Earth Inspiring Stories

Amazon Rainforest Fire:

How to spot the FAKE photos as Twitter reacts to the devastation

In the past year, Brazil has been hit over and over again with devastating forest fires, especially in the Amazon region, so Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook accounts have been blowing up with posts and pictures with the hashtag #AmazonRainforest being the most popular among them.

According to satellite data from the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), in Brazil alone, there are 80 percent more fires in 2019 than there were last year. However, it seems like some of the pictures being shared in relation to the devastation are inaccurate.

More than half of the fires in Brazil are in its Amazon region, and staggering satellite images show just how many fires there are.

Satellite images from NASA and NOAA are giving an accurate portrayal of how far the destructive fire and smoke has spread across the country, but many photos being shared on social media are quite misleading, even if they were meant to be supportive. As a result, users are being asked to stop sharing inaccurate photos, most of which are from fires that happened 30 years ago.

One of these pictures was retweeted over 15,000 times with the caption: “For three weeks, the Amazon RAINFOREST has been burning.

“Fire frequency in Brazil has increased +82% due to droughts, increased heat, and land-use change (logging, industry, & agriculture).”

The following image is actually an Alamy Stock Photo from a climate website called ALERT back in February of this year.

Amazon rainforest fires: All four of these are inaccurate, the top left being California in 2013 (Image: TWITTER)

This second post that included four photos was uploaded to Twitter with a caption bemoaning Brazil’s tragedy, but actually none of the photos have anything to do with the August 2019 Amazonian fires.

The top left photo was liked on Twitter over 4,500 times but was taken during a forest fire in California and uploaded to the US Department of Agriculture’s Flickr account back in 2013. The second is from a 1989 Amazon forest fire, according to The Guardian.

The third picture is from the same 1989 fire, and the fourth image is a heat map from InfoAmazonia showing the extent of forest fires in the Amazon from 2000-2014.

Kendell Jenner retweeted another viral post to her more than 28 million followers, but neither of the two photos are actually related to the recent forest fires.

The image on the right is a picture of fire in Serbia, while the left was taken by photographer Daniel Beltrá in 2014 for articles on fires in Sweden.

Yet another image captured for Getty by Lauro Alves posted on Wednesday shows a fire at Brazil’s Taim Ecological Station in 2013.

Lastly, Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio shared an image of fires burning against a wall of green forest, but this photo is originally from February 2018 in the article, “Carbon emissions from Amazon wildfires could ‘counteract’ deforestation decline”.

So, beware of the misleading pictures and check the sources before you believe what you see!

How to spot the FAKE photos as Twitter reacts to the devastation
In the past year, Brazil has been hit over and over again with devastating forest...

Health Lifestyle

What Can I Do If I Can’t Sleep?

Experts believe that if you or your kids can’t sleep, trying to force it will actually make things worse. If you wake up too early and think that staying in bed will force you to go back to sleep, you’d be wrong.

Trying to make yourself sleep when you can’t, will lead to stress and tension making the situation even worse. On top of that, if this goes on for any length of time, it could lead to serious insomnia.

According to studies performed at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine getting out of bed when you can’t sleep will decease 70 to 80% of acute insomnia and will not turn into chronic insomnia.

During the study, researchers observed the time in bed and the sleeping habits of 416 people over the course of a year.  Many of these participants were good sleepers before the study.  Once the study started, 20% experienced acute insomnia, having problems falling asleep or staying asleep 3 or more times in a week, expanding to 2 weeks and some cases 3 months.

45% of the participants eventually returned to good sleepers but 7% who suffered from insomnia ended up with chronic insomnia for approximately as long as 3 months.  Those who chose to restrict their time in bed were more likely to get back into good sleeping habits.  Others that chose to stay in bed were likely to suffer from insomnia and eventually become chronic.

Experts believe that if you cannot sleep, spend the time reading, writing what you have put off, or some other activity.   Chances are, you will probably go back to sleep faster and have a better night’s sleep than if you chose to stay in bed and become stressed.

What You Should Not Do:

Michael Perlis, Ph.D., director and author of the study at the Penn Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program there are stumbling blocks of prolonged sleep opportunity, which can lead to your misalignment with your actual sleeping abilities.

People with insomnia usually extend their sleep opportunities by going to bed earlier, getting out of bed late, and then taking naps.   Unfortunately, this is a short-term fix because the problem over the long-term will create an imbalance between your current sleep ability and your current sleep opportunities which can lead to insomnia.

People will often overcompensate loss of sleep by changing the sleep schedule.  Choosing to stay awake instead of forcing sleep is a better strategy for the treatment of insomnia in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which has been announced by the American College f Physicians and is a better treatment.

Sticking by a better sleep and wake-up schedule will help regulate your sleep within a matter of 3 to 5 days.

Your bed should be reserved for sleep or sex, not for reading, writing or watching television. According to Michael Grander, another author & director of Sleep and Health Research at the University of Arizona College of Medicine, believes you should limit your time awake in bed to half an hour a week.

 

Experts believe that if you or your kids can’t sleep, trying to force it will actually make things worse. If you wake up too early and think...

Lifestyle Tech News Vacation

Virgin Galactic Unveils its Spaceport

The countdown for Virgin Galactic’s “Gateway to Space” has truly begun as it edges closer to being the first publicly-traded space tourism company to successfully take customers into space.

A week ago, the company showed off its new New Mexico spaceport to the public, and it looks like those first $250,000-ticket tourists are in for the ride of their life. The facility is part of the state-run Spaceport America in Las Cruces, New Mexico, which also hosts facilities for SpaceX, EXOS Aerospace, and other companies

The interior is reminiscent of a retro, 1960s vibe, but the technology is nothing but modern. You’ll find a barista where you can get a latte for your flight and an interactive walkway to enjoy, as well. The social hub is located on the first floor, called Gaia. Cirrus, the second floor, is where the operations center and mission control is located.

Though the third floor is yet to be revealed, the company has stated that it will be a lounge for their space-flying customers. “Each floor developed has a nice story connecting it back to social activity on Earth,” says designer Jeremy Brown. “Then moving through the mission control part of the building with lighter material references there.”

The Future is Now

Virgin Galactic’s CEO George Whitesides says, “We’re on the home stretch now.” In just a matter of weeks, the aircraft carrier will head to Mojave, where the company’s test facilities are located. There, it will pick up Virgin’s spacecraft, the VMS Unity, and transport it back to New Mexico where test flights will ensue.

Once all the kinks have been worked out and Virgin Galactic is satisfied with their finished product, they’ll be ready to take on their first commercial flight. Currently, 603 reservations have been made for spaceflight, totaling about $80 million in deposits.

They haven’t marketed for tickets since 2014, but once commercial space flights have commenced, Virgin Galactic will be offering new tickets for at least $250,000.

Back in July, the company announced that they would be merging with Social Capital Hedosophia, which will invest $800 million for a 49% stake in the company. In addition, they’ll trade on the New York Stock Exchange.

You may be thinking, “Who even has enough money sitting around to afford one of these flights?” But you’d be surprised to discover that the company received over 2,500 inquiries for reservations for the first flight in December 2018, and more are clamoring since last week’s unveiling.

When everything is set for that first commercial flight, customers will board the Unity, which will be attached to the underside of the aircraft Eve, and once the airplane flies to around 50,000 feet, the rocket will detach and launch into space where passengers will get a stunning view of both space and Earth.

For a few minutes, they’ll be free from the restraints of their seats to experience the weightlessness until it’s time to head back home. In total, the duration of the flight is going to be around 3-4 hours from take-off to landing.

The countdown for Virgin Galactic’s “Gateway to Space” has truly begun as it edges closer to being the first publicly-traded space tourism...

Category - Nature & Tech

Health Humans Are Awesome Inspiring Stories

Social Media Actually Saves a Girl

Ashley Rosenbaum & J.P. Say A Commenter On Social Media Diagnosed Daughter’s Torticollis

Ashley is the mom of a son Fordham, age 4, and a daughter Essex, age 2. Although everyone has an opinion when it comes to online comments but for some reason, the Bachelorette star Ashley Rosenbaum paid close attention to one commenter on social media.

The commenter said that her daughter, Essex should be taken to her doctor.  It seems the commenter’s diagnosis was actually very accurate.

Twisted?

J.P. said this all started when Ashley posted pictures of Essex on social media.  He said someone sent him a message saying that we should get Essex checked out by our doctor because she always looked twisted, leaving the commenter to believe she has torticollis.

The commenter said that getting her checked out was important because their son had the same thing. Torticollis is an issue that involves the muscles of the neck to tilt downward.  Tortus means twisted in Latin and collum means neck.  It is suggested if your baby has suffered from this condition from birth, it’s medically called congenital muscular torticollis.

Wry Neck is another term for this condition which is pointed out by a disproportional, lopsided position of the head or neck.  This condition is caused by a number of reasons.

Ashley Rosenbaum & J.P. Say A Commenter On Social Media Diagnosed Daughter’s Torticollis

Ashley is the mom of a son Fordham, age 4, and a daughter Essex, age 2. Although everyone has an opinion when it comes to online comments but for some reason...

Cool Stories Earth Humans Are Awesome

Find Out How LEGO Has Managed To Run On 100% Renewable Energy

Not only has LEGO earned a place in the Guinness World Book of Records but achieved their goal running renewable energy a good 3 years before their initial plan.

LEGO was launched on August 10, 9132 in Billund Denmark and is the leading manufacturer of a children’s toy famously known as LEGO Building Bricks!  They completed their wind farm off the coast of Ireland which uses 258 megawatts of energy.  They constructed an enormous life-sized wind turbine made out of LEGOs to honor the occasion.

LEGO CEO, Bali Padda, said they worked very hard to leave a positive impact on the planet and they are very excited about the inauguration of the Burbo Bank Extension wind farm. This is not the first time LEGO has been involved in renewable energy.

They own approximately one-third of the German-based Borkum Riggrund I offshore wind farm and 25% of the newly-minted Burbo Bank.

The CEO said they plan to continue investing in renewable energy to help form a better future for the builders of tomorrow.  Back to the Guinness World Record, they achieved their place by historically building the largest LEGO brick turbine.

It was constructed out of more than 146,000 LEGO bricks and it took their team over 600 hours to complete, transport, and reassemble the masterpiece at the  Liverpool ONE shopping center in England.

After reassembly, the structure was measured by officials using a measuring tape and a hydraulic crane.  If you want to see this massive, magnificent LEGO wind turbine, it’s been moved to the LEGOLAND Winsor Resort in England.

It’s About The Children:

LEGO said they have gone to great lengths to promote renewable energy because it’s about the next generation being taught about the value of sustainable power.  They know their role models are children and plan to continue taking action for reducing the environmental impact as a company.

They continue looking for ways to inspire children from all over the world by engaging them in environmental and social issues.

In 2018, LEGO released its first sustainable set of plant-based bricks made from sugar cane.  A few months later, they introduced their LEGO Creator Expert toy which is a miniature version that functions as a wind turbine for children.

This amazing company with its incredible vision is well on its way to provide 100% environmentally-friendly packaging and merchandise by 2030!

Way To Go LEGO!

Not only has LEGO earned a place in the Guinness World Book of Records but achieved their goal running renewable energy a good 3 years before their initial plan.

LEGO was launched on August 10, 9132 in Billund Denmark and is the leading manufacturer of a...

Animals Nature & Tech Science

Heads Up! Cockroaches Are Becoming Almost Impossible To Control!

Studies have shown that the cockroach has developed a resistance to bug sprays and might actually become impossible to control with chemicals.

New research published by Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana believes there is a strain of German cockroaches, known as Blatella germanica L, which are becoming difficult to get rid of as future generations are going to be increasingly immune to our efforts to control them.

Scientists have strongly stated that these insects must be controlled as they threaten human health. They can spread bacteria and their feces triggers allergies and asthma in both children and adults.

A Losing Battle

A professor in the Department of Entomology, Michael Scharf, said: “This is a previously unrealized challenge in cockroaches”.  He led a 6-month study that was then published in the Scientific Reports journal.  He believes these insects are becoming resistant to many insecticides which will make controlling them almost impossible using chemicals alone.

This species of cockroaches cannot survive in areas without humans and thrive in warm indoor places with access to food and water.  This statement was made by the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences.

Purdue researchers believe insecticides used to remove the spread come in different classes and each works differently for eliminating cockroaches.  Some of these sprays contain a blend of multiple classes to ensure that at least one will impact these very tough insects.  New experiments are planned to test these sprays’ effectiveness.

German roaches were collected from apartments in Indianapolis and Danville.  Chemicals were purchased from Univar Solutions.  During the first test, 3 kinds of insecticides were rotated for 3 months before repeating the process.  The second test had a mixture of 2 insecticides for a period of 6 months. In the third test, scientists used a single insecticide on roaches that had low resistance and ran the test for another 6 months.

In the first rotation, researchers said they could keep the population down but failed to reduce it.  During the mixture test, nothing worked and instead the population started to grow.

What happened next was really shocking!

In a single insecticide test, scientists discovered they were able to eliminate the roach population because of the low starting resistance in the chosen insecticide.  That said, not all was good news.  With another single insecticide experiment the population with only 10% resistant but managed to grow.

Scharf believes that cockroaches will survive a certain treatment and essentially become immune to the insecticide in the future and that includes their offspring.  They have also gained resistance to other classes of insecticides even if the insects were never exposed to the treatments and never had a previous resistance.

He went on to say that resistance will increase four or six-fold in just one generation.  He said no one had any idea that something like this could happen so fast.

Female cockroaches have a 3-month reproductive cycle which will bring in another 50 offspring. Even a number this small can lead to a lot of trouble down the road.  It is suggested that even if a population is wiped out by one working bug spray, they could spring back in a matter of a few months.

Further research will have to be conducted to come up with a plan for removing cockroaches from the human population.  Chemicals have become a concern among most people, so how strong will a new variety of bug spray have to be to control the problem?  Adding to that, how long would a new bug spray last before these tough insects become immune to that as well?

That said, insects have been around since the beginning of time, so they might just survive us as well!

Studies have shown that the cockroach has developed a resistance to bug sprays and might actually become impossible to control with chemicals.

New research published by Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana believes there is a strain of German...

City Life Health

Science Proves Cat Ladies Aren’t Crazy

This is for all you cat-lovers out there – it turns out that you were a lot smarter than you thought when you decided to have a cat for a pet as studies are showing they’re the solution to decreasing stress, anxiety, and improving your cardiovascular health.

Somewhere around 68% of American households have pets according to NIH, and all animal companions provide positive benefits, but scientists are seeing that cats are exceptional mood and health boosters.

Yes, they’re entertaining and great for keeping away loneliness, but they’re also good for your heart. Scientists at the University of Minnesota’s Stroke Institute actually did a ten-year study to discover how cats benefit cardiovascular health with over 4,000 participants. The results were phenomenal; it turns out that cats are crucial for decreasing stress and anxiety.

Compared to humans who don’t own cats, cat-owners may have a reduced risk of experiencing a heart attack by 30 percent. In addition, since cats simply love getting petted on your lap, they’re perfect for those times when you need a morale boost – both physically and emotionally.

While you’re petting your cat, heart rate, blood pressure, and stress levels all go down. Dogs can do similarly, but the problem is that they also encourage stress since they require more attention than cats do.

Cats Are Good For You

Some people might have a thing against cats because of allergies, but actually, if you are exposed to cats more as a child, you’re less likely to develop allergies and infections. In fact, living with a cat can also reduce the likelihood of your developing asthma! The scientists also found that after interacting with a cat, kids with autism displayed better communication efforts.

And there’s more! A cat’s purr has healing powers – no, I’m not pulling your leg on this one. The frequency of a cat’s purr falls between 20 to 140 Hz, which helps mend broken bones and wounds. Cats help keep depression away, which has been associated to developing various types of illness.

Doctors should be prescribing a 15-minute dose of playing with a cat every day as it improves your mood and keeps you active! Cats know how to slow down, take it easy, and take a nap. Take a cue from them, and do the same sometimes!

I don’t know if you’ve noticed it, but there are cat videos and posts all over the internet – they seem to be taking over. There are a ton of cat lovers out there, and the war of whether cats of dogs are better has been going on for quite some time, but from the results of these studies, it seems that cats have finally come out the victor!

They’re low-maintenance, relaxing, laid-back, empathetic of human feelings, and easy to be around. So, if you don’t already have one, the doctor’s orders are in: go get a cat – or two, or three!

This is for all you cat-lovers out there – it turns out that you were a lot smarter than you thought when you decided to have a cat for a pet as studies are showing they’re the solution to decreasing stress, anxiety, and improving your cardiovascular...

Inspiring Stories Science

Happy Uplifting Music Will Increase Creativity

A study was performed in 2017 and published in PLOS ONE by Simone Ritter from Radboud University in the Netherlands and Sam Ferguson from the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia. The study showed that listening to happy uplifting music will generate creative innovative solutions in comparison to silence.

Creativity plays a very important role in our world today.  Creativity generates innovative ideas for a wide range of issues that are addressed with new ideas. One question that constantly arises, what promotes creative understanding?

This has been widely debated and studied and even though music has previously shown to benefit cognition, very little is known how listening to music really affects creativity.

Emotional Music

A further study showed that researchers had 155 participants who completed a questionnaire and were then split into different groups.  Each group listened to 4 different styles of music covering calm, sad, anxious, and happy, depending on their positive or negative emotions.  High or low arousal was also taken into consideration and there was one group that just listened to silence.

Once the music started, the participants performed different tasks that would test their different and connecting creative thinking.  Those who scored the highest had come up with the most creative, original solutions. Those who came in with a single possible solution to a given task scored higher in convergent creativity.

Researchers found that those who listened to classical music, or happy music, showed positive demeanor, high arousal, and promoted creativity thinking vs those in silence. The researchers believe that happy music may actually enhance flexibility in thinking.

In turn, additional solutions might not have been taken into consideration if the participants were in silence when trying to create.

The study clearly showed that creativity may be enhanced through music.  Further research could reveal the different ambient sounds that may affect creativity and those participants of diverse cultures, different ages, and levels of musical knowledge.

The authors also believe that further studies may show that music could promote creative thinking for solutions that are inexpensive and efficient for different areas including scientific, educational, and organizational settings.

A study was performed in 2017 and published in PLOS ONE by Simone Ritter from Radboud University in the Netherlands and Sam Ferguson from the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia. The study showed that listening to happy uplifting music will generate...

Cool Stories Earth

Spectacular Images of the Raikoke Volcano Erupting From ISS by NASA

Sitting aboard the International Space Station (ISS) a NASA astronaut was able to capture some stunning images of the Raikoke Volcano as it erupts.

The 2,300ft crater can be clearly seen sending clouds of ash high into the atmosphere.  Located in the Kuril archipelago in the north-west Pacific the volcano had been dormant for almost 100 years before it violently erupted on June 22, sending a huge cloud of ash as far as 8 miles high.  In the images you can see the cloud rising as a column, stopping when it reaches the denser air.

Volcanologists at Michigan tech issued a statement for NASA commenting that the eruption was similar to that of another volcano in the Kurils a decade ago.  The images show a ring of white cloud at the base of the ash column indicating either that air is being drawn in, or perhaps that there is condensation caused by the magma entering the sea.

Raikoke island is quite small, so it is likely that magma flow reached the sea and the fluffy cloud at the base could be the resulting steam.

The huge ash plume has been seen drifting eastward and there are warnings in place for aircraft near the Bering Sea.  Volcanic ash often contains pieces of rock or glass which can be hazardous to aircraft.

Breaching the Stratosphere

Data obtained via satellite shows that the eruption has sent gas into the second layer of the Earth’s atmosphere.  Large amounts of sulfur dioxide in the stratosphere have been detected which NASA says indicates that this is a new injection of the gas.

The stratosphere starts at around 4.3-12 miles above the earth and it is vital to monitor ash plumes that hit this height because they have the ability to remain in the higher levels of the atmosphere for longer.

Other images of the volcano have also been released, alongside those captured by the ISS the NASA’s Terra satellite also captured the incident, as did the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Suomi satellite.

Sitting aboard the International Space Station (ISS) a NASA astronaut was able to capture some stunning images of the Raikoke Volcano as it erupts.

The 2,300ft crater can be clearly seen sending clouds of ash high into the atmosphere.  Located in the Kuril...

Nature & Tech Science

Cassini Finds New Complex Details On Saturn’s Ring

NASA’s spacecraft, Cassini,  has revealed even more intricate details on the rings around Saturn.  The craft’s mission ended two years ago but NASA is still collating data on the planet.  This latest revelations shows new temperatures, colors and textures within the planet’s complex ring system.

In Science magazine, a new paper shows how the rings interact with the particles around them, leading scientists to conclude that the rings are part of the processes that directly impact upon our solar system.

Cassini was able to identify fine details such as patterns and texture which varied in appearance and structure.  Cassini’s close-up images have shown that there are 3 distinct textures present in the rings – clumpy, streaky and smooth areas – that happen with sharp boundaries and are not necessarily connected to any specific characteristics already identified within the rings.

It has also provided maps showing changes in chemistry, temperature and color that exist across Saturn’s rings.  The data was collected initially between December 2016 and April 2017, names by NASA as the Ring Grazing Orbits (December 2016 to April 2017) and between April to September 2017, the Grand Finale of the mission.

Clues about the ring’s origins

Cassini’s observations have allowed NASA scientists to conclude that the outer edge of the ring systems were likely to have been hit at the same time leading to the similarly generated streaks that can be seen in the F ring.  It is likely, therefore, that the rings was not shaped by comets or other space debris at random, but instead by the materials that circle the planet.

The otter mystery found by Cassini was discovered as a result of the  visible and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) detecting weak water-ice bands.  Scientists were surprised to see this in the A ring’s vicinity.  The reflective nature of this water could indicate the presence of less contaminated ice and water bands.

Spectral imaging has also given a great insight into the composition of the rings.  As well as water which was already known, scientists have discovered that there was no ammonia or methane ice.  However, no organic compounds were seen.

The science team have been excited to establish new information about what was going on in the rings but as each question is answered more arise, making the Cassini project one to watch in the months and years to come.

NASA’s spacecraft, Cassini,  has revealed even more intricate details on the rings around Saturn.  The craft’s mission ended two years ago but NASA is still collating data on the planet.  This latest revelations shows new temperatures, colors and...

Animals City Life

Finding the Right Dog Walker

Dogs needs to be exercised every day in order to stay healthy.  This is essential for their physical and mental well-being so if you are unable to walk your dog daily you will need to find a suitable dog walker.

This can be a difficult decision because although anyone can call themselves a dog walker, it doesn’t mean that they have the experience, qualification or expertise to be the right walker for your companion.

Take a look at this guide for choosing a dog walker that meets all your pet’s needs:

Word-of-Mouth Recommendations

Getting good recommendations from other dog parents is probably the best way to start when looking for a dog walker of your own.  Ask them what their experiences have been, talk to other dog owners at the park or ask your vet if they have any particular dog walker they are happy to recommend.

If you do get a good recommendation then be sure to check them out thoroughly before deciding to hire them.

Meet and Greet

Always invite a potential dog walker to meet your dog because your dog needs to be comfortable with them.  If your dog feels shy or wary when they meet new people you need to keep this in mind and give them some time. However, the walker should not be phased by this.  Ideally, they will be calm, assertive and able to read your dog’s behavior and body language.

Ask questions

 The sort of thing you need to know is what will be happening while your dog is with their walker.  Consider the following questions:

  • Where will my dog be walked?
  • Can you accommodate my dog’s needs? If your dog is not particularly well socialized, for example, would the walker be willing to walk him/her alone?  Would they be able to introduce your dog to others gradually?
  • How long will my dog be walked? Make sure you are clear about the specific amount of time your dog will spend walking with their new companion.
  • Will anyone else walk my dog? Many dog walkers work alone, but some are part of larger businesses.  If this is the case you’ll need to know who is likely to be walking your dog.
  • What training do you have? If you are employing a dog walker you want them to have some experience of dogs, ideally professional experience. This is a crucial question to ask or you could end up with someone walking dogs just to earn some extra cash.
  • Have you been walking dogs for long? You need to know how much experience this person has in walking dogs.
  • What training methods do you use? If their training methods do not dovetail with your own you might want to choose someone else.
  • Do you have the relevant licenses and insurance? A legitimate dog walking business is required to have a license and proof on insurance.
  • Are you able to deal with emergencies?
  • Are you trained and certified in canine first aid?

And finally, take the walker for a test walk:

Ask the walker if you can come along for the first walk.  Although they will obviously be on their best behavior you can still get an idea of how they interact with your dog and if your dog likes them.  See how they relate to your dog’s needs, for example, are they sensitive if your older dog needs to walk slowly?

Look to see if they are a good fit.  Look at your dog – how is their body language?  Do they look happy and comfortable with this person? Never feel rushed into making a decision, it is important that your dog feels happy and comfortable on his or her walk and that they are safe.

Dogs needs to be exercised every day in order to stay healthy.  This is essential for their physical and mental well-being so if you are unable to walk your dog daily you will need to find a suitable dog walker.

This can be a difficult decision because...

Animals Cool Stories

Study: Dolphins Form Friendships Based on Shared Interests

Just like humans, male dolphins have been shown to form long-lasting bonds and These ties are formed with those who have similar interests or traits.

It is well known that dolphins live in social groupings, known as pods, and carry out quite complex social interactions. However, this study is another indication of the level of intelligence they possess.

The international group of scientists from Australia, Switzerland and the UK studied dolphins in Shark Bay, Western Australia.  The particular pod of bottlenose dolphins has been observed before and it was discovered that the female pod members had developed a unique method of foraging using marine sponges in order to find food.

This behavior, known as sponging,  has not been seen outside this group and has been passed down from mother to calf.

Male Bonding

The scientists wanted to return to Shark Bay to look specifically at the behavior of the males in the group and studied 124 male bottlenose dolphins in their study which lasted from 2007 to 2015.

They found that some males used the sponging technique while others did not but those that did tend to associate with other sponging males.  They also spent more time foraging than the other males and less time sleeping.

It seems that, like the female dolphins, the males have formed social bonds based on the shared activity of sponging.

Another finding of the study is that the social alliances play a key role in the males’ mating success and that the bonds formed indicate, not only that the males can form social bonds based on similar traits, but also that these bonds can last for decades.

Just like humans, male dolphins have been shown to form long-lasting bonds and These ties are formed with those who have similar interests or traits.

It is well known that dolphins live in social groupings, known as pods, and carry out quite complex social...

Tech News

The Latest, Most Anticipated New Tools Coming To iOS 13!

During Apple’s annual developers’ conference (WWDC) they announced its latest most anticipated new tool for iOS 13.  During the conference, an Apple representative revealed how the setting will look like on various apps including Apple Music, Photos, and News.  It will be available on iPhones through an app with an owl icon and is slated to debut in the fall.

As Dark Mode on Mac was launched last year, it should not be a surprise that the new mode is dark!  So what is all the fuss about?  Simply, experts believe it’s easier on your eyes and possibly will save on your battery power.  That said this is what you can expect:

Its New Look:

As it is a Dark Mode, the color scheme is dark and offers a black background on the phone.  It also comes with a gray keyboard and various icons to keep it from looking to stark or too bright as offered on a white background.

Apple’s support page for installation of the dark mode on Mac states the setting makes it easier to stay focused on your work because the content will stand out while the controls and windows are somewhat in the background. That might possibly be debated.

This feature works on iPhones, iPads, and apps in the Apple environment.  It can be turned on automatically at sunset or the time you schedule it for.

That said, this dark mode is not something conceived by Apple,  it is very popular on various platforms and devices such as Twitter, Samsung Galaxy, smartphones, and Google’s Chrome browser.

Better Battery Life:

Even though some experts have claimed the battery will have a longer life, Apple has not jumped on that bandwagon.

Smartphones use OLED (organic light-emitting diodes) in their displays.  Selecting a black mode on a phone with an OLED display can actually use less power than your basic white background.  Therefore, you could save on power if the display is black causing greater improvement to your battery’s performance.

Also, if you are in a dark environment, you will not stand out with a white background shining in your face!

Easier On Your Eyes:

Apple claims this dark mode on the screen is much easier on your eyes.  It is a welcomed change compared to the very glaring white backgrounds found on many websites and other backgrounds.  It’s been proven that too much stark exposure to white screens can cause eye fatigue and headaches.

Neurobiology Professor at the University of Alabama, Paul Gamlin, said the dark mode might actually be beneficial for sleep.  His studies on cells in the retina showed that the eye powers the circadian rhythms and drives pupil responses.

Using the dark mode on your iPhone in the evening and during the night could have less of an impact on your circadian rhythms, your sleep cycle, and your wake cycle.  Gamlin said that bright light in the evening hours has been known to shift the rhythm in your “central circadian pacemaker”.

On the other side of the coin, Dr. Euna Koo, an ophthalmologist at the Stanford Byers Eye Institute, believes it is much easier for readers to have darker fonts against a lighter background.  She does not believe that the dark mode has an effect on eye health, given the information that is available.

She believes the duration of time is of greater importance than the intensity of the brightness when discussing the effect of this dark mode on eye fatigue and eye health.

I guess, whether the dark mode has any impact on your eye’s health or if the life of your battery is improved, is still up for debate.  What we do know, the colors and text pop out and is a really nice alternative to all that boring white background we have come to accept for so many years.

During Apple’s annual developers’ conference (WWDC) they announced its latest most anticipated new tool for iOS 13.  During the conference, an Apple representative revealed how the setting will look like on various apps including Apple Music...

Earth Science

Floating Islands Could Be Essential for Combating Climate Change

Unless you speak to the most self-assured climate change denier, just about everyone can appreciate the reality of climate change. We just need to look around us and see the ever-changing conditions in which we all live within.

It’s a scary thing, climate change, and it can play a huge role in how we do everything. It’s now an emergency that we must act on as a species: how we react to it, though, will be essential in creating a safer world. Thankfully, people far smarter than myself are working on creating some outside of the box solutions to the problem at hand.

For example, the creation of floating islands that then convert the carbon dioxide into the atmosphere into something else could be the secret. Scientists have been working on coming up with theories on what we can do to stop or at least slow down climate change. If enough of these were built, the research team in Norway and Switzerland believe, we could stop the build-up of so much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

By creating them on large oceanic parts of the planet that aren’t going to be so prone to uncompromising weather, too, we could help to limit the extent of global warming in a relatively short space of time. However, it’s obvious an idea that, at the moment, is still a long way from being complete.

When published as part of the PNAS paper, the proposal, titled ‘Solar Methanol Islands’, was put forward as a wacky but realistic solution to put ourselves back on track to, you know, save the planet.

An interesting (but unlikely) idea

In their announcement of the paper, the lead authors wrote: “Humankind must cease CO2 emissions from fossil fuel burning if dangerous climate change is to be avoided,

“However, liquid carbon-based energy carriers are often without practical alternatives for vital mobility applications. The recycling of atmospheric CO2 into synthetic fuels, using renewable energy, offers an energy concept with no net CO2 emission.”

Apparently, the idea was able to evolve from a Norwegian government request that they start putting fish farms out at the open sea. It was then seen as a problem as these fish farm grids would need an energy source – how would that be possible? And then the idea of such islands began to appear.

By using photovoltaic cells that turn solar energy into actual power, they would also use hydrogen produced and CO2 extracted from the seawater to ensure this is entirely sustainable. Putting it through a reaction, too, they would create a form of methanol that would then be used as a fuel source.

Seemingly, 70 of these islands could be used to make up a single square-kilometer worth of these islands. They would be placed in areas where waves can reach significant heights, that have high water depth, and which are likely to be safe from issues such as a hurricane.

However, before we start thinking we’ve found ‘the’ solution to climate change, slow down. The science team believes they would need around 3.2m of these islands to be made: with production not even started on one, we might need something a bit faster to stop what is quickly becoming the major battle of our time.

Unless you speak to the most self-assured climate change denier, just about everyone can appreciate the reality of climate change. We just need to look around us and see the ever-changing conditions in which we all live within.

It’s a scary thing, climate...

Animals Earth Nature & Tech

A Swarm of Ladybugs in California That Shook the World!

The National Weather Service in San Diego said a huge “echo” appeared on the SoCal radar but discovered it was not rain, instead it was a cloud of ladybugs!  The swarm showed up on the California weather service’s radar map as an 80-mile-wide mass.

This is a phenomenon known as a “bloom”.  Meteorologist Miguel Miller said the bloom appeared on their screen as an amazing 80-miles wide and 80-miles long.  It seems the mass was moving from the San Gabriel Mountains toward San Diego.

The mass of ladybugs was seen moving from Barstow in San Bernadino County, 80 miles south of Riverside which is near Los Angeles.  It literally covered an area over 1,000 square miles.

Meteorologist Mark Moede from the weather service said ladybugs were everywhere and a weather spotter in the San Bernadino Mountains reported an abnormal population of ladybugs which was then linked by the weather service to the sighting.

Bugs, not Clouds!

Casey Oswant, San Diego weather service meteorologist, told the Palm Springs Desert Sun there were a lot of clouds at the time along with this massive bloom.

She said the size of the mass could not have been created by the clouds.  She followed the patch that was heading south in the morning and then disappeared from the screen by noon.  It is not known for certain where the ladybugs were traveling from.

Senior scientist at James W. Cornett Ecological Consultant believes the number of ladybugs needed to create such a massive movement would have turned the skies dark.

Whether this event happened or not, we are all relieved to know they were ladybugs!  Legend has it, if a ladybug lands on your shoulder, you are blessed with luck! Imagine a swarm of ladybugs this massive, that must be luck for a lifetime!

The National Weather Service in San Diego said a huge “echo” appeared on the SoCal radar but discovered it was not rain, instead it was a cloud of ladybugs!  The swarm showed up on the California weather service’s radar map as an 80-mile-wide...