(Click here for posts on geophysics and the energy industry.)
Strange Maps: Where On Earth Was Middle-earth?
"Created by Tolkien somewhere in the 1930s, the map shows the 'mortal lands' of Middle-earth, which according to Tolkien himself is part of our own Earth, but in a previous, mythical era."
The Tacoma News Tribune: A horror movie come to life.
"Cell phone technology allows remote monitoring of calls, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. Known as a ‘roving bug,’ it works whether a phone is on or off. FBI agents tracking organized crime have used it to monitor meetings among mobsters. Global positioning systems, installed in many cell phones, also make it possible to pinpoint a phone's location within a few feet."
"According to James M. Atkinson, a Massachusetts-based expert in counterintelligence who has advised the U.S. Congress on security issues, it's not that hard to take remote control of a wireless phone."
"Your friends totally hit on us when you turn your back for a second. We don't tell you because we don't want to cause problems since we know you've been friends forever and the likelihood of us being around for more than a few months is pretty slim, and also because your friends are pretty hot."
"In Texas, you need to register the purchase of Erlenmeyer flasks or three-necked beakers. The same state where I do not have to register a handgun, forces me to register a glass beaker."
> It's so aggrevating to try to buy Sudafed. I don't think they even sell the bottles with 100 pills anymore.
NYT: Slideshow -- Gamers and their online avatars.
Houston Chronicle: June sky likely to delight.
"Summer officially begins June 21. There are plenty of attractions for stargazers."
LA Times: In Saudi Arabia, a view from behind the veil.
"‘Excuse me,’ hissed the voice in my ear. ‘You can't sit here.’ The man from the counter had appeared at my elbow. He was glaring." ...
"Like the segregated South of a bygone United States, today's Saudi Arabia shunts half the population into separate, inferior and usually invisible spaces."
Onion Radio News: World's Scientists Admit They Just Don't Like Mice.
It looks like someone is changing their tune --
"‘The United States is taking the lead, and that's the message I'm going to take to the G-8,’ Mr. Bush said.
"But how well that message will be received remains to be seen. Germany, backed by Britain and now Japan, has already proposed cutting global greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent by 2050."
> Apparently everyone didn't get the memo --
LA Times: NASA chief not worried about global warming.
"In a series of reports this year, the thousands of scientists who make up the panel warned of an apocalyptic future -- widespread drought, rising sea levels, more frequent hurricanes and mass extinctions by the end of the century -- if the world did not act soon to curb its emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases."