Saturday, April 28, 2007

Onion skin in Flash

I finally figured out how to use onion skin in flash. Flash has many advantages compared to fireworks when it comes about animations. Fireworks it's actually designed for editing pictures but flash it's very confusing and it takes a while to learn even the most basic things. I'm now working on a longer and much more complex animation and I'll post it here when it's done but until then take a look at my first animation in flash. To start the animation click on the picture below.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Earth like planet - Gliese 581 c

In my opinion the new discovery is simply amazing but I wouldn't send the workaholics I mentioned in my previous post to this planet. It makes you wonder if there really is life on other planets and if there is what kind of creatures live there? Where did those creatures come from? Where do WE come from?

Earth-like planet discovery 'may support life'
25/04/2007 - 07:51:11

An Earth-like planet that could be covered in oceans and may support life has been discovered outside the Solar System.

The new world, which is 20.5 light years away, orbits a region with the right temperature to allow liquid water on its surface.

Scientists believe it is only 1.5 times larger and five times more massive than Earth, making it the smallest extra-solar planet known.

But the really exciting discovery is that the planet inhabits the habitable zone of its parent star, Gliese 581.

Also known as the “Goldilocks zone”, this is the narrow orbit in which temperatures are not too hot, not too cold, but just right for surface water to exist as a liquid.

The habitable zone varies according to the heat output of the star, and Gliese 581 is much smaller and colder than the Sun. So even though the planet is 14 times closer to the star than the Earth is to the Sun, it lies in a region where rivers, lakes and oceans are possible.

Liquid water is one of the pre-requisites for life as we know it on Earth.

Dr Stephane Udry, from the Geneva Observatory in Switzerland, who led the European astronomers who announced the find today, said: “We have estimated that the mean temperature of this super-Earth lies between zero and 40 degrees Celsius, and water would thus be liquid.

“Moreover, its radius should be only 1.5 times the Earth’s radius, and models predict that the planet should be either rocky – like our Earth – or covered with oceans.”

The vast majority of planets already discovered orbiting stars outside the Solar System are giant gaseous worlds the size of Jupiter or bigger.

Life as we know it could not exist on these planets. But the new planet is highly unusual because it is so small, and therefore probably rocky. Given its size and location, it is also likely to have an atmosphere.

Two other planets also orbit Gliese 581, which lies in the constellation of Libra and is among the 100 closest stars to the Sun.

One, Gliese 581 B, discovered two years ago, is a Neptune-like planet with 15 Earth-masses so close to the star that it makes an orbit every 5.4 days. The other, Gliese 581 D, has eight times the Earth’s mass and completes an orbit in 84 days. The new planet, with a 13-day orbit, is designated Gliese 581 C, but as yet has no name.

The planet was found by Swiss, French and Portuguese astronomers using the European Southern Observatory’s 3.6 metre telescope at La Silla in Chile.

They employed a method of long-distance planet finding that looks for the “wobble” on a star caused by the gravity of a large object orbiting it.

By measuring the wobble motion, shown as shifts in the star’s light spectrum, astronomers can calculate a planet’s orbit and mass.

Gliese 581 C is certain to be a key target for future missions dedicated to the search for extra-terrestrial life.

“Liquid water is critical to life as we know it,” said Dr Xavier Delfosse, a member of the team from Grenoble University in France. “On the treasure map of the universe, one would be tempted to mark this planet with an X.”

COROT, the first space telescope specifically designed to search for Earth-like rocky planets around stars other than the Sun, was launched by the European Space Agency (ESA) last December.

By 2020 at least one space telescope should be in orbit with the capability of detecting signs of life on planets light years from Earth.

Two such missions, Darwin and the Terrestrial Planet Finder, are planned by ESA and the American space agency Nasa.

Both craft will have instruments sensitive enough to spot water and oxygen on Gliese 581 C, should it exist.

Dr Malcolm Fridlund, ESA project manager for COROT and study scientist on the Darwin project, said: “This is a very important step on the road to finding Earth-like planets. The planets we’ve found so far outside the Solar System have all been different from our own Earth, and more like Jupiter or Neptune.

“If this is a rocky planet it’s very likely that it will have liquid water on its surface, which means there may also be life.

“There are caveats, one being that the environment around a red dwarf is very full of radiation. All red dwarfs have a lot of flare activity, but this doesn’t necessarily exclude life.”

Scientists have calculated that the planet has about double Earth’s gravity. Any creatures living there would therefore be twice as heavy as they would be on Earth.

Their bodies would probably reflect this, said Dr Fridlund. Weak, fragile animals would not be able to support themselves or move around on land.

“Life on Earth evolved to fit the environment through natural selection,” Dr Fridlund added. “With a big pressure you would need a strong skeleton, or shell, or to be soft and malleable.”

Since Gliese 581 is much older than the Sun, life on the planet may have existed for longer than it has on Earth. Tantalisingly, it could therefore be more advanced.

Scientists at the SETI (Search for Extra-Terrestrial Life) Institute in the US are understood to be taking the possibility seriously and turning their radio telescopes towards the planet.

A paper on the discovery has been submitted to the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics.

SETI has already listened for intelligent signals from Gliese 581 on two occasions in 1995 and 1997, as part of a general sweep of stars within 45 light years of Earth.

Spokesman Dr Seth Shostak confirmed that SETI would be tuning in to the star again, using its new Allen telescope array in the Cascade Mountains of north east California.

The Allen array is still under construction but the first 42 of its 350 antennae should be ready for use this summer.

“We’ll be taking another look,” said Dr Shostak. “I suspect it will move to the top of the list.

“I am excited about this discovery. We have assumed all along that small planets will exist in great numbers, and some by chance will be in the habitable zone. But we haven’t been able to find them because the instruments favour big planets.”

He added that having an old star increased the likelihood of intelligent life.

“Life on Earth is four billion years old, and it’s taken all of that to produce us,” he said. “The older the star is, maybe the greater the chance that it has produced something that’s clever.”

Aliens living on the planet would be able to pick up 20-year-old TV and radio transmissions from Earth if they had a receiver powerful enough, he said, but it would be easier for them to detect military radar signals.

Further reading

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


I don't know why girls like so many options but I certainly don't. I always listen to the same music, buy the same sandwich, wear the same clothes. When I see a girl or a woman that can't decide what to choose I don't get angry only when is about computers, it takes me longer. I do believe variety makes our lives a little better but sometimes instead of trying something new and assuming the risk that I might not like it, I just pick the same old things that I know worked for me and always will. I think the best advice to give to somebody who is living an black & white life, living the same routine, doing the same things over and over like a robot is to tell him or her to do something different everyday. It would probably work for me too but I'm way to lazy to do something else and interrupt my everyday activity of wasting time in front of the computer. As a final note, I hope workaholics become robots and go to another planet.

Monday, April 23, 2007

guy puts his phone number on youtube

I saw him on

Internet reporter Jacki Schechner talks to a guy who put his number on YouTube and didn't sleep for 36 hours. (April 23)

I called him and he doesn't answer, the voice mail tells me to leave a message or something like that.

Kinda stupid but it probably works when you're bored to death.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Stupid "hips" (ass) shaking in class

I'm very very lazy and that's why I didn't post anything. The spring break was great but something even greater is... I'M DONE WITH THE STUPID WASL!! :D
The English teacher turned the music on and wanted us, boys, to shake our asses, he said hips, in front of all the girls in the class while they grade us. I didn't do it but I think it was stupid what he told us to do. We are reading "The House on Mango street" and we're now at a chapter about hips and he really wanted to see us how we shake our hips.? I can't see any educational purpose in this. He is my favorite teacher ever because English is the period that seems like 2 minutes. He always talks about anything but what we should study. The truth is, boys can't shake ass like girls. Boys can't really dance, that's what he tried to prove us. We can't really dance, so what? If the English class was boring I would have probably talked to the counselor because what he does is completely non-school activity. The funniest part tough is when a classmate understood what he has to do he said: "I'm not shacking any hoochie coochie!"

Just for the record, these days happened:
- massacre at Virginia Tech College
- Basescu, the president of Romania suspended

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

about me and school

Although I hate many pictures/videos crowded in my last blog posts I didn't blog because I didn't feel like. School is harsh this month and I have the math WASL in about 2 weeks. I'm sooooooooooooo sick of school and I can't wait the vacation. There's a debate going on if failing the math WASL means you cannot graduate but I'll do my best anyway and I'm really glad the science WASL is not required for sure. I completely suck at math and I know the math WASL will be much harder than the English WASL I had. I've learned some things about me since my last post. I rarely remember something if I don't specifically think that I need to remember but I easely remember visual things. I can't learn a phone number as fast as I can memorize a scene from a movie and... hmmm I already forgot the second thing. I didn't specifically think that I need to memorize it. I guess I'm just tired. This is another thing but I've noticed it long time ago. I can't learn or do homework if it's a lot. I really can't. I look at it and I say: this is to much, I can't do it, and I'm not doing any of it. I'm like an computer to which is given to many tasks at the same time. I freeze, or something like that. It sometimes happens but I'm glad I don't always get that much homework or stuff to learn. I can't get school out of my head and I'm really stressed with all the homework and everything. I always say to myself: what did I forget now? Can't wait for the 1 week break coming next week...