Tag Archives: news

Looking for Science News

One of the things I need to do for the new science channel is to keep reading science news. I would like to do a weekly video on science news featuring a few stories from various fields of science. They will be brief, meant as more of a summary of the science news. I will do additional videos about news stories that’ll take a closer look at the news and may or may not be included in the weekly news video.

One of the first stories I will talk about is TRAPPIST-1, which I’ve already talked about on this blog. But where will I find the news? Of course, I’ll keep watching for stories on science news websites, as well as some of the major news websites. There are a lot of science “news” websites out there that I won’t touch, though (Natural News, for example). I want to use legitimate resources that cite the original sources. NASA, for example, is a good source I will use often. I’ll also use Planetary Society, Discovery, LiveScience, Space, Nature, and so on.

I’d like to know what your favourite science news websites are. Let me know in the comments section below.

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What’s Going on with YouTube Demonetization?

You may not have heard about what’s going on with YouTube recently. Many prominent YouTubers have been complaining over the past couple days about receiving notifications from YouTube about videos being demonetized.

The reasons, according to YouTube, are because advertisers don’t want certain types of videos to feature their ads. So, if you use titles, tags, or descriptions that use certain keywords that are basically blacklisted, then your video will lose its monetized status. This can include topics like suicide, rape, murder, death, drugs, war, and so on. Even legitimate news videos that talk about the war with ISIS are being demonetized.

But guess what? This has been going on for quite some time. It’s only that YouTube has made their notification system better, so now people actually know about their videos being demonetized, and they’re able to request that YouTube review the video and restore the monetized status. But what has people really upset is that many videos have been demonetized for months without notification, and that translates as lost revenue for the creators.

Again, this is not something new. This has been going on for a long time from what I’ve heard. It’s just that creators now know about it. The appeal process takes a couple days, but a lot of YouTubers have been getting their videos monetized again.

People are claiming censorship. No, it isn’t. The videos are still there. It’s just that advertisers don’t want certain kinds of videos to have their ads. YouTube just did this in a very poor way, and only recently started letting people know that it has been happening for a long time. Nothing has changed other than the notification system actually working and the ability to appeal being put in place.

This doesn’t affect me, and shouldn’t affect me. I don’t talk about anything controversial and I don’t put any kind of titles, descriptions, or tags that are offensive. However, with some book titles, I may have to watch how they’re handled in the future. None of my videos have been demonetized. The only ones I didn’t monetize are those that have public performances, music, and sumo, but that’s for copyright reasons.

I’m not panicking. I’m not getting upset. I can understand why this has happened, though I don’t know why YouTube hadn’t been more forthcoming with what they were doing with the videos in the past. Now that they are notifying content creators, appeals can be done in a timely manner.

What do you think about this? Let me know in the comments below.

Proxima Centauri b – Our Newest Neighbour

This is the biggest exoplanet news ever. 4.25 light years away, a tiny red dwarf star has revealed something extremely important: a potentially Earth-like planet. The ESO announced today that they have discovered a planet orbiting the nearest star to our solar system, Proxima Centauri.

Artist's impression of Proxima Centauri b. Credit: ESO/M. Kornmesser. Source.
Artist’s impression of Proxima Centauri b. Credit: ESO/M. Kornmesser. Source.

So, how big is this planet? At least 1.3 times the size of Earth, or possibly up to 3 Earths. This would mean it’s either an Earth-like planet or a Super Earth. It is most likely to be terrestrial and due to its proximity to its star, it’s tidally locked. One side always faces its star. However, it’s in that very special place in a star’s orbit where liquid water can exist. That’s the good thing. The bad thing is that ultraviolet and X-rays from Proxima Centauri could make the surface of the planet potentially uninhabitable. With that being said, life could thrive below the surface.

What would it be like on the planet, though? The side facing the star would be hot and blasted by radiation. The side facing away from the star would probably be extremely cold, possibly covered in ice. The area that’s perpetually at sunset would be the most habitable and comfortable. If there’s a significant atmosphere, then temperatures could be stabilised all around the planet, and likely to be a constant wind flowing from the day side to the night side.

Breakthrough Starshot, a project started by billionaire Yuri Milner, physicist Stephen Hawking, and others, now has a destination. This project, designed to send tiny probes at 20% the speed of light into interstellar space, could reach Proxima Centauri b in only 20 years, then another 4.25 years to transmit data back to the Earth. The probes would take pictures and send them back. However, the estimated launch date is 2060, so many of us today would unlikely get to see this. Well, I plan to be around in 2084. I’ll only be 107 years old. I want to see this planet!

This has a lot of people excited, including me. I really want to know more about this planet. I wish we could go now. To see the surface of a world orbiting another star would be the dream of any astronomer or astronomy enthusiast. This is big!

Penny Oleksiak Wins Gold!

Watching the Olympics? Well, Canada’s Penny Oleksiak won a gold medal in the women’s 100 metre freestyle. She tied American swimmer Simone Manuel for gold and they share a new Olympic record. I searched on YouTube to see if they had the race anywhere, but it’s not up. Copyright reasons? No idea. But I’m sure a replay will be available eventually. In the meantime, here is CBC’s news report on it.

With this medal, Penny Oleksiak breaks a record for having the largest number of swimming medals by a Canadian in one Olympics. She has a gold, silver, and two bronze. And she’s not done! She could still get a fifth medal. But since she’s only 16 years old, she’ll likely dominate the sport for the next couple Olympics.

Oh, and I think she’ll be the flag bearer for Canada in the closing ceremonies.

What’s impressed you so far in the Olympics?

Severe Thunderstorm Here Right Now! (Edmonton)

At this very moment, the second severe thunderstorm in the last couple hours is coming through. Strong wind, heavy rain, and very loud thunder accompanying the lightning which has been striking very near here. I recorded some of the first storm on video and posted it on YouTube. Have a look.

While that storm is done, the second one is going through now. The wind was so strong that it made me wonder if there was a tornado. I found out that the tornado that passed through Edmonton in 1987 actually went through the neighbourhood I live in, only about two or three hundred metres from here!

The weather today is crazy. But I love storms. Do you?

Wonder Woman, Justice League, and Star Trek Discovery

San Diego Comic-Con has been giving some very interesting information in video form. I mean the DC Comics movies coming up.

First is the Wonder Woman movie, which has a very interesting looking trailer. Watch it below.

I’m really looking forward to this. Looks great! The other one is the Justice League movie. What they had available isn’t a trailer, but a collection of footage that they have available. And this is it:

But no Superman! (Please, no spoilers in the comments). However, it seems to be a bit more lighthearted than many of the more recent DC movies. I’m looking forward to see it, but I still need to see Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

And finally, some Star Trek news! The new TV series will be called Star Trek Discovery, and they have some test footage of the new starship. You can see it here. It looks like it’s post Star Trek VI, but before Star Trek: The Next Generation. The U.S.S. Discovery features an older style saucer section with a Klingon-inspired stardrive section. Looks interesting. I’m intrigued. It sounds like it takes place during the time of peace between the Federation and the Klingons, and there’s some exchange in technology. I’ve heard some people speculating that it may have a cloaking device, so it takes place before the banning of cloaking technology by the Federation.

Let me know what looks interesting to you in the comments below!

The Obligatory Brexit Post

I don’t think I can let this weekend pass without mentioning the UK’s vote to leave the European Union. I know a lot of my readers are from the UK, so you may find this interesting, or you might not. I’ll be brief, anyway.

From what I’ve gathered about what I’ve heard in media, there are some people who voted Leave, but then regretted that decision because they thought their votes wouldn’t matter. They voted Leave for the hell of it. And now three million people have petitioned to have a do-over.

Scotland, which voted to Stay, now wants to leave the UK. The Scottish are furious. Same with Northern Ireland, though I hear it’s a more complicated situation.

And now prices are going up, since the British pound had an incredibly large drop. Things are going to be expensive for people in the UK for a while.

And then there are the lawmakers who campaigned for the UK’s exit from the EU. They have no plan. They have no idea what they’re going to do. Smart. Really smart.

Over here in Canada, we’re watching both the US with the supreme idiot Trump and the UK. Two of our biggest allies and friends are going insane. At least that’s what many people are thinking.

So, British readers, what the hell is going on over there? Let me know in the comments so I can understand the view from someone who’s living through this.