Pulsar J1719-1438 is a very fast-spinning pulsar-what's called a millisecond pulsar. Amazingly, it rotates more than 10,000 times per minute, has a mass of about 1.4 times that of our Sun but is only 20 km in radius. About 70% of millisecond pulsars have companions of some kind: astronomers think it is the companion that, as a star, transforms an old, dead pulsar into a millisecond pulsar by transferring matter and spinning it up to a very high speed. The result is a fast-spinning millisecond pulsar with a shrunken companion-most often a white dwarf.
"We know of a few other systems, called ultra-compact low-mass X-ray binaries, that are likely to be evolving according to the scenario above and may likely represent the progenitors of a pulsar like J1719-1438" said Dr. Andrea Possenti, of INAF-Osservatorio Astronomico di Cagliari.
But pulsar J1719-1438 and its companion are so close together that the companion could only be a very stripped-down white dwarf, one that has lost its outer layers and over 99.9% of its original mass. This remnant is likely to be largely carbon and oxygen, stars of lighter elements like hydrogen and helium just won't fit. The density means that this material is certain to be crystalline: that is, a large part of the star may be similar to a diamond.
"The ultimate fate of the binary is determined by the mass and orbital period of the donor star at the time of mass transfer. The rarity of millisecond pulsars with planet-mass companions means that producing such 'exotic planets' is the exception rather than the rule, and requires special circumstances", said Dr. Benjamin Stappers from the University of Manchester.
"A portable tube with fresh pre-sliced sushi that is pushed up from bottom and eaten from top."
On Linux, set imageDirectory in your .xscreensaver file to an RSS or Atom feed, and run any of the image-grabbing hacks (Carousel, GLSlideshow, etc.) For debugging, run it manually from the shell with -vv.
On MacOS, replace that file inside the .saver bundle and do:
defaults -currentHost write org.jwz.xscreensaver.Carousel imageDirectory URL
This was inspired by an earlier hack used at SGI that was hooked up to the building's PA. When the build broke, a text-to-speech system would announce it to the world. "The build. Is broken. Terry. Broke the build."
Public shaming works even better than you might expect!
Retaliation is a Jenkins CI build monitor that automatically coordinates a foam missile counter-attack against the developer who breaks the build. It does this by playing a pre-programmed control sequence to a USB Foam Missile Launcher to target the offending code monkey. Check out the video to see Tom take one in the back of the head all because of a missing semicolon!
<vader>This build system is now fully operational.</vader>
1) The most dangerous obstacles are not at head level. Furniture and most of the other things that can be tripped over and stubbed on are waist level or lower.
2) Vibrating motors stuck on your skull will drive you insane quickly.
In addition it would be a challenge to disguise it as anything but some mad-science-looking headband, and blind people do care how they look.
The sign, a parody of a Seattle Department of Planning and Development land use sign, indicates that the empty lot will be used "to construct one ground level ball pit pond containing 1,200,000 cu. ft. of rainbow plastic balls."
"Parking for for 171 bicycles, 65 unicycles, and 13 tricycles to be provided in 2 levels within the structure," the sign reads. "Existing ramp to be converted to one 40 ft. slide."
A map on the sign shows a trampoline, a concessions area and a "rescue claw."
I believe that 1,200,000 cu. ft. of rainbow plastic balls would cost around $1.6 million, not including delivery.
And then several drinks in I said: "You know what we're doing this afternoon, John? We're fixing your stupid wobbly steampunk fucking coffee table."