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Archive for September, 2005

New Computer

Dell Computer

Today I have a day off. As a computer-junk as I am I have to deal with four computers to install. That is to say, I have to deal with two broken ones; a P III 45o MGH and a P IV, and with to new computers a Vobis AMD AThlon 2600 and a Dell P 3,4 Dual processor. The new Vobis belongs to Esther and the new Dell luckily belongs to me. The mess in the livingroom as shown in the picture gallery below is typical for computer junks. In the old days MS DOS was hot ( Microsoft Direct Operating System), and every one who belongs to the pre-windows period knows the charme of dozens of 1,44 mb diskettes lying around you trying to install some discutable programs. And even worse, perhaps you remeber the 340K flexible floppy’s…?


The livingroom mess at mazaliens home
The livingroom mess at mazaliens home
The livingroom mess at mazaliens home
The livingroom mess at mazaliens home

And while messing around with the computers I stumbled over the little town Limerick in Eire. This is the town where the head office of Dell is situated. Situated at the mouth of the river Shannon, Limerick stands as a dynamic educational, economic, social and recreational base serving the mid western region and the surrounding areas. Limerick’s central location and vast range of travel and accommodation facilities provide an ideal base for both the prospective tourist and eager entrepreneur contributing greatly to the regions economic success. With breath-taking views of the river Shannon and Lough Gur, coupled with Limerick’s many historical landmarks, e.g.. John’s Castle, the Treaty Stone and Glenstal Abbey, Limerick boasts a strong and varied past.

Limerick
 

“What does Limerick have to offer you?”

A question that holds many responses. Firstly, with approximately 49% of the total population ranging between the ages of 0 – 29, Limerick is a young vibrant City with a changing face focusing primarily on education, better road networks and infrastructure, and between social and leisure activities. In addition, Limerick is home to some of Ireland most reputed third level institutions e.g. the University of Limerick and Limerick Institute of Technology. These institutions are committed to turning out thousands of quality graduates each year to meet the growing demand for professionals in the Mid-west region. When it come to sports, Limerick has a wide array of sporting facilities, including a 50mswimming pool, a new racecourse and many fine golf courses.


Limerick Eire
Limerick Eire
Limerick Eire
Limerick Eire

Limerick, in recent years, seen a significant increase in the services available within the region. As the administrative capital of the Midwest, Limerick is well serviced, with many organisations/services having their regional headquarters here. In addition, local services have both increased in size and variety, with many shops now offering late night shopping. When it comes to entertainment and free-time activities, Limerick has a choice of restaurants and cafes offering food and beverages from a variety of cultures. The region also offers an assortment of nightlife from Theatre to Concerts to Bars and Nightclubs. Limerick also plays host to a selection of health clubs and gyms.

Water art

Liquid Sculpture is the process of creating shapes by dropping and splashing water, or other liquids. These sculptures are then photographed, since they last only a few thousandths of a second. Creating and capturing these engaging forms requires careful manipulation of the materials and precise control of the lighting and timing. They mostly use plain, clear water, sometimes with a little soap in it (gallery). They have experimented with food coloring, as well (gallery), and glycerin to increase the viscosity (gallery). Milk is a classic material and still enjoyable (gallery), and oil is very tempting (gallery). Several people ask if these images are Photoshop trickery. No. They might clean up the background, and sharpen the image. Sometimes they increase the saturation of the colors a bit. Otherwise, the colors and shapes are from nature, I just recorded them.


Liquid Sculpture
Liquid Sculpture
Liquid Sculpture
Liquid Sculpture

These sculptures (splashes) come in endless varieties. Their specific natures arise from the timing and position of the drops, exactly when they are photographed, and the qualities of the liquid. The behavior of the liquid is determined by its surface tension, density, and viscosity, as well as other traits they haven’t yet explored. Liquid Sculpture images are mostly (though not necessarily) recognizable as liquid splashes, but they also provide engaging metaphors. The forms are as intriguing to the eye as they are provocative to the mind. As such, Liquid Sculpture finds a place as product or company logos, business card and letterhead images, and wall art for lobbies, waiting rooms, restaurants, and the like. All images are offered for sale, either as prints up to 36×48 inches, or as high-resolution digital images. Also, custom images using specified colors, shapes, and backgrounds can be created on a contract basis.


Liquid Sculpture
Liquid Sculpture
Liquid Sculpture
Liquid Sculpture

World’s largest carpet

Carpet from Iran

TEHRAN – Iran is seeking to revive its carpet industry by weaving the world’s biggest rug, weighing in at 35 tonnes. The mammoth rug from the spiritual homeland of Persian carpets will cover almost 6,000 square metres and will fetch some $8.2 million, its makers told Reuters on Saturday. “We will have two working shifts of 1,000 weavers working for 14 months non-stop to deliver the carpet on time,” said Karam Reza Haseli, a deputy manager at the state-supported Iranian carpet company. Work is due to start in three months. The carpet has been ordered by the Sheikh Zayed mosque that is being built in Abu Dhabi, after Iran scoured its Gulf neighbours for contracts that might help revive business for local wool merchants, dye makers and weavers. Although hand-woven carpets are normally Iran’s top non-oil export, the industry has been hit by cheaper Pakistani, Chinese and Indian copies of traditional Iranian patterns.

Iran is hoping to break its own record for Gargantuan carpets, which it says is currently held by the 4,400 square metre carpet woven for the Sultan Qaboos mosque in Muscat. Haseli said the quality of the workmanship would be maintained by paying some of the master craftsmen up to $7 a shift, far more than the $1 going-rate in areas near the Afghan border. “We intend to monopolise the market with expensive delicate carpets and leave the cheap fake carpets market for others to fight for,” Haseli said.

Book of the week, week 39

Sacred India

Sacred India is a close-focus view of spirituality in India, with a very God-is-in-the-details approach. Lonely Planet tackles a bafflingly large subject with admirable grace in this loosely structured, accessibly sized coffee-table book. A florid painting of Ganesh, a hundred capped heads bowed in prayer, weather-beaten flags whipped in the Himalayan wind: all are diverse glimpses of India’s spiritual cultures. India’s four major religions, Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism and Buddhism are gathered in an impressionistic collage of vibrant photos and text. Christianity, Jainism, Judaism, Zoroastrianism, as well as tribal religions and gurus are also covered in smaller sections. The book’s photos are lavish in colour and pungently evocative–but decidedly not opulent. They excel at the intensely personal (a lotus flower, a turban-swathed camel trader, a Muslim woman reading the Koran), but their zoomed-in style sometimes falls short of capturing the sense of awe and grandeur we like to associate with religion. Sacred India offers brief glimpses of a wide-ranging and multi-coloured land; but unlike the fable of the blind men and the elephant, the picture formed in the mind’s eye from these richly textured details will be greater than the sum of its parts.

Lonely Planet, ISBN 1974059-366-9

The Times :

An exquisite study with stunning photographs and fascinating personal stories.

Publishers Weekly, us :

Sacred India is a feast for the mind
as well as the eyes.

Conde Nast Traveler :

This masterfulevocation of the country’s spiritual heritage, combined with the sensuously photographed images, creaters a kind of literary nirvana that can be surpassed only by a journy to India itself.

To the moon again ?

Today NASA unveiled plans to return humans to the moon by 2018. Astronauts are expected to travel in a new spaceship that combines technologies developed for the space shuttle and Apollo programs.

The Moon

The last lunar landing was during the Apollo 17 mission in 1972. The new plan will cost about 104 billion U.S. dollars over the next 13 years and help President George W. Bush achieve the vision for space exploration that he outlined on January 14, 2004. At that time Bush said he wanted humans back on the moon by 2020. The centerpiece of NASA’s return to the moon is a new spacecraft dubbed the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV). The CEV (see photo) is designed to carry four astronauts to the moon for stays of up to seven days—until a moon base allows for longer expeditions (watch NASA animation depicting a future moon mission). The spacecraft can be piloted remotely. It can also be configured to ferry cargo loads and crews to the International Space Station and may eventually carry up to six astronauts to Mars. NASA did not establish a timetable for missions to Mars in the announcement, which was made today in Washington, D.C.

“Apollo on Steroids”

The CEV will be shaped like the capsules used during NASA’s Apollo program but will be three times as large. “Think of it as Apollo on steroids,” NASA administrator Michael Griffin said at a press briefing as he unveiled plans for the CEV, according to the Associated Press. On its return trip, the CEV will be able to parachute to dry land or water, though land is preferable. With proper heat shield replacements, the craft will be able to be reused up to ten times. The new lunar landing module will be delivered into Earth’s orbit by a separate rocket (see photo). The CEV, after separating from its own rocket, will attach itself to the lunar lander before heading to the moon


To the Moon again ?
To the Moon again ?
To the Moon again ?
To the Moon again ?
To the Moon again ?
To the Moon again ?
To the Moon again ?
To the Moon again ?

Once in the moon’s orbit, the lander would detach and deliver up to four astronauts to the lunar surface (see photo). While Apollo was limited to landings along the moon’s equator, the new ship will be capable of landing anywhere on the moon’s surface. Once a lunar outpost is established, crews could remain on the moon for up to six months, according to NASA. Crews and cargo will be carried into orbit by a space shuttle-derived launch system, consisting of a rocket booster and an upper section powered by a main engine. The main engine should be able to lift approximately 55,000 pounds (25 metric tons). A larger version of the rocket will be constructed to ferry cargo loads of up to 275,000 pounds (125 metric tons). NASA hopes the ship will be ready to ferry crews and supplies to the International Space Station by 2010, replacing the aging space shuttle fleet.

Moon Mission

Unmanned missions to the moon are scheduled to begin between 2008 and 2011. Early missions will scout out landing sites and resources such as oxygen, hydrogen, and metals, which will be required for extended lunar stays. If all goes according to plan, the first human mission to the moon will launch in 2018. NASA outlined its vision for the trip on its Web site. The mission will begin by launching the lunar lander and cargo into Earth orbit, along with a propulsion system needed for the CEV and lander to escape Earth’s gravitational pull. Within 30 days of the cargo launch, the crew will arrive in the CEV. The craft will dock with the lander and propulsion system and head for the moon. After reaching lunar orbit—a three-day trip—the astronauts will board the lander and travel to the lunar surface. After exploring the moon for up to a week, the crew will blast off in a portion of the lander (see photo), rejoin the CEV, and travel back to Earth. Upon entering Earth’s orbit, the service module will be jettisoned and the CEV’s heat shield will be exposed. Once three parachutes deploy (see photo), the heat shield will be dropped and the capsule will set down on dry land, most likely at Edwards Air Force Base in California. NASA added that the new vehicle will be far safer than the space shuttle. The added safety is largely because of an escape pod on the top of the capsule, which can quickly blast the crew away from the CEV should problems occur.

The shuttle program has had two fatal accidents, the most recent on February 1, 2003, when Columbia burned up on reentry to Earth’s atmosphere. The same type of falling debris that doomed Columbia was seen falling from the shuttle Discovery during its July 2005 launch.

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