches liberation, came out to welcome María del Jesús Patricio Martínes, better known as Marichuy, the spokeswoman and presidential candidate.

On October 15, we went to Caracol 4, in Morelia, the meeting point of thousands of people from the Zapatista grassroots, hundreds more from the Movement in Defense of Life and Territory (Modevite) and another peasant front. From towns of Ocosingo to Altamirano, all along the road we saw banners and signs that invited everyone to the public events that were going to be held in the region featuring Marichuy – spokeswoman of the Indigenous Council of Government (CIG), which is made up of the National Indigenous Council (CNI) and the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN).

Along the way, we saw that something unusual was happening. As we entered the caracol, we saw two columns of people that went all the way to the headquarters, who were holding a big sign that welcomed Marichuy. They were there in the thousands, and, although we didn’t notice at first, they were not only Zapatistas but there were also members of other organizations too.

The opening events were scheduled for 11 am, but neither the long wait nor the tenacious rain managed to dampen the enthusiasm of the crowd. Occasionally a band played music.

Finally after 4 pm the convoy of buses and pickup trucks that transported the spokeswoman and the CIG Council members arrived. People welcomed Marichuy, who was their candidate. They were excited to see the person who would represent them in the media and in the national elections-the face of thousands maybe millions, whose face is never on camera and whose voice is never in front of the microphones of the corpoate media.

We were trying to remember when was the last time when Zapatista people had organized a massive welcome party like this one for a civilian who was not a part of their communes, and we kept going back to 1994, when Cuauhtémoc Cárdenas placed foot for the first-and I believe the last-time on the rebellious Zapatista land. That year, the EZLN made an agreement to support the candidacy of the engineer, without compromising the essence of the organization’s project. Now, in Marichuy’s tour, the Zapatistas are not only making a commitment of support, but they are also redesigning their structure and their alliances. While many may have seen this as only another election, now they see an alternative and an opportunity to grow and strengthen their organization with the CNI.

Marichuy’s visit here was brief but intense. Thousands of indigenous people radiating joy, hope and expectation as they saw for the first time the face of a comrade who carries on her shoulders a heavy and difficult commitment; to faithfully represent all of their voices.

Children, youth, elderly, entire families had gathered to greet her, to welcome her. We saw how Zapatista generations see this project as a way to renew themselves.

Marichuy spoke from the back of a huge truck that had been especially modified to act as a stage. She was flanked by the “founding mothers” of the organization, the women who helped create the EZLN. I thought that maybe the truck was a bit too big, rendering her too far from the thousands of people that waved at her for a kilometer as she went by.

Marichuy’s face didn’t hide the enormous responsibility of her task. I wouldn’t want to be in her shoes, but I would like to know her thoughts, to hear what her inner voice is saying when she looks at all those people, when she feels the heartwarming appreciation of those who build, day after day, a political project that continues to be a national example; an experience that, despite its contradictions and limitations, is unprecedented; and that continues to resist through growth and construction.

Many mass media outlets are trying to group Marichuy and the CIG in with the candidates of other parties, but they are wrong, because when they interview Marichuy it’s not her that they are talking to; she is the carrier of the word of those who resist big capital, big chiefs, organized crime, corrupt politicians, the government mafia, the plundering and the violation of their rights everyday.

She’s not a candidate for president-she’s a spokeswoman who has the task of transporting the denunciation, promoting the local and national organization from the grassroots, from the places where life in community and sharing make us belong, where necessity and disgrace urge the bases to organize and empower themselves. Media make their polls and try to make Marichuy’s image fit into their existing world of symbols and codes, where all candidates are individual characters who stand for themselves and in consequence are vulnerable or even corruptible.

The media and political system try to carry struggles to the arena of individuals-collectivities and social subjects are outside the radar for TV viewers, newspaper readers and radio listeners-because individuals are vulnerable, they can be neutralized, they are the weakest link in the chain.

Although Marichuy’s tour is the beginning of an unusual campaign for the CIG, the Council members of the organization have a huge task ahead: to join their efforts in processes of organization, to unite their indignation and transform it into participation, to inject their differences into common platforms. It is a righteous attempt in 2018 to have a campaign that exposes the powerful and their true form and also puts forward the reasonable demands of the dispossessed-because what they ask for is essentially justice, which is something that nobody can be against, or at least not publicly, not reasonably.

Since the beginning of this process, the Zapatistas began to form alliances and to strengthen areas and regions-the CNI is expected to do the same. After leaving the Zapatista caracoles, after leaving Chiapas, Marichuy and the CIG have an enormous challenge ahead. The strength of the Zapatistas alone is not enough to face the obstacles ahead. The electoral process is a road loaded with many landmines, which their rivals have traversed for many years, and have no moral or ethical limits to reach their goals-many of their supporters are fanatics with academic degrees, and they have “opinion leaders” and business partners who won’t skimp on resources to sustain the economic and cultural model against a handful of “indians”.

There is widespread speculation that “all politicians are the same”, “politics is shit”, “why try if nothing’s going to change”, sentiment which only serves to demobilize the people and paralyze political action. But the CIG is going to try to promote a battle beyond the borders of the oppressed and subversive territories of Mexico. Can we lose everything in this attempt? It’s possible, but it would be worse not to try.

The way in which Caracol 4, in Morelia, welcomed Marichuy and the CIG is one more sign of the vitality of Zapatismo and the people in resistance, who have realized that they need to redefine politics and grassroots participation. The candidate tries to infuse dignity into politics and to allow a space for the participation of the indigenous peoples at the national level. In a scenario full of adversity for the people due to the growth of the economic model of exploitation and impunity at all levels of government, they need to prove that the rules of the game are not viable, to make the unfair system crack and build power in the places that the establishment tries to annihilate.

Source Article from

Lamborghini creates world’s first ‘self-healing’ sports car


Lamborghini has created the world’s first self-healing sports car. The Terzo Millennio, which translates as third millennium in Italian, has the ability to detect and repair cracks in its body work.

Using sensors the car can conduct its own health check to detect any damages and self-repair itself by filling the crack with nanotubes to prevent it spreading.

The super car was created in collaboration with researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Boston.

Stefano Domenicali, manager and CEO of Lamborghini, said: “Collaborating with MIT for our research and development department is an exceptional opportunity to do what Lamborghini has always been very good at – rewriting the rules on super sports cars.

“Now we are presenting an exciting and progressive concept car.

“We are inspired by embracing what is impossible today to craft the realities of tomorrow; Lamborghini must always create the dreams of the next generation.”

The all-electric car is powered by supercapacitors rather than conventional batteries.


The car has an energy storage system which allows it to rapidly charge and hold more power than a battery.

Professor Mircea Dinca, from the MIT, added: “The new Lamborghini collaboration allows us to be ambitious and think outside the box in designing new materials that answer energy storage challenges for the demands of an electric sport vehicle. We look forward to teaming up with their engineers and work on this exciting project.”

The supercapacitors are made using carbon enabling them to be formed into the car’s body panels as they are smaller and lighter than conventional batteries.

Each of the car’s wheels includes its own integrated electric engine that glow as you drive.

The project started a year ago, Mr Domenicali added: “Exactly one year ago we have signed an agreement with the MIT-Italy Program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology which marked the start of a collaboration between two outstanding entities for the creation of a project that intends to write an important page in the future of super sports cars for the third millennium.”

Source Article from

Michigan University Becomes First To Offer Marijuana Degree

By Fattima Mahdi Truth Theory

Would you devote four years to studying marijuana? Well, now you can do just that. Northern Michigan University is believed to be the first university in the United States to offer a Bachelor of Science degree in the study of marijuana. As a student, you can take classes in finance, science and marketing. Stoners need not apply!

The program is called Medical Plant Chemistry and is bound to induce higher learning. Though there are several accredited colleges and universities that offer both credit and noncredit courses in marijuana, Northern Michigan University is the first to offer a degree. Their program is unique and includes chemistry, biology, botany, horticulture and more. Students who enrol on this program will learn how to measure and extract compounds in the plants that can be used for medicinal purposes. They will then be able to transfer the knowledge from growing other medicinal plants to marijuana.

“The historical stigma associated with cannabis is quickly vanishing,” says the school’s website, “and although there is a surge in businesses related to the marijuana economy, there is a major gap in educational opportunities available to prepare people for this field.”

Last year, Brandon Canfield, Associate Chemistry Professor, attended an annual American Chemical Society meeting and this gave him an idea. “I heard all about the need for analytical chemists (in the cannabis industry) and all sorts of interesting talks. That was the initial spark,” he said.

“We’ve had an overwhelming response from growing operations, dispensaries and other businesses who want to take on our students as interns,” Canfield said, adding that a stereotypical stoner need not apply.” He went on to say that “obviously, the program is new and different and it might speak to a certain crowd. But for a student to succeed, they’re going to have to be very dedicated and motivated. This is not an easy program. It’s a really intense, biology and chemistry program.”

Read more: 25 Health Benefits Of Marijuana You Won’t Learn From Mainstream Media

Image Credit: Copyright: epicstockmedia / 123RF Stock Photo

I am Luke Miller, content manager at Truth Theory and creator of Potential For Change. I like to blend psychology and spirituality to help you create more happiness in your life.Grab a copy of my free 33 Page Illustrated eBook- Psychology Meets Spirituality- Secrets To A Supercharged Life You Control Here

Source Article from