It’s hard to make a true-color family portrait of the solar system. It turns out that most photos of planets aren’t true color! Here's my attempt, using the best NASA photos I could find.
We've been watching the dramatic New Horizons flyby of Pluto over the past few weeks, and many people are saying, "Come on, REALLY. That's a PLANET!"
How small is small? Here's my scale models of the planets and the solar system, in order to help you visualize just how big and just how far away Pluto is.
Here's a tutorial for creating animated gifs from your videos, using VLC media player and Photoshop on Mac OSX.
After a 9-year journey of almost 3 billion miles, the New Horizons Spacecraft has reached Pluto and is sending back images of the mini world and its moons even now. Find out what's being discovered!
Learn how to use Photoshop's Content-Aware Fill to remove unwanted telephone poles, people, and all sorts of blemishes!
Did you know that Macs have had speech recognition commands since 1993? It's not as sophisticated as Siri, but good old Speakable Items is still quite handy and will save your wrists!
No, I do NOT want a phone book, directory, white pages or yellow pages. So how do I stop delivery of phone books to my doorstep? Here's what works...mostly.
Here's an easy guide to a few online tools and apps that I use to tell me when the International Space Station is over my location and where to look to see it!
Black holes are invisible, but matter caught in their death spiral glows brightly. NASA and other telescopes have snapped amazing photos of these monsters at the heart of other galaxies and our own.
While we celebrate the triumphant landing of robot rovers on Mars, let's pause to remember Laika the dog, first living creature from Earth to reach outer space, and her tragic story.
My liveblogging of the landing of the Mars Curiosity Rover on August 5, 2012, while watching live footage from NASA/JPL. (And background info so you understand why it matters and why it's cool!)
What's it like to stand on the surface of Mars? These photos and videos from the latest generation of Martian rovers give us a robot's eye view of an alien landscape.
This guided tour of our solar system explores eight natural wonders, one for each planet, including a few bizarre features you've never seen before!
Take a photographic tour of the ringed planets of our solar system and learn what creates these rings.
Photos and fun information about some of the coolest moons in our solar system besides our own Moon.
Every time you step outside, you're experiencing a miracle. Pause a moment to contemplate just where you're standing.
Have you ever wondered what the Elvish runes mean on the title page of The Lord of the Rings? Let's take a look, and I'll translate them for you!
Once again using a jury-rigged solar filter, I snapped some photos of the transit of Venus across the Sun on June 5, 2012. Learn why this event was so important in the 1800s.
My edition of a beloved anonymous poem, "Carmen Possum," circulated among Latin students for over a hundred years. (Includes vocabulary list for those whose Latin is rusty.)
Before-and-After photos of melting glaciers around the world during the past 50 years reveal amazing views of our changing planet.
Curious what Bellatrix means? How about Karkaroff? Let's take a look at the meanings and origins of some of the character names in Harry Potter!
A photo gallery of planets, galaxies and other wonders I've gleaned from all the NASA missions. A few you'll recognize, but most are pretty obscure.
Four reasons why homes in Texas and nearby tornado-prone states lack basements and storm cellars.
Android technology is farther along than we realize. In addition to the ethical and practical concerns raised by humanlike robots, they reveal and challenge our unconscious impulses, instincts, psychological hangups and kinks.
My patio garden: experiments in shade and square foot planting in southern California.
Fascinating new planetary research, evidence from probes and computer modeling reveal the massive collisions which may have shaped the Earth, Moon, and Mars.
Here's the writing, sketching, drawing, painting, and 3D sculpting iPad apps I use, with screencaps. (And I'll show you how to take an iPad screencap!) Also, my recommendations for stylus and external keyboard for iPads.
Which is correct? Learn the meaning of the phrase "object lesson," and learn why you should shun "abject lessons."
Introduction and mini-quizzes on the Latin first declension and the basic uses of the six Latin cases.
Amazing videos of animals using tools, communicating, and exhibiting simple reasoning that is more than just imitation or learned tricks.
Learn how Pinterest encourages unintentional copyright violations that have real, harmful consequences for artists and photographers.
I had the chance to sail aboard a replica 18th century sailing ship and take photos of a historical vessel you may recognize: The Lady Washington, which appeared in Pirates of the Caribbean. She's lovely -- you have to see these photos!
Have you heard the "your computer has a virus" scam? Whether by phone or online, this is a dangerous fraud that could turn your computer into a zombie working for someone else.
In Dorothy Sayer's Gaudy Night, Latin quotations carry important subtexts that are inaccessible to modern readers. Here are my translations and interpretations of these phrases, to help you discover nuances which dictionaries and online translators cannot give you.
I started on the web in 1992, and I've been building and browsing websites since those days. What's changed? What can we learn, and what successful techniques can we adapt, from those early, clumsy, amateurish Web 1.0 websites?
Catch a falling star... Nov 17-19! The Leonid Meteor Shower is here, November 2011.
Free text-to-speech software is one of the tools I use to improve my own writing. Here's how, why, and where to get it.
My translation of the Latin spells in Harry Potter: not what they do, but what the Latin words mean. Includes a trivia quiz for those studying for their OWLs.
Okay, class, put down your wands! Let's have a little Latin language lesson so we can better understand Harry Potter.
I've been through two 7+ earthquakes since I moved to California in 1996, and 7s don't scare me. However, looking at earthquake maps of the U.S. for the last fifteen years, I've seen something that worries me.
A review of my exercise bike with built-in laptop stand, with commentary from my cat.
How a volcanic eruption in 726 AD off the coast of Greece had a major impact on the history of eastern and western Europe, Christianity, and the spread of Islam.
Why Google's and Facebook's "real names" policies are a danger to many individuals and a misguided attempt to control how we communicate online.
Three Iceland volcanoes of past, present, and future: the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull in 2010, the possibly imminent eruption of Katla, and the exceptional eruption of Laki in 1783 that was perhaps the worst natural disaster in the last 1000 years.
The amazing story of a 3600 year old Minoan wall painting, the civilization that created it, and the incredible catastrophe that preserved it.
Hubpages tags are NOT the same thing as the "keywords" used in SEO. Learn the difference and how to pick good tags.
A thoughtful exploration of the difference between ancient Egypt's paradigm of cyclic stability and our current paradigm of continuous growth. How can we learn from Egypt's example while avoiding stagnation?
A solar flare in 1859 caused power spikes and disrupted the world's telegraph system. How much damage could a massive solar flare do to power and communications today?
I fell in love with volcanoes when I saw Pu'u O'o erupt in Hawai'i in 1986. Here's amazing photos, videos, and a brief summary of the eruption, which is still going today.
A fascinating look into the lives and deaths of stars, and why iron is the most dangerous element in the universe.
Keyword research and on-page search optimization is an art akin to poetry; the trouble is, there's a lot of people out there who write doggerel.