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Monday, November 30, 2015

Hello Autumn

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Hello Autumn
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New Research: People Who Sleep In Aren't Lazy, They're Smarter

New Research Says
People Who Sleep In Aren't Lazy
They're Smarter And More Creative Than You 

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Let me guess, someone you're close to sleeps in until 11am and stays up until 2am. They probably come off as pretty lazy, but according to science, you couldn't be further from the truth. 

Research published in the Huffington Post says that people who deviate from a normal sleep schedule tend to be more intelligent. 

The finding is supported by a wealth of research that suggests that people who create new evolutionary patterns, like sleep patters, are the most progressive and intelligent.

In a way, it makes sense. Those who are the first to change tend to be the most progressive and intelligent. Researchers analyzed the sleeping patterns of 1,000 students and found that those who stayed up later and went to bed later scored higher on inductive reasoning tests. 
These tests placed the students with above normal average intelligence.

It's true, early birds do tend to be more productive than us sleeping in types, but we late risers are better suited for creative pursuits
Many early risers do things like go to the gym or get to work early, but late night people take advantage of the night more effectively.

 


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Sunday, November 29, 2015

Reasons To Be Proud Of Being A Night Owl

7 Reasons To Be Proud
Of Being 
A Night Owl

By Renee Jacques  - Posted: 10/23/2014

It's been said that early birds get the worm, but night owls also reap a whole lot of benefits just by being who they are. And it's time they got some praise.

Please don't get us wrong: We are definitely sleep advocates. And it is very important for you to make sure that you get the right amount of sleep (seven to nine hours for the average adult) every single day in order to stay healthy. This is not permission to stay up late and skimp on sleep. But if your lifestyle can allow for a later wake time, you might feel inclined to stay up a bit later, too.

While there has been a lot of praise for being a morning person (those health benefits are real and very good), there hasn't been much to tout the perks of being someone who works best at night. Behold -- an ode to those who love to burn the midnight oil.

1. Night owls might have a higher IQ.
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Satoshi Kanazawa, an evolutionary scientist at the London School of Economics and Political Science, found a connection between intelligence and adaptive behaviors that are "evolutionarily novel" -- meaning they deviate from what our ancestors did. He wrote that "routine nocturnal activities were probably rare in the ancestral environment and are thus evolutionarily novel." The study concluded that "More intelligent children are more likely to grow up to be nocturnal adults who go to bed late and wake up late on both weekdays and weekends." 

Yet, while night owls may have a higher IQ, those who wake up in the morning may be in a better position for success. Christoph Randler, a biology professor at the University of Education in Heidelberg, asked 367 students about the time of day they felt most active. Randler found that "a higher percentage of the morning people agreed with statements that indicate proactivity."

2. They also benefit from having "night strength."
Night owls may have a physical advantage over early birds. Researchers at the University of Alberta tested the leg strength of nine morning people and nine night people and found that the early birds' strength remained consistent throughout the day, but night owls' strength peaked to higher levels at night. Olle Lagerquist, the co-author of the study, told CNN that the reason for this may be because at around 9 p.m., evening types "show increased motor cortex and spinal cord excitability."

3. People who work at night appear to be more creative.
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Researchers from the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan found that night people are more likely to develop original and creative solutions to problems than morning people. Marina Giampietro, the lead author of the study, hypothesizes that night owls might be more creative because staying up late "may encourage the development of a non-conventional spirit and of the ability to find alternative and original solutions.”

4. Night owls score higher on general intelligence tests.
Researchers at the University of Madrid released a study last year that looked at the sleeping patterns of around 1,000 teens. The study found that night owls scored higher on inductive reasons tests, which is related to general intelligence, than their morning bird counterparts. But, the same study also found that morning birds get better grades.

5. They're in good company. After all, even the president of the United States is a night owl.
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In 2009, President Obama told Newsweek that he likes to stay up late and says that even when he’s done working, he stays up even later reading.
I'm a night owl. My usual day [is]: I work out in the morning; I get to the office around 9, 8:30 a.m. to 9 a.m.; work till about 6:30 p.m.; have dinner with the family, hang out with the kids and put them to bed about 8:30 p.m. And then I'll probably read briefing papers or do paperwork or write stuff until about 11:30 p.m., and then I usually have about a half hour to read before I go to bed … about midnight, 12:30 a.m. -- sometimes a little later.

6. Night owls can remain mentally alert for more hours after waking up than early birds.
A 2009 study by the University of Liege in Belgium monitored 15 “extreme night owls” and 16 “extreme early birds” and had participants stay on their normal sleeping schedules. Researchers measured their brain activity after participants first woke up, and then once again 10.5 hours later. The study found that participants scored similarly on the first test, but that "10.5 hours after waking up, the early birds had lower activity in brain regions linked to attention and the circadian master clock, compared to night owls."

7. There's a group called "The Night Owl Society" dedicated to creative freelancers who stay up at night.
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Von Glitschka, an illustrative designer, says he created "The Night Owl Society" after working for 12 years as a "creative hired gun" for agencies across the globe and noticing that he, and many other designers like him, work so much better at night. "I enjoy the solace and the uninterrupted aspect of working late at night," Glitschka wrote in an email to The Huffington Post. "I know many other creatives like me, and this was an excuse to share our work online through a Facebook group and recognize each other."
The society's manifesto on Glitschka's website sums up who they are pretty aptly:
Our nocturnal tribe soars at midnight. We are the night owls -– whose pixels, presses, polygons and projects flourish best under obsidian skies.
Fellow night owls can sign up for a membership, and upon being inducted, will receive a "Night Owl Creative Pack" that includes a sketch pad, a set of keyboard characters and a membership certificate among other things. 

They will also get access to "The Night Owl Society" Facebook page.


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Saturday, November 28, 2015

What Happens To Your Body After Thanksgiving Meal

 
After The Thanksgiving Meal
This Is What Happens To Your Body
Posted: 11/27/2013

We've made countless jokes about our "Thanksgiving pants" and planned belt unbuckling as we prepare to indulge in a big meal on Thursday. And, in case you missed it, we've also done our best to calculate the number of calories we might consume if we don't rein it in a little bit. But what actually happens to your system when you overeat during the holidays?

We asked Dr. Jay Kuemmerle, a gastroenterologist and professor of medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University and Dr. Daniel Hurley, an endocrinologist and consultant in the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, Metabolism and Nutrition at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester to walk us through how our bodies really handle the feast before us.
"The main difference that relates to Thanksgiving is the volume and constituents of the meal," says Kuemmerle. "In large part the high fat can lead to feeling very full and slower digestion. This can cause the stomach to expand to a greater degree, which can be uncomfortable."

Uncomfortable how? Well, as the stomach gets more distended from overeating, the growing pressure is relieved by releasing gas -- that means some people will experience acid reflux and the urge to belch. Kuemmerle suggests thinking of the stomach as a balloon: It has some elasticity, but eventually reaches a breaking point and must relieve pressure.

Our bodies have a natural stopping point, but the brain is capable of overriding the stomach's wishes to stop eating. That's particularly true during a holiday meal, where variety and abundance are prized.
"There's some suggestion that a wide variety of food, like at the Thanksgiving meal, tends to increase food intake," says Hurley. This is often referred to as the "smorgasbord effect," according to the Columbia University Press.
 
Thanksgiving differs from other meals mostly in ritual: The holiday prizes tradition over digestive mindfulness, hence the problems with variety and satiety. But in all other ways, the meal looks about the same to your digestive tract. (Which may be a comment on our abundant year-round food supply and not this holiday of abundance).

Below, how digestion works -- on Thanksgiving and on all other days:
It turns out the expression "feast your eyes" is pretty dead on. As soon as you sit down at the table, the sight and smell of the food sends a signal to the brain and then down to the stomach to prime your digestive system for the meal, according to Kuemmerle.

That means, at the very first bite, your stomach is primed and ready to go. "When the first bite of food hits the stomach, it's already revved up: acid and digestive enzymes have been released," says Kuemmerle. "The stomach starts to expand to accomodate the meal."
Your mouth plays a role too. "As food is chewed, digestive juice from the salivary glands starts the digestion," explains Hurley. "The teeth involved in mastication break down the food into protein, carb, fat and then in the stomach, breakdown continues."

As you eat, your stomach stretches and secretes acid and digestive enzymes to help digest the food. Once you get to a point where your stomach feels full, stretch receptors -- a collection of sensory nerves in the stomach -- send messages to the brain to tell it that it's time to stop eating.

Again, this is where your brain can really misguide your body. "When we eat, ghrelin -- the hormone that stimulates back to brain to say I'm full or I'm hungry -- increases and activates the hunger or satiety centers in the hypothalamus of the brain," explains Hurley. "But your central nervous system can override the hypothalamus -- it's the same reason we can stay awake, even if our brain is telling us we're tired."

Once your body determines fullness, the stomach grinds the food down into two to three millimeter pieces -- small enough to fit into the small intestine. As the stomach does this, it begins to contract and reestablish its tone, while pushing the ground up matter and digestive liquid through the pylorus and into the duodenum, which is the upper part of the small intestine.

This process can be slowed, depending on what you ate. "A high fat meal with gravy and butter delays emptying of the stomach because fat is harder to digest," says Kuemmerle. In other words? Your stomach's ability to efficiently process its contents may rely on how much butter your Aunt Mable put in those mashed potatoes. This can delay stomach emptying, which is an important step of digestion because the food's presence in the small intestine signals the release of important enzymes from the pancreas and galbladder. These pancreatic enzymes and bile help to digest carbs and proteins and emulsify fats, breaking the food down into amino acids and simple sugars to be absorbed into the blood stream.

Of note, Hurley explains, our metabolism can actually increase if we eat too much to help with digestion, which requires energy. But don't get too excited, he says, "it's not enough to overcome the calories we don't need -- it's just enough to help us."

The release of sugar in the blood stream triggers insulin, the hormone responsible for regulating blood sugar. Insulin and another hormone glucagon will store some sugar in the liver as glycogen (some fat is also stored in the liver). Every cell of your body requires glucose and muscles also requires a store of glucogen. What the body doesn't use for these functions will be sent to fat tissue to be stored as fat -- either subcutaneous fat or abdominal visceral fat.
As the digested material hits the end of the small intestine, specific vitamins get absorbed, bile gets reabsorbed and hormonal signals are sent to the brain.

Next, the body performs a really fascinating self-cleaning maneuver: As the matter continues into the colon (where water is reabsorbed and some additional nutrients are absorbed, according to Kuemmerle), the interdigestive period begins. All of the "indigestible material" -- the detritus that didn't make it through the first time -- gets pushed through. The pylorus opens widely and the bigger stuff gets swept into the colon. A gallbladder contraction allows the pancreatic duct to get cleaned out. It is, Kuemmerle explains, a form of housekeeping to prep the body for the next meal.

"While the [conscious] brain is involved in chewing and swallowing and 'starting' the machinery," says Kuemmerle. "The vast number of functions occur in the GI tract without us being able to regulate or be aware of it."


And here you thought you were just sitting on the couch.

     


Thanksgiving Airspace - Timelapse

Thanksgiving Airspace
Timelapse
2013



A 20 hour timelapse of US airspace taken from approx 2AM to 10PM EST on November 27th 2013.
 
The song: "Camping" - Detektivbyrån

The Yellow planes represent aircraft with ADS-B (live global tracking)
 
The Orange planes represent aircraft monitored by FAA tracking alone (slower rate of refresh)
 
The Red planes represent aircraft which have changed their Squawk Code (They can represent the loss of communications, a hijacking, or a general emergency)

If you want to see what other days appear like to compare this to a "normal day", I have two other videos made last year using the same website:
3AM-3PM EST December 7th, 2012 - http://youtu.be/kadAZfQsw0A
4AM-4PM EST December 8th, 2012 - http://youtu.be/ljbOmyIHRw4


To make this video I used www.flightradar24.com. I had to make a Macro (I used AutoHotKey) to keep the feed active, and I used Camstudio-Recorder for the screen recording. If you are planning on trying this yourself you will want to set the Macro to refresh the screen at intervals that will never match your Recording, or you will end up with thousands of blank/loading screens.

Also, since this video is taking off so fast (bad pun), I want to list off the things I know are wrong with the video that I only noticed post-edit:
1: at 0:42 there is a typo, it should read EST and not PST
2: there are jumps in the video at 0:40, and 1:53.
These are cut points between the 3 main cuts of the feed that I had to make. 
I believe I can fix this error for future attempts.




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Saturday, November 21, 2015

Artist Riusuke Fukahori 3D Goldfish in Resin

Riusuke Fukahori’s
Lifelike Goldfish
Painted in Acrylic
Between Layers of Resin
Japanese artist Riusuke Fukahori paints three-dimensional goldfish using a complex process of poured resin. The fish are painted meticulously, layer by layer, the sandwiched slices revealing slightly more about each creature, similar to the function of a 3D printer. I really enjoy the rich depth of the pieces and the optical illusion aspect, it's such an odd process that results in something that's both a painting and sculptural. Wonderful.

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Kingyo Sukui (The Ark). Wood, net, aluminum, epoxy resin and acrylic, 2015. 73 x 75 x 38 inches. Courtesy Joshua Liner Gallery

Japanese artist Riusuke Fukahori (previously) returns to Joshua Liner Gallery this week for his second solo show, Goldfish Salvation. Fukahori has become widely known for his depiction of aquatic life painted with acrylic within layers of resin, most frequently the forms of goldfish as they swim through small wooden boxes or inside bamboo hats. He references dozens of live fish kept in aquariums in his studio as he works, with some pieces taking several months to gradually complete, layer by layer.

The exhibition’s title, Goldfish Salvation, is a personal reference to a time of self-doubt in Fukahori’s own artistic career, and an important revelation that led him out of it. Goldfish have since become a symbol of identity that represent both the strength and weakness of himself and rest of humanity. He shares:
In the aquarium, similar to human society, there is a story of birth and death. As long as they live, these goldfish will continue to soil the fish tank, and if not changed, the water will only get tainted leading to death for all the goldfish. This is quite true for the human species as well… The goldfish that I paint are not really goldfish, but representations of people. I feel as though the fish tank is only foretelling what would happen to the earth in the future. We as human beings are the main source polluting our own air we breathe.
You can see all of the pieces here, plus a number of large acrylic paintings by Fukahori at Joshua Liner Gallery in New York through December 19th. (via Hi-Fructose)

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Kingyo Sukui, detail.

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Kingyo Sukui, detail.

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Kingyo Sukui, detail.

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Four Seasons of Rain – Bosan (Autumn). Japanese bamboo hat, epoxy resin and acrylic on iron stand , 2015. 16 x 7.5 inches. Courtesy Joshua Liner Gallery

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Four Seasons of Rain – Setcho (Winter). Japanese bamboo hat, epoxy resin and acrylic on iron stand , 2015. 16 x 7.5 inches. Courtesy Joshua Liner Gallery

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Iwashirogamatsu. Epoxy resin and acrylic, 2015. 5.5 x 3.5 x 1.75 inches. Courtesy Joshua Liner Gallery

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Tsuzuki. Japanese Cypress sake cup, resin, acrylic, 2015. 3.5 x 3.5 x 2.2 inches. Courtesy Joshua Liner Gallery


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Kingyo-sake Kochomatsu. Japanese Cypress sake cup, resin, acrylic, 2015. 3.5 x 3.5 x 2.2 inches. Courtesy Joshua Liner Gallery

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Spring of the Moon. Tub, ladle, epoxy resin and acrylic, 2015. 13.78 x 12.6 x 9.84 in. Courtesy Joshua Liner Gallery

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Spring of the Moon. Tub, ladle, epoxy resin and acrylic, 2015. 13.78 x 12.6 x 9.84 in. Courtesy Joshua Liner Gallery


Artist Riusuke Fukahori
Paints Three Dimensional Goldfish
Embedded in Layers of Resin


 
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