Posts by Dylan Stableford
Dylan Stableford at Yahoo News 1 day ago
If you're a NASA researcher stationed in Alaska, you're probably pretty used to seeing the aurora borealis, the sky-watching spectacle better known as the northern lights.
So staffers at the Poker Flat Research Range in Fairbanks decided to do what any bored teenager would do: fire rockets at it! Four small, suborbital sounding rockets were launched from the facility to collect data on the auroras, which are caused by the interaction of solar wind from the sun and the Earth's atmosphere.
According to Slate, one of the experiments — the Mesospheric Inversion-layer Stratified Turbulence (MIST) — releases a compound called "tri-methyl aluminum tracer, which creates white expanding clouds" that "can be used to measure the amount of turbulence in the mesosphere, the layer of atmosphere about the stratosphere."
Dylan Stableford at Yahoo News 1 day ago
A newly elected Texas state lawmaker is under fire for a divisive Facebook post asking Muslim visitors attending an event at the state capitol in Austin to pledge allegiance to the United States.
The event, Texas Muslim Capitol Day, was organized by the Texas chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
"Today is Texas Muslim Capital [sic] Day in Austin," Molly White, a House Republican, wrote on her Facebook page Thursday. "The House is in recess until Monday. Most Members including myself are back in District. I did leave an Israeli flag on the reception desk in my office with instructions to staff to ask representatives from the Muslim community to renounce Islamic terrorist groups and publicly announce allegiance to America and our laws. We will see how long they stay in my office."
The posts drew immediate criticism from many Facebook users.
"I came here to call you a bigot, but I see everyone else beat me to it," John Glover wrote.
A rare megamouth shark washed ashore dead in the Philippines this week, wildlife officials said. The 15-foot shark, a Megachasma pelagios (or "giant mouth of the deep"), was discovered on the beach in Marigondon, Pio Duran, in Albay province. The totally terrifying-looking specimen is one of less than 70 ever seen in the world, according to Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines.
The shark, nicknamed "Toothless," was preserved in ice by local villagers.
It's the first megamouth shark to be documented since July, when an 18-foot Megachasma pelagios was caught by Filipino fishermen. The first confirmed megamouth shark sighting was in 1976, when a deep-sea anchor accidentally caught one near Hawaii. Most have been found in Japan, the Philippines and Taiwan.
The blizzard that dumped nearly three feet of snow across New England was no match for a 28-year-old Massachusetts woman who gave birth to twins during the massive snowstorm.
Paticia Strickland, of Worcester, Mass., started having contractions as the storm was raging — and just after the roads in Massachusetts were ordered closed. An ambulance soon arrived to pluck her from her home.
"All the snow gets plowed to my front door, so to get me out there, we were slipping on ice," Strickland told WCVB-TV. "One of the paramedic guys fell. It was crazy."
As soon as she got into the ambulance, her water broke, she said.
"Like a minute later, I had another big, sudden urge to push, and my son was, like, halfway out of me," said Strickland, who who was 35 weeks pregnant. "That was so crazy, because I just reached down and I could feel him there. I was like, 'Oh my God, my baby's here!'"
Worcester got 34.5 inches of snow, a single-storm record for the central Massachusetts city.
Near-brawl breaks out at city council meeting to heal wounds between police and public after Ferguson unrest
A city council meeting in St. Louis turned ugly on Wednesday when the business manager of the city's police union got into an altercation with people he called "anti-police radicals."
The board meeting was hosted to get public input on a proposed bill, sponsored by Alderman Antonio French, which would establish a civilian oversight board to review and rule on complaints about police work. The bill was prompted by racially charged protests that erupted in Ferguson last year following the fatal shooting of Michael Brown, a black teenager, by white officer Darren Wilson.
But about an hour into the hearing, Jeff Roorda, a state representative who also serves as the business manager of the St. Louis Police Officers Association, stood up and called for order.
Alderman Terry Kennedy, the committee's chairman, responded, "Excuse me, first of all, you do not tell me my function."
The meeting was adjourned. No arrests or injuries were reported.
When the state of Texas abolished the customary practice of honoring the last meal requests of prisoners on death row, food photographer Henry Hargreaves decided to recreate the final meals ordered by some of America's most infamous killers before their executions.
"I wondered what people actually requested," Hargreaves told Yahoo News in a recent interview. "I thought it would be something really powerful to represent visually."
Hargreaves' images of the last meals ordered by death row inmates provide a fascinating, if chilling, peek into the minds — and appetites — of killers, including Timothy McVeigh, who requested two pints of mint chocolate chip ice cream as his last meal.
"It's a highly emotional topic and one that polarizes people," Hargreaves said. "It's been in the news a lot lately."
Hargreaves says he understands the criticism.
On the heels of her endlessly entertaining debate with rapper 2 Chainz over the legalization of recreational marijuana, Nancy Grace picked up the anti-pot argument on Tuesday with fellow HLN host Dr. Drew.
Dr. Drew argued that the legal sale of weed is a good thing for those who believe marijuana is dangerous, because states that reap the benefits of pot tax revenues could use that money to fund more drug rehabilitation programs. Grace countered that such logic is "bass ackwards."
"When you don't know a horse, Drew, look at his track record," Grace said. "Of all the years I've prosecuted — and now — add on all these years I've been on air, never once has the federal government, or state governments for that matter, said, 'You know what? Let's don't spend all these millions of dollars on pork. Let's try to rehab people. Let's do that, let's put our money into rehab.' It ain't happenin', Drew!"
"Politicians are not going to give money to rehab!" Grace shouted.
New York City was spared the brunt of the massive snowstorm that hit parts of Long Island, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts on Tuesday.
And like many New Yorkers, Jon Stewart was unimpressed by what he called "Blizzapocalypsegeddon '15."
"My guess is, if you are watching this program, New York is gone," Stewart said at the top of "The Daily Show" Tuesday. "I hope you remember us for our world-class pizza and bridges, and not for our tendency to tell people who innocently happen to have their eyes locked with our eyes to go f--- themselves."
The "Daily Show" host spent the beginning of his show eviscerating the media's breathless coverage of the storm, including CNN's "Blizzardmobile."
"Blizzardmobile? Settle down, Batman, it’s a Ford Explorer,” Stewart quipped.
But the Comedy Central star admitted that New York City-based news organizations were left with few options when the storm largely missed Manhattan.
For millions of people digging out from nearly three feet of snow, the massive snowstorm that walloped New England on Tuesday wasn't exactly pretty. But, from248 miles above, the storm looked gorgeous.
Terry Virts, an American astronaut aboard the International Space Station, captured a stunning nighttime image of the blizzard and posted it to Twitter.
East coast blizzard pic.twitter.com/uzLls6hBe1
It wasn't the only bird's-eye view of the blizzard to surface. Several satellite images released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration showed the storm as it moved up the East Coast.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has agreed to testify before the House Select Committee investigating the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, CNN reports.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, the panel’s Democratic ranking member, told CNN Tuesday that Clinton had agreed to testify before the committee late last year.
“The chairman asked me back in September to inquire as to whether Secretary Clinton would testify,” Cummings said. “She immediately said she would and that she wanted to come in December, but if December did not work, she would come in January. She said, ‘I’ll do it, period.’ The fact is, she was very clear. She did not hesitate for one second.”
Earlier this week, Yahoo News reported that some Democrats on the committeeaccused Republican members of conducting the committee’s work without them and withholding information that would undermine the credibility of the panel itself.
“We’ll see,” she told NBC in an interview. “I'm not going to prejudge it.”