Breath-Taking Aurora Video


I hate to bang on about the same thing, but I saw this video and just HAD to share it. Not only is it an amazing feat in itself, but the images around 1.30 are breathtaking. I sooo want to see this now.

Perhaps because he could no longer fly on the Concorde, Air France passenger Nate Bolt decided to simulate what it would be like to fly from San Francisco to Paris—in just two minutes.

In reality, the flight lasted about 11 hours, taking off from California at 3:35 p.m. local time, crossing over Greenland at night, and landing in France at 11:10 a.m. local time.

But instead of packing books and B-movies, Bolt came prepared with a unique form of onboard entertainment: time-lapse photography equipment.

With a whole row to himself, Bolt had lots of room to set up a digital SLR camera, a tripod, and a time-lapse controller, arranged to take pictures out the plane window every 2 to 30 seconds, depending on exposure time. That’s about a picture every two miles, Bolt calculates.

In total he racked up 2,459 still frames that, when strung together, result in a two-minute movie of the world going by.

This is pretty cool in and of itself. But in the dark of night Bolt got an even cooler surprise: a vivid green aurora borealis.

The photographer said couldn’t see the northern lights with his naked eyes, according to The Christian Science Monitor. But when he previewed the long-exposure shots on his camera, the auroras leapt from the LCD screen.

With some viewers wondering how Bolt saw northern lights from a south-facing window, he replied in his YouTube comments:

“Basically, SF to Paris takes you over Greenland and the Arctic Circle, because that’s the straightest route (crazy, I know), so from that location and flying altitude, you can see northern lights from both sides of the plane.”

Care of National Geographic: Victoria Jaggard

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Can This Really Be True?


After the terrible performance of last years world cup, Wayne Rooney seems to be finding his form again (regardless of his foul mouth and awful attitude in general). This can only be good for English football and football in general.

But have you ever wondered of the price of insuring a footballer of this calibre? I don’t know about you, but it’s kept me awake at night……. (er….) So our friends over at confused.com have done the calculation for us. Enjoy:

Maybe I won’t complain about my car premium’s again………….

Top Gear Vs Tesla


I am a HUGE Top Gear fan. I think the programme is hosted by witty, entertaining people and that have the right mix of enthusiasm for what they do, love of what they talk about and entertainment value for the masses.

True, the show has deviated somewhat from its initial birth of a “motoring show” to a more “entertainment show involving fast cars”. Which is just fine for me. If I want motoring for the car enthusiast, I’ll switch over to Fifth Gear. I want to see a Ferrari race against a plane from the south of France to London. I want to see caravans get blown up. I want to see epic journey’s across the north pole in a sup’d-up-pick-up truck while they flaunt the fact there are no drink-drive laws there to stop them partaking in a G&T while crashing through an iceberg.

One of the things I truly love about this show though, is the tongue in cheek approach they have to many things. Take for example, the episode featuring the reliant robin. Genius. Poked fun at it, at the drivers and the image of the vehicle, without being overly insulting to something that, thanks to Del Boy, is a national icon.

So when electric sports car company Tesla gave their new baby to the Top Gear boys to review, I honestly thought them to be a tad fool hardy. This show is world-renowned. It is run, produced and hosted by petrol heads. They are going to start off being slightly against an electrical car in any case. Couple that with their general approach to reviewing things (eg. Reliant Robin), I thought Tesla might have expected a few little digs. And to be honest, they got it! The show was broadcast back in December 2008, so why they have left it sooooo long to object is beyond me (publicity I’m guessing).

But things seem to be hotting up now. Generally, the BBC don’t tend to make a big song and dance about legal action. Lets look at the Mexico incident a few months back, where the Top Gear presents (pattern emerging here?) insulted a Mexican car and therefore the Mexican people. The ambassador for Mexico kicked off, but the Beeb coolly dealt with it. This case, however, Tesla seem determined to keep in the public eye (again, publicity purposes?). I found this response from the Executive Producer of Top Gear, Mr. Andy Willman.

So it seems Aunty is showing a little fighting spirit. I think they should win. Tesla will get the publicity for its Scalextric car and we can all go on with our viewing pleasure of one of the greatest shows: Top Gear.

CLARKSON FOR PRIME MINISTER!!!!!