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Astronomers Solve the Mystery of 'Hanny's Voorwerp' 123

KentuckyFC writes "In 2007, a Dutch school teacher named Hanny van Arkel discovered a huge blob of green-glowing gas while combing though images to classify galaxies. Hanny's Voorwerp (meaning Hanny's object in Dutch) is astounding because astronomers have never seen anything like it. Although galactic in scale, it is clearly not a galaxy because it does not contain any stars. That raises an obvious question: what is causing the gas to glow? Now a new survey of the region of sky seems to have solved the problem. The Voorwerp lies close to a spiral galaxy which astronomers now say hides a massive black hole at its center. The infall of matter into the black hole generates a cone of radiation emitted in a specific direction. The great cloud of gas that is Hanny's Voorwerp just happens to be in the firing line, ionizing the gas and causing it to glow green. That lays to rest an earlier theory that the cloud was reflecting an echo of light from a short galactic flare up that occurred 10,000 years ago. It also explains why Voorwerps are so rare: these radiation cones are highly directional so only occasionally do unlucky gas clouds get caught in the crossfire."

Comment Re:I'm sure this looks great on Powerpoint (Score 0) 155

I agree with SuperBanana 100% in his "just because Google is doing it, doesn't make it brilliant", and actually the broad statement that "Google pioneered" is very vexing. The whole thing is sheer ignorance, since battery backup constitutes no more than 1% of the real function of the UPS, while 99% is voltage REGULATION and clean-up. Feeding servers directly from municipal power is disaster.

Comment Re:Change all IT geeks can believe in. (Score 1, Funny) 152

How old are you ? I think you're 18'ish ? Huh ? You seem so far off this planet ! You're like a kid who still believes that the US government is striving to reach the moon to build lovely rose gardens and ball pitches and parks to relieve humanity from a crowded and poluted Earth !!! Umphh Umphh He He He ... If you really pull year head out of wherever it is now (uhm!) and understand some real-life shit - please consider that corporates run the show - the politics show, the industry show, the commerce show, and definetly (as a natural consequence) the PEOPLE show, and not only in the US by the way. It is corporates that were fighting tooth and nail for the 'huge' IT and networking multi-hundred-billion dollar market - which eventually yielded the "distributed processing" concept in the early 90's to overshadow the mainframes, simply because if it were mainframes only, then the larger piece of the pie would have been swallowed by IBM with a proud relentless burp following it. The ass-holes in IBM simply joined the same bandwagon that knocked them down (some say that this is smart !). Now eveything is coming back to a model which is again a-la mainframe (call it Mainframe V2) - CLOUD shit. If you dont believe me ask someone who worked with mainframes : was there an OS used in IBM mainframes called VM (VIRTUAL Machine) and which DYNAMICALLY allocated resources to applications/users ON-DEMAND ? Note the caps are identical to those you hear today. You know that he will answer you that these have been around since the 70-80's !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I will not address the financial game that has been played - DISTRIBUTED processing = DISTRIBUTED profit (versus mainframe = IBM centirc profit). You get DISTRIBUTED everything : maintenance, deployment fees, security, installation, licences, administration, backup/restore ... OHHHHHH - leave me alone .... its such a big story .... (puffing cigarette and went to the window)

Comment Re:Story meaning? (Score 1) 313

In response to your (very naive) *why* is it a questionable research : In statistics, there is a something called the "confidence interval" which relates the "confidence" in an extrapolated average to the size of the sample taken. Mathematically, the greater the sample size, the greater the "confidence". Now for our case, where 1,200 samples were taken and working the arithmetic back : 7M = 16.3% of all the net users, therefore these are approx. 43M people, so the sample size is only a meager 0.002%, which can bring down the confidence level to the floor.

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