Forget Atlantis, here’s a real lost city

Everyone loves a good legendary lost city. Oodles of movies, stories, attractions and even hotels are named after the famed lost city of Atlantis. I have a personal bond with the Disney movie dedicated to Atlantis and this weird Mole character. Since my name is Mollie some people shorten it to Mol, which is correctly pronounced like mall but of course all my really nice friends pronounce it as MOLE. Real attractive, no? No.

Mole from Disney’s Atlantis in all his shining glory. Looks just like me, right?

That short personal connection aside.. imagine my excitement when I first heard about a REAL lost city that was found using remote sensing and space imaging. The city of Ubar is believed to be located deep under the sands of the Sahara desert. I first heard about it at a lecture by my astronomy professor and former astronaut, Linda Godwin, last spring. I was intrigued and awestruck. They found this city using images taken from space and “thermatic mappers” which gather information in different light spectrums, thus providing us with imaging and views that we could not normally see with our own limited eyesight.

PBS has this great interactive site with a pictures, articles and interviews explaining the whole process for people to easier understand.

These archaeologists are out there doing works of fiction. They are doing what all these fables and movies said they would. Unfortunately, I’m pretty sure that none of the archaeologists and scientists working on the Ubar site actually look or act like like Mole from the movie, much to my disappointment.

When asked what their favorite Disney movie is most girls might respond with a tale of love and royalty such as Cinderella or Tangled, but my favorite was always Atlantis. And now it’s as if Atlantis is REAL. I love it when things that sound like myths actually turn out to be plausible and all of this is happening because of what science has to offer. All it takes is a little¬†curiosity and the right tools (brought to you courtesy of NASA).

Atlantis isn’t the only Disney movie to become a reality either, a group of scientists also made a house fly, just like in the movie UP.

The scientific world sure is a wonder. What movie do you want to see be made into a reality next?

I wonder if my room is a black hole


With all the new technology out there now, nothing is simple. Most cameras don’t use AA batteries anymore. Some of them have these fabulous rechargeable batteries that save you money! Sounds awesome right? Not in my opinion. If you’re anything like me, you lose everything, and so having to keep track of this one charger is impossible. Last night I was scouring my room for my charger and I found myself thinking, “I literally cannot find anything in this black hole.”

Matter rotating around a black hole

A lot of us say things like that without really knowing what they mean. Recently I read an article in Astronomy magazine, “Hungriest black holes thwart star growth”.¬†Black holes have always fascinated me (as I’m sure many others) because we can’t know much about them because of their properties. All we know is that they are super massive, thousands of times more massive than regular stars (which are already incomprehensibly massive compared even to the fattest of elephants).

These black holes suck in so much material which stunts star growth. They have very strong gravitational pulls which means these holes absorb all matter within their grasp. Once matter has “entered” the black hole so to speak, it cannot escape. Not even light is fast enough to escape, which is really just the gloomiest thing…not just metaphorically but physically, too. Since there’s no material left surrounding the black hole, there is nothing to gather together to create a star, to create life, to create light, TO CREATE HAPPINESS. Well, you get my point. If this was the only definition, my room would most certainly be a black hole because it definitely sucks in everything that I need and prevents me from growing as a student by distracting me from my studies (and at it’s current state of messiness I’m sure light can’t even escape, either).

Many people are turning against funding for NASA because they think that it is too much of a money-suck. Some also think the Mars rover is a waste of time and resources. To that all I have to say is: if they cancel funding for NASA how will I procrastinate doing my homework by uploading pictures from the weekend if I can’t understand the logic behind cleaning my room so it doesn’t turn into a black hole and stunt my growth as a student and it keeps all the light and therefore happiness out?

So to take the shortest path possible…funding for NASA = LIGHT & HAPPINESS.

I’m pretty sure if you asked anyone if they considered landing on the moon to be one of the most significant accomplishments of the past century they would say yes. And who made that happen? NASA.

So honestly, unless you’re a happiness hater, why wouldn’t you support NASA?