Petra, a city cut out from rocks

Petra (Arabic: ٱلْبَتْرَاء‎, romanized: Al-Batrāʾ; Ancient Greek: Πέτρα, “Stone”), originally known to its inhabitants in Nabataean Aramaic as ̢𐢚𐢛𐢓𐢈 rqmwRaqēmō,[3][4] is a historical and archaeological city in southern Jordan. Petra lies around Jabal Al-Madbah in a basin surrounded by mountains which form the eastern flank of the Arabah valley that runs from the Dead Seato the Gulf of Aqaba.[5] The area around Petra has been inhabited from as early as 7000 BC. We set the cameraContinue reading “Petra, a city cut out from rocks”

Comet Neowise at Night

Can you believe we didn’t even know this comet existed until less than 4 months ago? And now we won’t see it again for 6700 years! C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) or Comet NEOWISE is a retrograde comet with a near-parabolic orbit discovered on March 27, 2020, by astronomers during the NEOWISE mission of the Wide-field InfraredContinue reading “Comet Neowise at Night”

Neighborhood Walk during Sheltering in Place

Everyone in California right now is sheltering in place. We have been asked to minimize travel, work from home and not leave home unless absolutely necessary. No driving to places for an evening walk etc. What’s allowed is to go downstairs for a quick walk in the neighborhood. Luckily, we live close to this spotContinue reading “Neighborhood Walk during Sheltering in Place”

The Russian Woodpecker in Chernobyl

I was recently in Ukraine and I decided to visit Chernobyl. I did not know anything about this giant antenna system, the “Russian Woodpecker” until I got here. And it’s incredible. In 1976 the world heard for the first time the eerie woodpecker-like repetitive pulse coming from these transmitters in present day Ukraine. Conspiracy theoriesContinue reading “The Russian Woodpecker in Chernobyl”

Poznań at Sunset

Labels are very tricky to navigate, especially through the lens of history. Poznań is the chief city in the historical region called Wielkopolska (Greater Poland) which used to be at the heart of the 10th century Polish state. After more than a century of partitions between the Austrian, the Prussian, and the Russian imperial powers,Continue reading “Poznań at Sunset”

FaceId on iPhone X tested in mountaineering gear

I was blown away by something unexpected this weekend. I looked like this but the FaceId on My iPhone X recognized me each time I looked at it! I didn’t really expect it to detect my features but it kinda makes sense as the glasses block UV and visible light but FaceId uses IR light.Continue reading “FaceId on iPhone X tested in mountaineering gear”

A peek view of the Bandra Worli Sea Link

The Bandra-Worli Sea Link is a cable-stayed bridge with pre-stressed concrete-steel viaducts on either side that links Bandra in the Western Suburbs of Mumbai with Worli in South Mumbai. It has a total length of 5.6 km (3.5 miles). In this pic you see the largest pylon towers which are 128 m (420 ft) high.Continue reading “A peek view of the Bandra Worli Sea Link”

Breakfast in India at a highway stop

1. Gaathiya (yellow fried dough things) 2. Jalebi (orange/yellow sugary syrupy thingy) 3. Mircha (fried hot peppers with salt) 4. Cha (hot tea) With two sides: A) raw onions B) pickled carrots The flavors work so well together, at many different levels, despite the simplicity. The hotness of the peppers is accentuated by the heatContinue reading “Breakfast in India at a highway stop”

Kīlauea: spending the night next to a lava flow!

🌋 Kīlauea is a currently active shield volcano in the Hawaiian Islands, and the most active of the five volcanoes that together form the island of Hawaiʻi, also called the Big Island. Located along the southern shore, the volcano is between 300,000 and 600,000 years old and emerged above sea level about 100,000 years ago.Continue reading “Kīlauea: spending the night next to a lava flow!”