How To Listen To The Perseids
Reports of hearing meteors as they passed overheard were largely dismissed until about 20 years ago, when a scientist proved that very low-frequency radio waves could be picked up by certain objects, such as wire-rimmed glasses.
What's the Latest Development?
If you're in the Northern Hemisphere, and you happen to be viewing the Perseid meteor shower as it hits peak activity later this week and early next week, you might want to put on some wire-rimmed glasses...not to see better, but to hear better. Such glasses are among several objects -- including aluminum foil, dry leaves, and even frizzy hair -- that can receive, or transduce, the very low-frequency (VLF) radio waves produced by meteors as they pass overhead. The phenomenon, known as electrophonics, often results in observers hearing buzzing, hissing, or sizzling.
What's the Big Idea?
For centuries, people have reported hearing meteors as they moved through the sky, and up until 20 years ago, they were dismissed as fantasies. However, in 1992 physicist Colin Keay studied some of these reports and discovered that being near a transducer can allow sounds to reach human ears. And the effect wasn't limited to visible meteors: Many more that were invisible to the naked eye have been detected by their VLF signatures alone. NASA space physicist Dennis Gallagher says that Keay's research "[legitimized] the experiences of all those generations of people."
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Many believe that the internet has made it easier for us to participate in political activism. But is that really true?
- Protesting in person is costly in terms of money and resources; some people have children to take care of, jobs that can't be away from, or may not have time to attend a planning event.
- The internet was supposed to be a way to sidestep this barrier to political activism. But this doesn't consider the other barriers preventing poor and working-class folks from participating in digital activism.
- In particular, these people lack ASETs: access to computers, the skills to use them, the empowerment necessary to feel that using Twitter or other social media is for them, and the time to make use of digital platforms in an effective way.
Some games are just for fun, others are for thought provoking statements on life, the universe, and everything.
- Video games are often dismissed as fun distractions, but some of them dive into deep issues.
- Through their interactive play elements, these games approach big issues intelligently and leave you both entertained and enlightened.
- These five games are certainly not the only games that cover these topics or do so well, but are a great starting point for somebody who wants to play something thought provoking.
The bid to buy Greenland is unlikely to become seriously considered.
- Greenland and Danish officials alike think the idea is ridiculous.
- The island is an autonomous state, and it's unlikely the Danish would sell it because of yearly subsidies costs.
- After hearing the Danish Prime Minister call the idea absurd, Trump cancelled their forthcoming meeting.