Noteworthy Tumblr #5: Table For One

Table For One is simple. It has a white background, photos of people eating alone, a title, and that’s about it. However, it elicits some strong feelings from people.

The tumblr didn’t evoke any negative emotions from me, maybe because I eat alone so often. I enjoy eating by myself. You can’t forget that just because you are at a table for one, it doesn’t mean you are alone.


Photo credit: Jerry Hsu

Am I Shortsighted?

Test For Shortsightedness

If you want to check if you need glasses while sitting at your computer, the above image will help you test whether or not you are shortsighted. At normal screen viewing distance you should see the face of the great scientist Albert Einstein. This would indicate you have normal vision. Shortsighted people will see Marilyn Monroe. If you squint, or move a few meters away from your screen (replicating having short-sighted vision) you will see Marilyn Monroe.

The Marylin Einstein hybrid image was created by Dr. Aude Oliva for the March 31st 2007 issue of New Scientist magazine. Other examples of hybrid images can be found in the links below:
Cat/Dog
Cheetah/Tiger
Leopard/Elephant
Dolphin/Car
Astronaut/Scuba Diver (my favorite)

They’re All Made Out Of Ticky-Tacky And They All Look Just The Same

There is a surprising amount of visual diversity in these tract homes in Santa Clara, California. Especially given that all the houses are all located in the same area, are all built during the same decade (1950’s), and all are structured from the same architectural plan. Photographer Julia Baum says of the photo collection,

“Over the past 50 years these Houses have transformed from modest white cubes into a vibrant display of personality and present a rebellion against conformity. My work asserts that human individuality cannot be contained. Inevitably it shines through even the most average facade.”

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Lightning Strike

…At The Speed Of Lightning

Lightning Strike
(Image courtesy of University Of Florida Lightning Research Group)

How lightning works is still pretty much a mystery. But this summer, some large steps to understanding it’s movement were made. Until recently, there wasn’t fast enough camera technology to capture an x-ray image of lightning.

A new camera has a resolution sharp enough to reveal a bright ball of x-rays at the head of the bolt, with almost no lingering radiation along the bolt’s trail. The X-ray glow follows a so-called lightning leader – a channel in the air that forms a path for the lightning. The leader’s charged tip creates an electric field that accelerates electrons almost to the speed of light and causes the X-ray emissions.

The lightning leader is also known as a step leader, because it seems to travel by leaps and bounds rather than in a continuous line. The trail left by the step leader allows negative charge to travel down, even as positively charged leaders travel upward from the ground to meet in the middle. That triggers a so-called return stroke moving upward from the ground toward the cloud – the flash of what human eyes see as lightning.

You can find a lot more lightning stuff on Artifacting.