SpaceX to Fly Passengers On Private Trip Around the Moon in 2018
By Calla Cofield
SpaceX will fly two private citizens on a trip around the moon in 2018, the company’s founder Elon Musk announced Monday (Feb. 27).
The private spaceflight company will use its Falcon Heavy rocket to send the two paying passengers into space aboard one of the company’s Dragon spacecraft. The two private citizens, who have not yet been named, approached SpaceX about taking a trip around the moon, and have “already paid a significant deposit” for the cost of the mission, according to a statement from the company. The names of the two individuals will be announced later, pending the result of initial health tests to ensure their fitness for the mission, the statement said. [SpaceX’s Crew Dragon Spacecraft in Pictures]
“Like the Apollo astronauts before them, these individuals will travel into space carrying the hopes and dreams of all humankind, driven by the universal human spirit of exploration,” SpaceX representatives said in the statement.
The two passengers will be the only people on board what is expected to be about a weeklong trip around the moon, according to Musk, who spoke with reporters during a phone conference today.
CBS Studios International Announces Licensing Agreement with WOWWOW in Japan
CBS Studios International announced today a multi-title content licensing agreement with Japan’s leading premium pay TV provider, WOWOW. The agreement includes the first-window broadcast rights to the highly anticipated new TWIN PEAKS; the #1 new U.S. drama BULL, starring Michael Weatherly; and the murder-mystery series AMERICAN GOTHIC.
BULL, TWIN PEAKS and AMERICAN GOTHIC will be shown on WOWOW’s Prime channel, joining other Showtime and CBS programming, including the critically-acclaimed THE AFFAIR, the event series ZOO and the modern-day SHERLOCK Holmes drama, ELEMENTARY.
“The series in this agreement represent the strength and variety of CBS and Showtime programming available to broadcasters around the world,” said Barry Chamberlain, President of Sales, CBS Studios International. “We are thrilled to have expanded our portfolio of programming with WOWOW, bringing more of our compelling and creative storytelling to audiences across Japan.”
AMERICAN GOTHIC centers on a prominent Boston family reeling in the wake of the chilling discovery that someone in their midst is linked to an infamous string of murders. As shocking secrets from the past and present are revealed, their mounting SUSPICION and paranoia that one of them is a killer threatens to tear THE FAMILY apart.
AMERICAN GOTHIC is executive produced by Corinne Brinkerhoff, Justin Falvey, Darryl Frank, James Frey and Todd Cohen, produced by CBS Television Studios and distributed internationally by CBS Studios International.
Police to quiz girlfriend over British UFO conspiracy theorist’s mystery death after he vomited two litres of black fluid
A science fiction writer will be quizzed by police on suspicion of killing a British conspiracy theorist who died suddenly on her sofa.
Max Spiers, 39, sought to expose government cover-ups and investigated UFO sightings — after, his mum says, he saw “the darker side” as a child.
The dad-of-two, from Canterbury, Kent, visited Poland to speak at a conference before he died at partner Monika Duval’s home 24 hours later in July 2016.
He vomited two litres of a black fluid before he died, his inquest heard in December.
Now prosecutors have opened an investigation into involuntary manslaughter and want to speak to his girlfriend, who was present at the time of Mr Spiers’s death.
These 10 Unrealized Artworks Would Have Been Spectacular
BY ABIGAIL CAIN
Image by James Corner Field Operations, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, and Jeff Koons. Courtesy of Friends of the High Line.
Jeff Koons, Train
So far, all attempts to realize Koons’s 161-foot-tall sculpture have run out of steam. The American artist first proposed the work—a full-size replica of a 1940s locomotive, suspended nose-down from a crane while periodically spinning its wheels and belching smoke—to French billionaire art collector François Pinault in the early 2000s. But when Pinault’s plans for a museum on the Seine fell through in 2005, Koons’s idea was once again up for grabs. Both LACMA and Friends of the High Line expressed interest in the massive work; in fact, LACMA spent more than $2 million in feasibility studies, finally determining that Train “was safe, possible, and more complicated than anyone thought.” The High Line picked up the project in 2008 and again in 2012, only to see it derail both times. The likely culprit: an estimated cost of $25 million to $50 million.
Camille Paglia on Oscar Glamour Then and Now: “Grandeur of Old Hollywood Is Gone” (Guest Column)
by Camille Paglia
Terry O’Neill/Getty Images; Peter Kramer/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty Images
The social critic and author of the upcoming ‘Free Women, Free Men: Sex, Gender, Feminism,’ writes that Elizabeth Taylor’s 1961 win was “a huge cultural watershed, a prefiguration of the coming sexual revolution,” which predated a new generation of “hip, smart and cynical” stars.
As a child, I had two pagan high holy days every year. The first was Halloween, where I advertised my transgender soul by masquerading as a matador, a Roman soldier, Napoleon or Hamlet. The second was Oscar night, when Hollywood put its dazzling glamour on heady display for the whole world.
As I was growing up in the drearily conformist 1950s and early ’60s, it was hard to find information about popular culture, which wasn’t taken seriously. Deep-think European art films were drawing tiny coteries of intellectuals to small, seedy theaters, but flamboyant mainstream Hollywood was still dismissed as crass, commercial trash.
Moby Has Just Released Four Hours Worth Of Free Music Designed For Yoga And Meditation
Moby (Richard Melville Hall), is an American DJ, singer, songwriter, musician, photographer and animal rights activist. He is well known for his electronic music, veganism, and support of animal rights.
Recently on his website he released a series of ambient recording designed to help people feel a great calmness. This is what he said on his website ;
Andy Warhol’s Death: Not So Simple, After All
By BLAKE GOPNIK
Credit: Associated Press
“Pop Icon Andy Warhol Dies After Routine Surgery” ran the headline in The Houston Chronicle. Time magazine questioned how “the country’s most famous pop artist dies in a prestigious big-city hospital after a rather routine gallbladder operation.”
A routine surgery: Some version of that story was repeated around the world in the days and decades after the death of the 58-year-old artist, the 30th anniversary of which is on Wednesday.
Dr. John Ryan, a medical historian and retired surgeon, has recast the story line. “This was major, major surgery — not routine — in a very sick person,” Dr. Ryan, emeritus chief of surgery at Virginia Mason Hospital in Seattle, said in a recent phone interview.
Milo Ventimiglia’s ‘Relationship Status’ Gets Two More Seasons on Verizon’s Go90 (EXCLUSIVE)
COURTESY OF STYLEHAUL
The show was created by Céline Geiger (“Vampire Diaries,” “The Lying Game”). It’s executive produced by Ventimiglia — who currently stars in NBC’s primetime hit drama “This Is Us” — and Russ Cundiff of DiVide Pictures; James Frey and Todd Cohen of Full Fathom Five; and StyleHaul.
Go90 has picked up two 12-episode seasons of “Relationship Status,” which will feature a traditional film and TV talent alongside digital creators. Season 2 is slated to hit the free, ad-supported service in the fall of 2017; the producers expect to announce cast details soon. As with the first run of the show, the ensemble dramedy will weave through the complexities of relationships while exploring the intertwining lives and connections of dating in the digital age.
“We could not be happier to continue ‘Relationship Status’ into season two and three,” Ventimiglia said in a statement. “The landscape of online dating and social media is ever-changing and we are looking forward to bringing more compelling stories about love, life and loss to Go90.”
Is California overdue for biblical, catastrophic flooding? History says it could be
By Katie Dowd
Sacramento underwater due to floods in an 1862 rendering that ran in local papers.
Californians are always talking about the coming Big One, but what if the big one is a flood, not an earthquake?
With this recent cavalcade of rainstorms, there’s been renewed interest in a 2011 USGS study on the so-called “ARkStorm.” In it, the USGS lays out a case for a hypothetical “megastorm,” one that could cause up to $725 billion in damage and impact a quarter of California’s homes.
The ARkStorm would bring with it catastrophic rains, hurricane-force winds and hundreds of landslides. Central Valley flooding alone is projected to span 300 miles.
If that sounds far-fetched, there’s historic precedent: Geological evidence indicates that California endures massive flooding caused by atmospheric rivers every 100-200 years. And settlers who moved to California after the Gold Rush soon found what the native population had known for centuries: Northern California is prime flooding territory.
The most prominent example is the Great Flood of 1862, a natural disaster that still ranks as the largest flood in the history of the American West. Between Dec. 1861 and Jan. 1862, the West Coast received a near-constant deluge of rain. Sacramento received a stunning 23 inches in that period, turning the city into a watery ghost town.
“The people are leaving the city as rats would a sinking ship” the Red Bluff Independent wrote on Jan. 14.
Oroville Dam’s untested emergency spillway activated. Flows to continue ‘40 to 56 hours’
BY DALE KASLER
Water began pouring over the emergency spillway at Oroville Dam early Saturday for the first time in its 48-year history. State officials continued to say they don’t expect the situation to result in flooding in the town of Oroville or other communities downstream.
Unable to release enough water from the dam’s heavily damaged main spillway, officials with the California Department of Water Resources announced that water from the storm-swollen reservoir started flowing over the adjacent emergency spillway at around 8 a.m. Department spokesman Doug Carlson said water was pouring over the emergency structure in what initially was a steady, relatively gentle flow.
Sprout Greenlights New Series ‘Remy And Boo’; Renews ‘Floogals’ & ‘Nina’s World’; Sets Development Slate
Sprout, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment’s 24-hour preschool network, is expanding its original programming slate with the greenlight of new series Remy and Boo created by Industrial Brothers’ Matt Fernandes and produced by Industrial Brothers and Boat Rocker Studios. The network also has given Season 2 renewals to its popular original series Floogals and Nina’s World and set several new projects in development, including an original series executive produced by Shaquille O’Neal.
Among the new projects on Sprout’s development slate are Little Shaq, executive produced by Shaquille O’Neal. Inspired by the former NBA superstar’s real life childhood, the series follows an outsized boy’s funny and often awkward adventures in his urban American neighborhood. From Universal Cable Productions, the series is also executive produced by Full Fathom Five’s James Frey and Todd Cohen.
Army drone missing from Arizona found in Colorado
A drone like the one that disappeared is seen in this image provided by the U.S. Army / U.S. ARMY/CBS DENVER
DENVER — An Army drone that disappeared on a training flight in southern Arizona has been found about 600 miles away in Colorado, and the military is trying to figure out how it got there.
Officials at Fort Huachuca, Arizona, say a hiker found the $1.5 million Shadow drone stuck in a tree in the mountains west of Denver Thursday. It was missing a wing.
Soldiers lost contact with the drone at Fort Huachuca nine days earlier. A search failed to find it, and the Army concluded it probably crashed and disintegrated in the area.
Infernal Machines: The Bombing of the Los Angeles Times and L.A.’s First ‘Crime of the Century’
Bombed-out building of the Los Angeles Times at First Street and Broadway, 1910 | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
It never fails to astound me. The tales we remember collectively. And the stories we forget. I first learned of the 1910 bombing of the Los Angeles Times on a walk around Hollywood Forever Cemetery. There, next to graves of the Otises and Chandlers, is a grand monument to “Our martyred men,” the 20 employees of the Los Angeles Times who had lost their lives in the early morning hours of Saturday, October 1, 1910. There is a list of the deceased, fourteen of whose remains are buried beneath the monument. They had been hard at work at the Times’ headquarters, often called “The Fortress,” on the northeast corner of First and Broadway, when a series of dry blasts starting at 1:07 a.m. shook downtown Los Angeles to its foundations.
When I was growing up my father ran a paper and a printing press. I spent many happy nighttime hours at the press — running in and out of the revolving doors of the dark room and climbing on the great rolls of newspaper. I can still remember the smell of the ink, the clanging rhythm of the insert machine, and the dark ink smudges on the pressmen’s shirts. There was a sense of camaraderie among the folks who worked at the paper — the odd hours, the stress of deadlines, and the constant noise. Perhaps these memories are why this story so resonates with me.
At the current home of The Los Angeles Times on Spring Street, faded and half empty, there are few references to the bombing. There is a brief blurb about it in a historical timeline exhibit in the lobby. There is the cornerstone laid in 1934 by Harry Chandler, which contains a copper box with a list of the dead and other mementos. The words “True Industrial Freedom” are etched into the building’s façade, a reference lost to most casual pedestrians.
Across the street is an empty lot where “The Fortress” and its immediate successor had once approximately stood. The day I visit, there is a faint smell of urine and trash, and the detritus of the city clogs the lot’s chain link fence. Weathered signs proclaim that the block will soon be a city park, and flowering bushes have already reclaimed much of the area. Stray sheets of newspapers blow through high, rustling weeds. The ruins of a later government building are visible, and a desk and chair sit on ghostly guard at the top of a set of stairs overgrown with weeds. Rumor has it that the future park’s retaining walls were made with the debris of “The Fortress,” but it is only a rumor. The truth is there’s nothing much left of the disaster that once gripped the nation and dramatically capped off decades of class warfare and labor struggle. There are just scattered pieces of remembrance, here and there.
NOT SO FAR AWAY – Asteroid 2017 BS32 will zoom past Earth TONIGHT in fourth close shave of the year
Scientists spotted space rock from ‘potentially hazardous’ Aten asteroid group on Monday
BY MARGI MURPHY
SCIENTISTS have just spotted an asteroid which will brush past Earth this evening.
Asteroid 2017 BS32 will fly past at around 161,280 km from our planet, according to stargazers.
2017 BS32 is expected to hurtle past at around 8.30pm Thursday.
The space rock – estimated to be around 82ft in size – belongs to the Aten group of asteroids.
Several of the thousands of Atens have been classed as “potentially hazardous” because of their proximity to Earth.
It was only spotted on Monday by astronomers and is the fourth Near-Earth Asteroid to pass this year, according to eagle-eyed asteroid watchers.
THE MIND-BENDING PHYSICS OF A TENNIS BALL’S SPIN
TENNIS HAS BEEN called the game of inches, of kings, of poets, of love, of errors, of endurance, of a lifetime. But those are mostly metaphors. Really, tennis is the game of spin.
Watch Novak Djokovic send arcing yellow streaks from beyond his baseline to the bleeding edge of his opponent’s backcourt. Watch Rafael Nadal’s ground strokes cross a foot or more above the net, then drop like tactical bombs to the competition’s ad corner. Watch Serena’s opponents go crosseyed staring down her barrel-rolling 126 mph first serves. Go to any court in any city and you will find players at every level squatting, twisting, grunting—trying to find that spin.
It’s fairly easy to figure out what spin does: It wins tennis matches. How it works—or rather, how it’s created—on the other hand, is about as complicated a physics question you can set about solving without invoking subatomic particles. The variables include squishy balls, stiff racquets, taut strings, thrusting knees, twisting hips, swinging shoulders, and rotating elbows. But all those mechanics are made possible by a pair of equipment innovations.
Billionaire closer to mining the moon for trillions of dollars in riches
Moon Express, the first private company in history to receive government permission to travel beyond Earth’s orbit, announced Tuesday that it raised another $20 million in private equity financing to fund its maiden lunar mission to take place in late 2017. This brings the total amount of private investment to $45 million from investors that include Peter Thiel‘s Founders Fund, Collaborative Fund and Autodesk.
What may have added impetus to investor interest in Moon Express is President Trump’s picks for the NASA transition team — Charles Miller and Chris Shank — and the leading candidate to become the next NASA administrator, GOP Rep. Jim Bridenstine. All support commercial space ventures and manned exploration — including lunar missions.
If successful, the new MX-1 lunar lander from Moon Express would not only win the $20 million Google Lunar XPRIZE, it would also help jump-start a new era of space exploration. Up until now, only government-funded missions from the United States, China and Russia have landed on the moon.
Dogs ‘prefer reggae and soft rock’ to other music genres, research suggests
Dogs appear to prefer reggae and soft rock over other genres of music, according to researchers.
The Scottish SPCA and the University of Glasgow have published a paper which suggests music affects dogs’ behaviour.
Researchers played a variety of music to dogs at a rehoming centre in Dumbarton and assessed physiological and behavioural changes.
Prof Neil Evans said the most positive behaviour changes were seen when the dogs were played reggae and soft rock.
All though these genres stood out, he said the study suggested each dog had its own music tastes.
Prof Evans said: “Overall, the response to different genres was mixed highlighting the possibility that like humans, our canine friends have their own individual music preferences.”
The dogs were played five different genres of music: soft rock, Motown, pop, reggae and classical.
The study suggested that dogs spent “significantly more time lying and significantly less time standing” when music was played, regardless of genre.
By measuring the dogs’ heart rate, researchers said they showed a decrease in stress levels when played music – particularly when it was soft rock or reggae.
Essence of reality: Hunting the universe’s most basic ingredient
Drill down past molecules, atoms, and fundamental particles and where do you end up? We might finally be about to find out
STRETCH out your hand. Ever wonder what it’s made of? The skin masks flesh, blood and bone sure enough. But those tissues are made of molecules, which are made of atoms. And atoms are made of electrons, protons and neutrons. It’s only when we drill down to fundamental particles and energy that we reach bedrock.
Or do we? The history of physics certainly gives us pause. For more than 300 years we have been asking ourselves about the true nature of reality – what, ultimately, stuff is made of. Time and again, we have found another layer beneath what we thought was the lowest. What’s more, with each new depth we plumb, our old understanding of reality is swept aside.
Now we could be on the cusp of another revolution, thanks to efforts to reconcile our two most successful but incompatible theories of reality. Not particles, energy, space,time or anything else we might think of as fundamental truly is: instead, the essence of reality is a thing whose workings we’re only just beginning to grasp.
Every age has had its own list of reality’s basic elements. For the philosopher Democritus, everything was made of atoms. For Aristotle, it was earth, air, water and fire. In the late 19th century, all the talk was of the luminiferous ether, a medium which was thought to carry light.
For most of the past three centuries, however, Newton guided our thoughts on what all things are made of. He thought that reality had three elementary components: time, a cosmic clock ticking away in the background; particles with mass; and a space in