Combine two of the most common materials found on the surface of our planet - dirt and water - and you get mud, which, in turn, can be played in, struggled through, rubbed on for medicinal value, or just worn for fun. Collected over the past few months from festivals sporting events and more, you'll find here photographs of people around the world playing with, wallowing in, wearing and just dealing with mud - one of the filthiest entries on the Big Picture to date.
The Odyssey is one of the two major ancient Greek epic poems (the other being the Iliad), attributed to the poet Homer. The poem is commonly dated to between 800 and 600 BC. The poem is, in part, a sequel to the Iliad, and concerns the events that befall the Greek hero Odysseus in his long journey back to his native land Ithaca after the fall of Troy.It takes Odysseus ten years to return to his native land of Ithaca after ten years of war; during his 20-year absence, his son Telemachus and his wife Penelope must deal with a group of unruly suitors who have moved into Odysseus' home to compete for Penelope's hand in marriage, since most have assumed that Odysseus has died.The poem is a fundamental text in the Western canon and continues to be read in both Homeric Greek and translations around the world.
40 years ago, three human beings - with the help of many thousands of others - left our planet on a successful journey to our Moon, setting foot on another world for the first time. Tomorrow marks the 40th anniversary of the July 16, 1969 launch of Apollo 11, with astronauts Neil A. Armstrong, Michael Collins and Edwin E. "Buzz" Aldrin Jr. aboard. The entire trip lasted only 8 days, the time spent on the surface was less than one day, the entire time spent walking on the moon, a mere 2 1/2 hours - but they were surely historic hours. Scientific experiments were deployed (at least one still in use today), samples were collected, and photographs were taken to document the entire journey. Collected here are 40 images from that journey four decades ago, when, in the words of astronaut Buzz Aldrin: "In this one moment, the world came together in peace for all mankind".
Since 1895, the Venice Biennale, a contemporary art exhibition, has been held in Venice, Italy every two years (with a few breaks). This year Venice is hosting the 53rd Biennale, which includes an international art exhibition, an architecture exhibition and festivals of contemporary music, dance, and theater - as well as the Venice Film Festival. The 53rd International Art Exhibition titled "Making Worlds", opened to the public on June 7, and will remain open until November 22, 2009. Collected here are a few images from the recent vernissage (opening) of the art exhibition and of Venice itself.
Snider's dream is of a field he calls "cortical computing" that harnesses the possibilities of memristors to mimic how the brain's neurons interact. It's an entirely new idea. "People confuse these kinds of networks with neural networks," says Williams. But neural networks - the previous best hope for creating an artificial brain - are software working on standard computing hardware. "What we're aiming for is actually a change in architecture," he says.
Creeping closer inch by inch - 900ft above the mighty Colorado River - the two sides of a PS160million bridge at the Hoover Dam in America slowly take shape.The bridge will carry a new section of US Route 93 past the bottleneck of the old road which can be seen twisting and winding around and across the dam itself.When complete, it will provide a new link between the states of Nevada and Arizona. In an incredible feat of engineering, the road will be supported on the two massive concrete arches which jut out of the rock face.The arches are made up of 53 individual sections - each 24ft long - which have been cast on-site and are being lifted into place using an improvised high-wire crane strung between temporary steel pylons.
The Pirate Bay has agreed to be sold for $7.7 million, a deal with a Swedish software maker that would ultimately turn the world's most notorious BitTorrent tracker into a legitimate player.The deal by Global Gaming Factory X AB, anticipated to close in August, comes nearly three months after the four co-founders of The Pirate Bay were found guilty of facilitating copyright infringement, and face a year each in prison pending appeals in addition to a $3.6 million fine.While the site is to discontinue pointing the way to free movies, music, games and software, Global Gaming Factory thinks it can turn The Pirate Bay into a money-making venture."We would like to introduce models which entail that content providers and copyright owners get paid for content that is downloaded via the site," Hans Pandeya, Global Gaming's chief executive, said in a statement.
Over the weekend, appoximately 190,000 people made their way to Worthy Farm in western England to attend the 2009 Glastonbury Festival. Attendees came to see performances at what is billed as "Europe's largest open-air music festival" on many stages over four days - headliners included Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, and a reunited Blur. Rainy weather did little to dampen the mood, as attendees enjoyed themselves in tent cities, concert performances, dance tents, and the surrounding countryside of Somerset, England. Collected here are a handful of images from this year's festival.
Physicist Leonardo DiCarlo of Yale University, New Haven, and his colleagues have made the first solid-state quantum processor, using similar techniques to the silicon chip industry. The processor has used programs called quantum algorithms to solve two different problems. The work is published in Nature1.
Earlier this week, NASA released an amazing photograph of an eruption of Sarychev Peak Volcano, taken by astronauts aboard the orbiting International Space Station (ISS). Seeing that great photo prompted me to dig into the archives and see what other imagery I could find from recent NASA archives. Collected here are a handful of photographs of Sarychev Peak Volcano, and more, taken by astronauts aboard the ISS over the past few months.