Wednesday Reads: Arms a plenty…

Michelle’s Coffee Drinking Octopus…click link to check it out.

Morning everyone…

It was a hellish day yesterday, thank you Dak for covering for me last night. I have a few links for you about arms, both animal and astrological.

Let us start this morning’s reads with very big cephalopods…or as Mark Twain would say…damn big cephalopods.

First Images of Giant Squid Filmed in Deep Ocean

A Japanese-led team of scientists has captured on film the world’s first live images of a giant squid, journeying to the depths of the ocean in search of the mysterious creature thought to have inspired the myth of the `”kraken”, a tentacled monster.

This 10 foot (3 meters) creature is a little one compared with other giant squids that have washed ashore dead or caught …but this one is live and on video.

Though the beast was small by giant squid standards – the largest ever caught stretched 18 meters long, tentacles and all – filming it secretly in its natural habitat was a key step towards understanding the animal, researchers said.

“Many people have tried to capture an image of a giant squid alive in its natural habitat, whether researchers or film crews. But they all failed,” said Tsunemi Kubodera, a zoologist at Japan’s National Museum of Nature and Science, who led the team.

Kubodera had some nice quotes about seeing this squid in action…

“If you try and approach making a load of noise, using a bright white light, then the squid won’t come anywhere near you. That was our basic thinking,” Kubodera said.

“So we sat there in the pitch black, using a near-infrared light invisible even to the human eye, waiting for the giant squid to approach,” he said.


“I’ve seen a lot of giant squid specimens in my time, but mainly those hauled out of the ocean. This was the first time for me to see with my own eyes a giant squid swimming,” he said.  “It was stunning, I couldn’t have dreamt that it would be so beautiful. It was such a wonderful creature.”


“A giant squid essentially lives a solitary existence, swimming about all alone in the deep sea. It doesn’t live in a group,” he said. “So when I saw it, well, it looked to me like it was rather lonely.”

That last quote seemed a bit haunting to me…a lonely squid, surrounded by darkness.

Video clips are below, I’ve got two for you because they show different images of the squid…they are quick so you can watch them in a couple of minutes.

These next articles are out of sight amazing. They deal with our Milky Way Galaxy, and unlike that squid swimming alone in darkness…our planet is just one of billions and billions in this galaxy.

First, the “bones” in the arms.

Skeletal ‘Nessie’ Discovered in Our Galaxy


Just as there are bones in your arms, there are bones in our galaxy’s arms as well — and researchers using NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope have shared the x-rays to prove it.

Alright, they’re not actually x-rays but rather images made from observations in infrared light, which Spitzer is specifically designed to detect. (One does need to clarify such things in astronomy.) Orbiting Earth over 172 million kilometers away, Spitzer can see infrared radiation that isn’t visible from the ground, radiation that’s emitted from anything in the Universe warmer than zero Kelvin.

The image above, looking into the plane of the galaxy, shows a long thin strand of dark, cold material stretching between two brighter regions in the lower half — this is a segment of what’s being called a “bone” of the Milky Way, a part of the vast skeletal structure that forms its framework.

It’s the first image of such a structure within our own galaxy.

The “bone” nicknamed “Nessie” and is a long thin piece of our galaxy’s skeleton.

New ‘Bone’ in Milky Way Skeleton Discovered

Astronomers have spotted a new component of the Milky Way galaxy’s skeleton — a “bone” of dust and gas that contains about as much material as 100,000 suns.

The newfound Milky Way bone is more than 300 light-years long but just 1 or 2 light-years wide, giving it the appearance of a slender cosmic snake, researchers said.

“This is the first time we’ve seen such a delicate piece of the galactic skeleton,” study lead author Alyssa Goodman, of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, said in a statement. “This bone is much more like a fibula — the long skinny bone in your leg — than it is like the tibia, or big thick leg bone.”

Now for the part that will make you say, wow…

Estimate suggests that our galaxy contains 17 billion sizzling-hot Earths

A simulation based on data from NASA’s planet-hunting Kepler mission has determined that about one out of every six stars has an Earth-sized planet, which would translate to at least 17 billion such worlds in our Milky Way galaxy. And that’s not even counting the alien Earths we’d want to live on.

These 17 billion planets would be circling their parent stars more closely than Mercury orbits our own sun — which means that, in many cases, the planets would be too hot for liquid water to exist. A few such worlds already have been found, including a “lava planet” known as Alpha Centauri Bb that’s just 4.3 light-years away from us.

This estimate of 17 billion hot Earth-like planets stems from another report that was released on Monday…

461 more Kepler exoplanets found, analysis expects 17 billion Earth-sized planets

Kepler mission scientists announced Monday that a new batch of analysis yielded 461 more exoplanet candidates – and that is from within a relatively small cross-section of our galaxy, bringing the total number of potential planets awaiting confirmation to 2,740. Of the several dozen Earth-sized planets, the smallest of 5 categories, 4 were found to be located within their stars’ habitable zone, which is defined as an orbit where surface water can exist as a liquid.

Candidates require additional follow-up observations and analyses to be confirmed as planets. At the beginning of 2012, 33 candidates in the Kepler data had been confirmed as planets. Today, there are 105.

Take a look at this graph from NASA:

kepler exoplanets

(Photo : NASA)
Since the last Kepler catalog was released in February 2012, the number of candidates discovered in the Kepler data has increased by 20 percent and now totals 2,740 potential planets orbiting 2,036 stars. Based on observations conducted May 2009 to March 2011, the most dramatic increases are seen in the number of Earth-size and super Earth-size candidates discovered, which grew by 43 and 21 percent respectively.
Makes me feel so small and insignificant. What about you? Sometimes I think we all are like that oblivious silvery squid, unaware of what may be watching us in the blackness of space.
I know it is a short set of links for you this morning, I will try to post more newsy type articles in the comments below. Enjoy your day…and please share things you find interesting as you surf your way through the web today.

29 Comments on “Wednesday Reads: Arms a plenty…”

  1. Eric Pleim says:

    Nice squid pics, but I couldn’t get a video going…

    • The work for me, you may need to adjust your browser…try it again…

    • NW Luna says:

      I had to click and reload a couple times, then got it. But I often have to do that with my intermittently slooooow connection.

      I wanted more video footage of the squid and less of the talking heads! Special on Jan 27th sound be very cool to watch.

      • Yeah, me too Luna, that was why I put both links up, since they didn’t have much of a clip of the actual squid. I bet the discovery channel is saving the good stuff for the special.

  2. Again, sorry if these are repeats, I have not even had a chance to read yesterday’s three posts.

    • bostonboomer says:

      For those who never experienced Alex Jones before, he didn’t “flip out” on CNN. That is exactly the way he always acts. He is always screaming and interrupting and saying crazy things. That’s who he is. I can’t believe Morgan put him on the air.

      • And then, Morgan followed up with Dershowitz….who has gone off his head as well.

      • dakinikat says:

        That situation is a perfect metaphor for why CNN is irrelevant these days … they pay Morgan big bucks to be the worst interviewer in the businesses. He can’t get a job in the UK because he has the ethics of a banana slug and they can’t stand his over the top self-gratification on air. It’s like CNN wants to lose money and audience.

  3. bostonboomer says:

    I love the coffee-drinking squid!!

  4. Ain’t this the truth:

    • ecocatwoman says:

      Just how much would those stockholders have received if the Feds had simply looked the other way & let AIG crash & burn? I’m also willing to bet that the CEO & other top execs took “their” share off the top before redistributing the wealth among the stockholders. Maybe they should be suing the AIG top honchos instead?

    • Fannie says:

      Over 50% profit last year……………wth?

    • NW Luna says:

      (all together now, with pitchforks out:) “Where TF is OUR taxpayer share?”

  5. The Roundup for January 8, 2013 | FDL News Desk

    As Senator from NE, Chuck Hagel opposed abortion in cases of rape and incest “because those cases are ‘rare’” and opposed allowing servicewomen “to pay for abortion services at military hospitals out of their own pockets.” He’s also opposed gay rights.

    and the GOP has issues with him?

  6. ecocatwoman says:

    It’s been 2 years since the mass shooting in Tucson. They had a gun buy back yesterday & want to destroy the guns turned in. Shockingly (NOT), the NRA is opposing this action. They want a list of all the guns relinquished. WTF – they cry foul about any sort of gov’t database of weapons sold but they (the NRA) have The Right to force the gov’t to supply Them with a list of guns turned in by private citizens. Am I the only one who thinks this is f’d up? Tail wagging dog??

  7. ecocatwoman says:

    OMG – Schlafly, the epitome of Crazy, was just on The Diane Rehm Show addressing VAWA. Truly this woman belongs in an asylum The true violence (compared to the beating, gang raping & ultimate death of the young woman in India) is the sex selection abortions conducted in India according to this whack job. Women in American, according to Phyllis, aren’t treated like the young woman in India was. She also thinks that mandatory jailing and restraining orders are bad & that the focus should be on keeping the marriage together. Women’s shelters’ purpose is to eliminate the man from the picture and keep women from staying in their marriage. I wouldn’t want to be her daughter or daughter in law.

    • dakinikat says:

      She has made a living selling out women all the while doing just the opposite for her own life. The one thing that I really liked about Ronald Reagan is that he NEVER brought her evil ass into his administration. She spent so much time trying to get in there and even he had the decency to realize she’d sell out any one for her own evil purposes. She was just terribly disappointed when she didn’t get an appointment. But, then, she kept saying women belonged in their houses and he kept her bony ass there. She’s Cruelle De Ville personified.

      • ecocatwoman says:

        Apparently they couldn’t get anyone else to come on the show to speak against VAWA. I know she’s the worst of the worst, but her performance today was the most misguided, horribly stupid I’ve ever heard. Good comparison, Phyllis probably would have no problem skinning puppies to make herself a coat.

  8. RalphB says:

    Noam Scheiber has a good piece on the fiscal curb negotiations.

    TNR: Obama’s Big Mistake in “Fiscal Cliff” Negotiations: Not Keeping Biden Away

    • ecocatwoman says:

      You know what that description of the machinations on the FC reminded me of? A couple with a manipulative kid. The kid asks mom for a ridiculous something or other & her answer is NO. So he goes to dad, says mom says it’s okay if it’s okay with you. So, dad says sure. When will Obama, Biden & the press realize that the Republicans are spoiled brats who constantly threaten to have a temper tantrum? Let ’em scream & yell, they will only embarrass themselves. I know this & I’m not even a parent – but then, maybe that makes it easier to contemplate.

  9. NW Luna says:

    JJ, I absolutely lurve your posts. Interesting and fascinating visuals about the other beings living on/in our world — then all the way out into the astronomical reaches of our incredible and surprising universe.

    Thank you for once again enlarging my day!