New images of Sagittarius A*, or Sgr A* (pronounced "Sagittarius A-star"), which is approximately 26,000 light-years from Earth, reveal that the black hole manages to suck up less than 1 percent of the gas within its reach. Instead, most of it is tossed back out into space before it'… Read more
Now this is what it's like when galaxies collide.
Or at the very least, this is what it looks like. The visual effects of the collision -- which generated an immense shock wave that produced a spiral plume of 6 million-degree hot gas -- were captured by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, visible here in purple. The European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope contributed to the image's impressive palate with optical observations revealing the galaxy in blue and white.
Such a shock wave, likened to a sonic boom, won't be felt anywhere near Earth, which is 60 million light-years away from the large spiral galaxy NGC 1232 that was rammed by a smaller, dwarf one. … Read more
This galactic region takes its name from Ferdinand Magellan, a 16th century explorer who reportedly referred to the cloud's placement in the sky to guide his ship on his worldwide journeys.
In this spectacular composite image released today by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center, in Huntsville, Ala., scientists are reporting what they say is the presence of X-rays being emitted from young stars -- or "suns" -- … Read more
Black holes are created when a supernova explosion destroys a massive star. Scientists have discovered dozens of black holes, but all of them are already formed. So, when scientists recently saw different distorted remains of a supernova, they knew it something special.
What the scientists believe they observed was the infant phases of a black hole, or the youngest black hole ever recorded in the Milky Way galaxy.
Although black holes are invisible, they can be found by watching their effect on nearby gas and stars. For stellar-mass black hole IGR J17091, this is exactly what is happening. Its gravity is pulling gas away from a companion star and this gas has formed into a disk around the black hole, which is driving off wind.
However, there's something special about IGR J17091--the wind it's creating is the fastest wind ever discovered blowing off a disk surrounding a stellar-mass black hole.
In most other ways IGR J17091 is pretty much a ho-hum black hole: it's located … Read more
TechCrunch filed a lawsuit Thursday against Fusion Garage, the blog's onetime partner on the CrunchPad tablet device, TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington announced Friday.
Arrington wrote that the suit charges Fusion Garage with "Fraud and Deceit, Misappropriation of Business Ideas, Breach of Fiduciary Duty, Unfair Competition, and Violations of the Lanham Act."
The filing of the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California escalates the war of words between TechCrunch and Fusion Garage, in a falling-out that recently became public. Arrington had earlier indicated that he would move toward litigation.
In the … Read more
I was looking through the Google Maps directory recently and found a variety of maps worth checking out. From up-to-date weather to barbershops, they should all be added to your list of Google Maps modules.
Barbershops: The map's description says "Barbershops are one of the last bastions of manliness today." And that's why the developer created a map providing locations to barbershops all over the U.S. Not every area is covered, but if you live in a major city, you'll find at least one or two barbershops to try out.
Best Nightclubs and Bars: If you want to find the best nighttime hangouts in major cities like New York; Scottsdale, Ariz.; or Las Vegas, the Best Nightclubs and Bars Map is for you. After picking an individual city to get a listing of hot spots, you should find all the places you're looking for. It would be nice if it supported more cities, though.
Chandra X-Ray Observatory: The Chandra X-Ray Observatory map gives you in-depth information about Harvard's Chandra X-Ray lab. It has dozens of markers around the world. Each time you click on a map marker, it explains exactly why the location is important to Chandra's operation. If you're interested in space and you want to learn more, this map is for you.
Current Air Quality: Those who have breathing problems will be happy to know that there is a Current Air Quality map that updates each hour with information gathered from government air quality sites. It only tracks the U.S., the U.K., and China, so if you live anywhere else, this probably won't do you much good. But I find it quite useful for where I live.
Distance Measurement Tool: Ever wanted to know what the distance is between Hoboken, N.J., and Tokyo? With the help of the Distance Measurement Tool, you can do just that. Simply click on one spot on the map, then click on another. The tool will show two markers and the distance.
Flickr Mapplet: It's not perfect, but the Flickr Mapplet is a neat addition to your Google Maps favorites. You can search for any kind of image. Once it finds photos that match your query, they will be indicated on the map with markers based on where the photographer claims the photos were taken. Once you click on the marker, you can view the pictures. Its search could be better, but it's still an interesting way to see photos.
Follow the Rainbow: If you want to go to Ireland, Follow the Rainbow is for you. It provides you with all the top spots for history, food, art, and music. When you click one of the markers (they're all color-coded, thus the "Rainbow" name), it tells you where it's located in the country, what it offers, and how to get there.… Read more