Declassified: The True Tale of Project Orion.
Artist's conception of an Orion vessel about to depart from Mars orbit. (Credit: NASA). Ever wondered if man will ever head to the stars? Certainly, the magnitude… [more]
Astro-Challenge: Daytime Planet Spotting!
A daytime Venus post-occultation in 2007! (Photo by Author). Here’s a fine neighborhood experiment to try. Next time the Moon is around 1st or Last Quarter, show… [more]
Astro-Event: What’s in a Name? Black & Blue Moons through 2020.
The August 2011 Full Moon rising as seen from Astroguyz HQ. (Photo by Author). (Note: This week’s lunar-related event is a fitting tribute to the life of astronaut… [more]
30.10.2012: A Weekend of Apocalyptic Fun at the NecronomiCon!
How many Baktuns in a Pectun again? (Credit: Stone Hill.org). The “busy ‘Con season” for Astroguyz has arrived. Sure, it may have came and went with only one event,… [more]
Week 4-The Quest for Dark Skies: Into the Appalachians.
A very slender Moon... (All photos by Author). The mountains always beckon. In the end, all astronomers must heed the call of dark, pristine skies and head into… [more]
The Top Astronomy Events for 2013.
It has arrived. Welcome to our official guide to the fascinating, the unique, and the down right bizarre in the realm of astronomy coming to a sky near you in 2013.… [more]
Our trusty solar scope… I planned to get a flu shot on return to the States, honest. We alluded last week to our recent (and still lingering) ’bout with pneumonia. Yup. We caught the flu that was burning right through the expat community in Spain just before leaving, and despite our valiant efforts, it decided [...]
Catching the first sunrise of 2017. We’re back! The last week of 2016 saw us successfully make the jump back across the big pond that is the Atlantic Ocean back to the United States. It also saw us contract a flu that was sweeping the Spanish expat community of Jimena de la Frontera just days [...]
On the flight… We’re back! 48 hours and one military hop later, and we’re back in the US of A. From the wild hills of Andalusia Spain, we now once again find ourselves in the land of strip malls, and Ihops, all in time for the looming Christmas weekend. Unlike our outward leg earlier this [...]
Launch of a Pegasus XL rocket. Credit: NASA. Wanna see a unique rocket launch? We’ve got one coming right up later today, when NASA’s Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS) takes to the skies. But this isn’t any ordinary rocket launch; CYGNSS will deploy from the belly of a specially designed L-1011 aircraft Stargazer on [...]
An existential crisis of a year… So, how did your year go? If your a member of humanity on planet Earth, 2016 might have been, well, a bit of a downer. Yeah, we’re talking about the major downturn of things for the worse, politically speaking. Now, I know what you’re thinking. “Great, yet another pundit, [...]
A closeup screenshot of a double shadow transit in 2017. What’s new under the Sun? There’s certainly no shortage of astronomy apps out there competing for your hard-earned cyber dollar. Increasingly, these pocket planetarium sky programs are also showing up at public star parties, as glowing mobile phones now punctuate the darkness, waving at the [...]
On sale now! Note: This week, we’re hearkening back to ‘Classic Astroguyz’ with a book review. We largely stopped doing reviews since we started traveling long term over this past year, as it’s tough to receive hard cover advance copies… but hey, we can still read pdf versions, and will still conduct reviews of electronic [...]
On sale now! Hey, we wrote another story! This week, we thought we’d offer the first 1,000 words of our latest eclipse-fueled scifi tale Class Field Trip for our very favorite price: free. Like what you see? You can read the entire tale here. And we’ve got lots more science fiction tales at our Amazon [...]
Will this scene ever become reality? Image credit: SpaceX Would you go to Mars? Last week, SpaceX’s Elon Musk made a seemly bold announcement, as he outlined how humanity could colonize Mars. It was exhilarating stuff, for sure. Elon’s the closest thing we have to a real-life Tony Stark, one of the new generation of [...]
A thing of the past? What does the near future of human civilization have in store? If there’s one thing we’re terrible at as a species, it’s predicting change. Looking at predictions of the past is an instructive exercise in the folly of attempting to prognosticate. The biggest hazard appears to be the mere projection [...]
Charming lane, or major thoroughfare? And here, we thought we knew all there was of US vs UK culture. Sure, we knew a truck is a lorry, a boot was a trunk, and the whole fries-are-chips, chips-are-crisps thing. We’d accidentally avoided long stays in the UK in our 20+ plus years in the U.S. Air [...]
Probing the universe… or is it the other way around? It’s a chicken and egg question that comes around every so often in cosmology. Were we created to live in the Universe, or was the cosmos fine-tuned for us? That is, was everything we see arranged just so we had to arise? We’re currently reading [...]
My view for the next few months… There. I said it. One sure way to carry through with an intended goal, is to announce it to the world. Tell no one, and you always have a viable way out. In a way, keeping something under wraps can doom a project to failure. Hey, I finally [...]
The humans were here. (Photo by author) Are we actually living in a new geological era? Last month, the Anthropocene Working Group met in Oslo, Norway and made the tentative recommendation that we are now living in the Anthropocene Era, an age where humans are the predominant drivers of change on the planet.
Waiting on the train… How do you get from point A to B? This past weekend, we turned in our rental car and made the transition from dangerous foreign driver in a strange land, to being a wandering, car-dodging tourist on foot in urban London.
An artist’s conception of the strange surface of Proxima Centauri B. Image credit: ESO By now, you’ve heard the news. Yesterday, astronomers at the European Southern Observatory made the formal announcement that we expected was forthcoming: our nearest stellar neighbor, Proxima Centauri, hosts an exoplanet. And of course, the SEO-hungry media quickly morphed the announcement from [...]
Time to contemplate the cosmos… All right. I know that, by now, much good ink (real and cyber) has been spilled over KIC 8462852. I also know that I’m probably not the very last science writer to turn our attention towards this strange star, drudged up in the Kepler Space Telescope data. And things have [...]
Passing the time in Cardiff, Wales. Seriously, can we just move on to 2017 already? There’s a great scene in the British comedy series Misfits where a time traveler accidentally botches a plan to kill Hitler and drops his mobile phone during the attempt. You’d think the Fuhrer would’ve built a concentration camp just for [...]
Standing amid stones… Well, we took the leap late last week, and jumped north into the (currently) United Kingdom. The post-Brexit jump for the U.S. dollar, and the accompanying fall of the price of rental cars and airline tickets fueled this decision, along with a desire to escape the August summer heat in Morocco.
The Sun sets on another productive (?) day. It’s a daily battle that every writer must struggle with. There’s a great scene in the British TV sitcom Spaced, where Daisey sits down and prepares to engage in the act of writing. As she looks around her, she sees chaos. Dishes needing to be washed. Pots [...]
Goats… in Trees! Headed to the beach in Morocco this summer? Our recent adventures along the country’s Atlantic coast brought us to the “Windy City of Africa” Essaouira. And, as is always the case, our thoughts rapidly turned to the eternal question of ‘where to run?’ without twisting an ankle.
Exploring Azemmour. Greetings from sunny Morocco. We fully planned this week on writing up a full runner’s guide to El Jadida, we really did. We did make a short stop there for five days earlier this week, en route from Casablanca to Essaouira. And we even did a few reconnaissance runs around our suburban neighborhood. [...]
Say what? (Photo by author). Sometimes, we’re traveling so fast and passing through regions with several languages, that we never do learn them properly. Such is our current predicament in Morocco, a glorious mix of French, Arabic and a dash of indigenous Berber mixed in. Now, we’ll admit that we’ve taken classes in both French [...]
Scenic El Hank lighthouse at sunset. Most tourists briefly transit the port city of Casablanca en route to further afield. And while the largest city in Morocco is more of the economic engine of the country than a touristic stop, it’s one of those towns that dot each region filling a vital role: it’s a [...]
Rocking the Kasbah along the Rabat waterfront… It’s here. Remember a few weeks back when we wrote about keeping up a running regimen while traveling? Well, we forgot one of the most important moving parts of the whole shtick: where to run. If you travel and stay at hostels and Air BnBs like we do, [...]
What’s in your travelling medical kit? It’s a reality we plan for, nearly every excursion. Sickness, injuries, and health issues are a fact of life, and an extra stress while traveling. It can also be extra stressful when you’re traveling solo, and there’s no one to run out to the local pharmacy and pantomime for [...]
Timeless wisdom… Do you park your brain in neutral when you travel? Indie travel really pulls you out of your element and plops you down wide-eyed in a new and strange place. More than ever, this is the time when you need to be alert to your new surroundings, not buried face-first in your smartphone… [...]
The alleyways of Assilah, Morocco. This week, we’d like to talk about the importance of not having a plan. Sure, we’ve talked about the virtues of careful planning during any impeding trek in the past, and how it can make or break a trip. What we want to address this week might be better termed [...]
Follow the arrow… We’ve arrived. As we mentioned in last week’s dispatch, our mission this past weekend was to exit Spain into Morocco, for a brand new 90 day reset on our visa… and of course, to explore brave new lands. First off, everything went off with ‘nary a hitch. We ditched the rental in [...]
The Pillars of Hercules beckon… Image credit: Dave Dickinson There’s an old adage that says no battle plan actually survives combat, and the same could be said of travel. This weekend sees us on the move once again, getting ready and in position to jump across the straits of Gibraltar from Spain into Morocco.
How many pairs of footwear do YOU travel with? How do you maintain an exercise regimen whilst traveling? And no, we’re not talking about skipping down to the hotel gym before buffet breakfast, although we’ve done that as well. We’re talking about staying true to a regimen while independently traveling.
Our humble station. There’s another insidious danger that awaits unwary solar astronomers. This coming Monday on May 9th, the planet Mercury transits the fair face of our host star as seen from our Earthly vantage point. Unlike, Venus, Mercury is tiny, meaning amateurs everywhere will be scrambling to make solar filters for their telescopes this [...]
On sale now. Ready for some of the very best in science fiction? Every year since 1966, the Nebula Awards recognize the best of the best in all that is speculative fiction. It’s a tough call, sure, boiling and distilling down the field from all of the diverse and excellent sci-fi prose that’s out there. But [...]
Working by the fire… Wow. Let me tell you about our latest addiction. As long time fans of this weekly column know, we’re long time travelers. We’ve stayed in many a hostel and hotel of various configurations, and we’ve always thought that there should be another niche, something between a weekend hotel and a full [...]
We can now see Gibraltar from our workspace… Well, our time in Jimena de la Frontera is just about at an end. It has been a great stay in a tiny Andalusian white pueblo town, a foothill village topped with a stunning 9th century Moorish castle. We suspect you’ll be hearing more about Jimena soon, [...]
NOT a fake… Image credit: Dave Dickinson Alright. We’re going to touch on a hot button issue in astrophotography on this week’s soapbox rant. After years of watching the discussion come ’round, we’re going to add our two cents. When it comes to post-processing, how far is too far? When is an image no longer [...]
On Sale Now! We couldn’t resist. Our latest science fiction tale is live and available on Amazon.com, and we thought this weekend that we’d harken back a bit and offer readers the first 1000 words free. You can read Peak Season and other original scifi tales by your’s truly in their entirety. Peak Season [...]