Astrophysicist Replaces Supercomputer with a Cluster of Eight PlayStation 3s

Suffering from its exorbitant price point and a dearth of titles, Sony's PlayStation 3 isn't exactly the most popular gaming platform on the block. But while the console flounders in the commercial space, the PS3 may be finding a new calling in the realm of science and research.

Right now, a cluster of eight interlinked PS3s is busy solving a celestial mystery involving gravitational waves and what happens when a super-massive black hole, about a million times the mass of our own sun, swallows up a star.

via Astrophysicist Replaces Supercomputer with a Cluster of Eight PlayStation 3s.

Map of where toursists flock

Bluemoon Interactive, a small codeshop, maps touristiness, based on uploads to Panoramio, a site where people share photos of their favorite places. Yellow indicates high touristiness, red is medium touristiness, and blue is low touristiness.

Europe is much brighter than the rest of the world. The coasts of the US has got some brightness, along with Japan and some of the coasts of South America.

The question is are we really seeing levels of tourism, or are we looking at who uses Panoramio? I'm inclined to say the latter, simply because all of Europe is so crazy bright.

via Map of where toursists flock.

Aquatic Dead Zones : Image of the Day

The size and number of marine dead zones—areas where the deep water is so low in dissolved oxygen that sea creatures can’t survive—have grown explosively in the past half-century. Red circles on this map show the location and size of many of our planet’s dead zones. Black dots show where dead zones have been observed, but their size is unknown.

via Aquatic Dead Zones : Image of the Day.

The Next Empire – Magazine – The Atlantic

All across Africa, new tracks are being laid, highways built,ports deepened, commercial contracts signed—all on an unprecedented scale, and led by China, whose appetite for commodities seems insatiable. Do China’s grand designs promise the transformation,at last, of a star-crossed continent? Or merely its exploitation? The author travels deep into the heart of Africa, searching for answers.

via The Next Empire – Magazine – The Atlantic.