Texas

Showing 6 posts tagged Texas

From Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls YouTube series: meet firefighter Xochitl Hernandez, one of 57 female firefighters in Austin Fire Department. Hernandez explains why she loves her job, and shares some of the amazing equipment that she uses with her brigade to help people in need.

There’s more to check out at AmySmartGirls.com, and watch more excellent firefighter videos in the archives.

Artist Soo Sunny Park's Unwoven Light, filmed by Walley Films.

Seeing a Styrofoam cup stuck on a fence one day got Park thinking about the chain link’s properties of being both rigid and porous, of acting as a boundary while retaining an appearance of openness… 

Explains Park, “Like a net, the sculpture is a filter that is meant to capture the light that is already there and force it to reveal itself. Now we can see it, the light, in purple shadows and yellow-green reflections that both mirror the shape of the fence and restructure the space they inhabit.”

Related watching from Rice University, a physicist’s perspective on Park’s shimmering, iridescent piece, featuring Jason Hafner, Associate Professor of Physics, Astronomy and Chemistry at Rice, and a time-lapse of the installation:

Related watching: iridescence and more art installations.

via It’s Nice That.

From @elonmusk, “What it feels like to ride a rocket.

SpaceX’s Grasshopper takes a 12-story leap towards full and rapid rocket reusability in a test flight conducted December 17, 2012 at SpaceX’s rocket development facility in McGregor, Texas. Grasshopper, a vertical takeoff and landing vehicle (VTVL), rose 131 feet (40 meters), hovered and landed safely on the pad using closed loop thrust vector and throttle control. The total test duration was 29 seconds. Grasshopper stands 10 stories tall and consists of a Falcon 9 rocket first stage, Merlin 1D engine, four steel landing legs with hydraulic dampers, and a steel support structure.

A baby nine-banded armadillo, introduced by the Texan who found him in the garden and then released him farther afield!

Nine-banded armadillos are generally insectivores. They forage for meals by thrusting their snouts into loose soil and leaf litter and frantically digging in erratic patterns, stopping occasionally to dig upgrubsbeetlesantstermites, and worms, which their sensitive noses can detect through 8 inches (20 cm) of soil. They then lap up the insects with their sticky tongues…

Unlike the South American three-banded armadillos, the nine-banded armadillo cannot roll itself into a ball. It is, however, capable of floating across rivers by inflating its intestines, or by sinking and running across riverbeds. The second is possible due to its ability to hold its breath for up to six minutes, an adaptation originally developed for allowing the animal to keep its snout submerged in soil for extended periods while foraging.

In.gredients is a new package-free grocery store that is opening in Austin, Texas in the Summer of 2012. Its mission as the US’s first zero-waste, package-free grocery store will support local businesses and farmers, will sell based on seasonal rhythms of farming, will avoid processed foods, will reduce transportation costs and pollution, and will encourage customers to bring their own reusable containers. Bringing back this way of shopping is a great idea for Austin and I could see it easily working in places like Brooklyn, Portland or the Bay Area, just to name a few other starter communities…

A great side effect to watching this video is starting a conversation about eating foods in season — more than just squash and pumpkins in the fall — as well as being very aware of how much packaging we use, recycle and throw away in our own home.

Related research: learn more about buying sustainable food with local guidesfind sustainable food near you at the Eat Well Guide, and check out this Seasonal Food Chart at Good.is. 

via It’s Okay to Be Smart.