Another Website- Livebinders

LiveBinders is a web tool that I found working on a school project. It is a useful tool that is very simple to use. It is basically a online three ring binder which you use to store websites instead of paper projects. It works well even with my limited internet connection, it presents well, and can be used for various things, not just school or work. Here is an example of one I made f or myself just for fun. If you click most of the links in the display area, you are not navigated away from the binder, the link opens in the display area. It is useful for research projects. You can choose to make a public binder, like the one I made for myself, or you could make a private one, viewable only to you and the people who you give the access code to. The uses of the binders are many, just like with a regular three ringed binders.  A few websites won’t allow the site to be viewed anywhere else but the site itself, so the page is simply a explanation of why the site hasn’t appeared, and a link to where the site is located.  This is a useful tool, and while it is no replacement for a traditional three ring binder, it is a very nice virtual one.

Awesome site- Galaxy zoo

I was browsing hubble’s website, and discovered a link to an awesome website called Galaxy Zoo.

Galaxy Zoo is a Zooverse project. It was discovered that ordinary people were as good as scientists at classifying galaxies.  To save their time, you can be a volunteer and classify galaxies  More people classifying means a more accurate identification. You might even be the first to classify a particular galaxy. I found this to be a useful and fun project, and is pretty cool for a backyard astronomer, for both an individual and a group.

Four leaf clovers

I find four leaf clovers everywhere, not just four leaves, I often find five leaf clovers,  occasionally six leaf clovers, and on two memorable occasions I found a seven leaf clovers. I don’t know why I find them so often.  The best way I have found of preserveing them so that I can stick them in my pocket without falling apart is to stick it between either packing tape or clear scotch tape, although lately I have decided to plant one of the ones I found-

Patrick the Four leaf Clover plant

Patrick the Four leaf Clover plant

It keeps making new four leaf clovers too, once even a five leaf!

Now for some facts about four leaf clovers. The four leaf clover is simply a uncommon genetic mutation of a shamrock. A shamrock is considered to be a young clover, and clovers are in the same family as peas.  The four leaf clover has been successfully cultivated, but clover with more than five leaves are incredibly rare.  One leaf is for faith, two is for hope, three is for love, and the fourth  is for luck, according to western tradition. In Irish tradition, the three leaves of a shamrock represent The Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit. Children in the middle ages believed that if they found a four leaf clover, they could see fairies  The Irish believed that a four leaf clover could protect them from magic, plus it gives good luck to those who keep it in their house. The late French Emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte escaped assassination when he stooping down to pick up a lucky four leaf clover, and it was said that Abraham Lincoln carried a lucky clover every day except the day of his assassination.

I don’t believe most of the myths about four leaf clovers, but I do enjoy finding them, and I always have. Maybe I just notice what other people ignore. or maybe I am just lucky, but for some reason finding them always puts a smile on my face.

The Carina Nebula

This is in my opinion, one of the most beautiful nebulae that I have seen. My favorite part is the pillar and jets, but the whole nebula is beautiful.  On Hubble site you can view it, Here is the link to the image of the nebula and Here is the link to my favorite part of the Carina nebula You can get printouts of both Here. Hubble is a great site, and I highly recommend visiting it at least once.

The Carina nebula is not visible to the northern hemisphere, so I can’t see it from where I am at.  A four inch telescope will show the variable star Eta surrounded by a small blob of red light.  What you are seeing is the nebulous patch that is called the Homunculus. It got it’s name because when it is close up, it looks vaguely like a man. The variable star Eta is located very close to the constellation Carina,  the star itself is orange red. If you are interested in learning more about the Carnea nebula, the image tour on hubble’s website is really fascinating.

Ham Radio

Ham radio is not obsolete  Many people might think it is, but it is not true.  Ham radio operators are not just old people, they could also be children, teens, young adults, and middle aged. The reason I decided to become a ham radio operator was because in the event of a mass emergency where there is too many people trying to get help for cellphones to work, ham radios would be the most reliable way to communicate. There are ham radio organizations that are devoted to providing emergency communications.

Besides the serious aspect of ham radio, there is also a lighter side to it. There are events called contesting, during which you try to attain contact with as many people as you possibly can until the event end. The person who talks to the most people, wins. Depending on the equipment you purchase, and your license, you can talk to people from around the world.  You can make friends,  learn about what life is like over there, and perhaps even set up a time to talk again.

I got involved in ham radio by a program our library was hosting. I took classes every week until I learned everything required to take the exam.  Once I passed, I had to wait a long time until my callsign was posted on the FCC UCL. My callsign was KD0TRH. I had no radio until Christmas, when I got a Beofeng UV-5R Handheld Tranceiver. While it by no means will stretch around the world, it can reach several of the local repeaters in this area. Being  a ham radio operator is worth all the effort it took to gain the license.