These kinetics spectra always make me think of the trails left behind by movie fighter dogfights or the trackmarks from ground vehicle chases. Signals coming and going, and moving back and forth across each other

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Following a living polymerisation by NMR. I've done plenty of these before, but there's still something slightly magical about watching the signal for the monomer shrink in real time as the polymer grows (time increases from bottom to top)


been doing some thinking about daemons in the his dark materials books, informed by real-life internet knowledge

…there are definitely people with sexy plane daemons that they fuck, aren't there?

Breakfast: salami and cheese croissants, and a mug of beautiful Yorkshire gold

Anyway, there was lots of stuff like that. I get that it's a replica, but I just don't see why you'd go to the effort of building a big fake boat (pictured) without making at least a plausible effort on the rigging.

(to those who followed me for chemistry or whatever: it'll come back, but please try to empathise with my boat disappointment)

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Take a look at this pic from the quarterdeck of the replica of the Amsterdam.

•The foremast only has one yard. What's the point of the rest of it? Surely there s a should be more?
•There were no pinrails on the sides of the ship, and an impracticably small number on the masts. Is that wrong, or is that how this ships actually worked? Maybe that's why the foremast was basically empty?
•The shrouds have ratlines up to the tops, but none on the crosstrees which you can juuust see in this pic. Wtf?

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My last evening in the Netherlands for a while, featuring ship decorations carved by men who had never seen breasts

SAR imagery does not have amazing spatial resolution, but is often good enough to do things like identify shipping. Water is a uniquely flat surface, so metal objects floating on water give a good return against a low background signal*. Some computationally demanding image processing later, and you can pick out ship locations. I've got a vague idea that it could be interesting to find ships in the territorial waters of North Korea, correlate against AIS tracks, and try to find some sanction-busting shipping running dark without AIS.

*This makes me wonder: the USSR really struggled with power requirements for the radar on its RORSAT ocean-monitoring satellites, to the point that it ended up having to power them using the only nuclear reactors to be launched into space. Why is SAR so much more efficient?

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I've got a hobby-interest in remote sensing (satellite imagery). Over the past couple of days, I've been playing around with data from the ESA's Sentinel-1 mission. The ESA (being cool and European Union-y) makes most of the data from Sentinel series of satellites freely accessible to the public, and provides some decent software for processing and analysing the data.

Sentinel-1 is a synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite. I don't fully understand the physics behind SAR, but it's basically an active radar measurement of the ground track the satellite passes over. Different surfaces give different sorts of radar returns (measured as a change in polarisation), and so SAR can be used to classify different terrains (crops, forests, grasslands, rock, etc), like in the false-colour image of Flevoland I've attached. Resolution is moderate: for Sentinel-1, each pixel ends up being about 4x4 m on the ground.

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