Picture of the Day: The UnFacebook World?


Artist Ian Wojtowicz created this map by mashing together two existing portrayals of the world, NASA’s The Earth at Night and Facebook’s Friendship Map. By “subtracting” the Facebook map (blacked out areas) from the NASA map, Wojtowicz reveals the parts of the world that are lit up at night but are not linked in to the global social network of Facebook. They appear in bright yellow, in places such as Russia, the Northeast of Brazil, China, Japan, and parts of the Middle East.

See more Pictures of the Day from The Atlantic Online…

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Ever Wonder What Being An Astronaut Is Like? Try This Out…


NASA recently released these spectacular time-lapse videos of Earth, created from thousands of photographs taken by astronauts on board the International Space Station. We’ve edited together the highlights, which include soaring over the Mediterranean, North America, the Middle East, and Africa. Keep an eye out for the red and green aurora borealis and australis over the poles, as well as bursts of lighting in the clouds.

All the videos are courtesy of the Image Science & Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center, and the music is Chopin’s Nocturne No. 2 in E Flat Major, Op. 55, from the public domain music resource Musopen.

For more videos from the International Space Station, visit the Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth.

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Read the full article with more videos at The Atlantic Online…

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Asteroid MD2011 Almost Wipes Out Earth This Week!


Maybe Harold Camping wasn’t completely bonkers…This asteroid is the size of a small city bus, it’s going about 15,000 MPH, and the thing has some serious mass.

A couple days ago the sucker asteroid shows up out of nowhere, and scientists plotted its course less than a couple hours away from what appeared to be a near-certain collision with Earth. Watch the video, then find someone or something you love to hug.

After you’re done hugging, head over to your nearest net-enabled device and fire up the
very-cool “Impact Earth!” Asteroid-Impact Simulator from Purdue University. This web
application allows you to select any point on Earth for destruction by an inbound death
rock from the heavens. Once you’ve set up Doomsday to your personal liking, sit back
and watch the quality animation play out your custom extermination scenario of life on
Earth as we know it. Nice.

Or watch this video of the simulator in action to get acquainted first before you play: