Japanese scientists say giant plumes will prevent new Pangaea

first_img Explore further (PhysOrg.com) — For much of Earth’s history, the continents have shifted around, sometimes joining with others, sometimes tearing apart to form new continents. One such shift resulted in what Earth scientists call the Pangaea, or supercontinent, where nearly all of the land mass of Earth was consolidated into one single continent. Many Earth Scientists have predicted that such an event is likely to occur again over the next 250 million years or so. Yoshida and Madhava Santosh of Kochi University, Japan, disagree, if only slightly. They contend in their paper published in Terra Nova, that giant plumes far beneath the surface of the Earth will prevent South America and Antarctica from joining each other or the new continent. The plumes, or hot areas in the mantle some 2800 kilometers below the surface of the Earth, lying roughly between Africa and the South Pacific, are hot enough, the two researchers say, to prevent land masses settling over them. If they are right, the movement that is now going on, where Africa and Europe are moving towards one another, as are parts of Asia and Australia, would not result in the Pacific ocean being closed off as previous research has suggested. Instead, they say the Pacific Ocean will remain open with South America and Antarctica separate from the rest of the new super continent.While the origin of the plumes is really not very well understood (some suggest they are remnants of the primordial mantle) the heat they produce emanates up to the surface, raising its level in some cases as much as a kilometer or two. That is enough, most agree, to affect how plates move around relative to them. Until now, however, no one has thought to include the influence of these hot spots in models that seek to show how the continents will drift.Scientists are able to see how the continents have drifted in the past by studying the magnetic fields in old rock formations. They use this information, combined with the measurable movement of the continents today to come up with models that forecast what will happen in the distant future.For those that might wonder why such forecasts matter, it’s because it adds to the overall knowledge base that describes our one and only habitable planet. The more we as a people learn about how it works, the better able we will be not just survive on it, but to prosper as the uncertain future unfolds. © 2011 PhysOrg.com Temporal evolution of deformable continents. Image credit: DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3121.2011.01018.x More information: Future supercontinent assembled in the northern hemisphere, Terra Nova, 23, 333–338, 2011. Article first published online: 17 AUG 2011 DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3121.2011.01018.xAbstractContinental masses were amalgamated, broken apart and reassembled within supercontinents during different times in Earth history. Here, we attempt to predict the configuration of a potential future supercontinent based on a numerical simulation model of mantle convection. The mantle convection in our model is driven by a density anomaly compiled from a global seismic tomography model. The temporal evolution of a highly viscous continent with an initial present-day configuration is simulated for over 250 Ma. The result reveals that Australia, Eurasia, North America and Africa would gather in the northern hemisphere to form the future supercontinent. On the other hand, Antarctica and South America remain in the present-day position even after 250 Ma from present, and do not join the future supercontinent amalgam. The configuration of the future supercontinent numerically simulated herein is broadly consistent with the hypothetical model of the future supercontinent Amasia speculated from geological correlations. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Japanese scientists say giant plumes will prevent new Pangaea (2011, September 20) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-09-japanese-scientists-giant-plumes-pangaea.html The continents as a heat blanketlast_img read more

Google tries new approach with real time traffic estimates for Google Maps

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Microsoft says Google is bypassing its cookie stopping technology too Explore further (PhysOrg.com) — It used to be when using Google Maps to plan your route, i.e. driving from one destination to another, Google Maps would also try to give you an estimate for how long it would really take you to make that trip using historical data trends it had built up over time. The problem was, real world travel times often varied greatly from the historical data, leaving drivers frustrated with the results. Because of that, Google finally pulled the plug on the feature altogether last summer. Now, it appears Google is ready to try again, though this time it’s taking a much different approach, using data generated in real time via third party reports and data it obtains via drivers who have phones running Android and who also choose to opt in to Google’s “My Location” feature by enabling it voluntarily on their phones. More information: Google’s blog: google-latlong.blogspot.com/20 … ration-based-on.htmlcenter_img © 2012 PhysOrg.com One of the nice features of Maps’ new real-time traffic monitoring is that users don’t have to go looking for it, the numbers show up automatically. Thus to use it, all a user does is click on the same links they always have, type in both departure and arrival destinations and Google will give both the average driving time in ideal conditions (in good weather with no other cars on the road) and what it believes to be the driving time based on current conditions. Obviously, there are some caveats. One is that in order for the whole thing to work, drivers must live in an area that Google has included, namely a major city. The other is that an awful lot of Android users must choose to opt in.For Google to make this announcement now, they must be confident that enough users are now already choosing to enable the “My Location” option. As for living in one of the cities that Google has included, it appears most of the larger ones in the United States are currently included as are several in Europe, most notably Great Britain. Google says it’s adding more as time passes, which carries a lot of weight coming from the company that has spent a veritable fortune building up images around the world for no better reason than to post them to its Street View feature.Because it’s based on real live user data, it’s likely Google’s new driving time estimates will be more accurate than in the past, and for the same reason, it’s likely those estimates will get better over time as more data points become available from Android users, which should hopefully outweigh any objections some might have over Google even having “My Location” as a feature on their phone which allows Google to not only collect GPS data on users, but to save that data and use it for other purposes. Citation: Google tries new approach with real time traffic estimates for Google Maps (2012, April 2) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-04-google-approach-real-traffic.htmllast_img read more

Robot guards being tested in South Korea

first_img The robot, called Robo-Guard by many in the press, is equipped with several cameras, one of which is 3D, microphone, speaker and circuitry and software that allow it to roam autonomously in predefined areas within the prison. It also has software that allows it to analyze behavioral characteristics of inmates to help in deciding whether to alert the human guards. Its main purpose, according to the AFC, is to reduce manpower costs in prisons and to make a safer environment for both inmates and those that guard them.It also appears that the South Korean government, which has paid for the development of the robots, is using its prison population as a test ground for bolstering its robotics technology in general. After all, most, if not all of what these new robots do could just as easily be done by installing cameras in every hall and cell and connecting them to a computer that does the processing. But, because the testing is done in an environment where test subjects don’t have the option of objecting, research can be carried out that would not be possible in any other environment. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. In addition to patrolling the halls, the robots are also able to serve as wireless two-way communications devices, allowing inmates and guards to communicate without the guard having to leave the command center. The human guards can also manually control the actions of the robots using an iPad application. The current test trial, which employs the use of three robots, is set to run for just one month and to cost a little over three quarters of a million dollars; at the end of which, researchers and politicians presumably will determine if the idea is feasible and whether the program ought to become permanent. If it does, the AFC has said they’d like to get the robots to one day perform body searches, though it’s not likely they would be capable of searching body cavities, instead they would perhaps be able to frisk inmates randomly, which likely would reduce the number of homemade weapons inmates use to harm one another or their guards. (Phys.org) — South Korea, a nation with a self-proclaimed goal of being a leader in robotics technology has, through the Asian Forum of Corrections (AFC), begun testing the feasibility of using robots as prison guards in an actual prison in Pohang. The robots’ duties, at least initially, are to patrol the halls between cells looking for signs of trouble, and if it finds it, alert the human guards who will take appropriate action.center_img © 2012 Phys.Org Robot guards to patrol South Korean prisons Citation: Robot guards being tested in South Korea (2012, April 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-04-robot-south-korea.htmllast_img read more

Chip foundry has trouble meeting 28nm demand

first_img © 2012 Phys.Org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. TSMC reports shrinking profit, revenue in 3Q TSMC is the world’s largest contract chip maker, producing SoCs for chip vendor Qualcomm, Nvidia, and others. TSMC is also regarded as the world’s largest foundry and technological leader in 28nm chip production, but its 28nm yields are not high enough to satisfy demand.“Demand of 28-nanometer has surpassed our customers and our expectations, resulting in supply shortage. I think the worst of the supply shortage is behind us. We expect that we will be close to catching up in the fourth quarter this year. And we expect to have completely caught up with demand by the first quarter next year. And we will not fall behind again,” Morris Chang, CEO, told investors in April during a conference call.Chang blamed the shortage on the fact that demand of 28-nanometer surpassed both his customers and the company’s own expectations. “This supply shortage problem is not caused by new problems but by underestimates by both our customers and us, of the capacity and ramp-up speed required this year.”Qualcomm, a TSMC customer. must not only seek understanding but solutions for its business. (Qualcomm designs chips and blueprints are handed over to TSMC.) In March there was talk of how Qualcomm, unhappy about TSMC’s supply issues, was moving some of its business to GlobalFoundries and UMC. Qualcomm had warned in April that it will have trouble meeting demand for some of its advance cellphone chips for the rest of the year due to manufacturing constraints. However, earlier this month, Qualcomm said it expects advanced 28-nanometer chip supply to be under control towards the year-end. The Reuters report said that now Qualcomm was working with not only TSMC, but also “other foundries” to increase supply of the chips. Likewise, there are stories that other customers may be shopping around for competing foundries to address demand.Samsung has moved to get around the problem by investing in its own chip manufacturing line for mobile processors planned for completion by the end of next year. The company will spend $1.9 billion to build the plant to meet demand for chips powering mobile devices, according to Samsung. This is Samsung’s way of keeping control over the supply chain. Explore further Citation: Chip foundry has trouble meeting 28nm demand (2012, June 16) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-06-chip-foundry-28nm-demand.html (Phys.org) — The next big things in mobile devices are being hammered by the next big headache for device makers—the chips at the foundation of their supply chain. High demand for devices is trickling down to the fact that chip factories cannot keep up with demand. Especially rattling nerves has been news that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) continues to report 28nm chip supply issues, which are expected to continue until the end of the year. Speaking at the annual general meeting, the TSMC chief said chip supplies will not be able to satisfy market demand until 2013. last_img read more

Ship will make its own waves for rig safety w Video

first_img“This concept provides an alternative to the semi-submersible platforms commonly used at present,” said Sverre Anders Alterskjær, a research scientist at the Norwegian Marine Technology Research Institute (MARINTEK). “The aim is to create a more mobile hotel unit which can be leased by oil companies which operate in several parts of the world. Our job has been to give the ship characteristics which make it more comfortable to live on at sea,” said Alterskjær, a research scientist. MARINTEK is a Norway-based marine simulation facility, which tested models of the new ship.The project, according to the SINTEF report, has a number of players; the ship was designed by a maritime design company SALT, under contract for Østensjø. Johannes Eldøy, a marine designer at SALT, said, “The most important thing has been to improve the efficiency and safety of the connection between the offshore installation and the gangway, which is as much as 55 meters long. This is a critical point because the vessel must display the least possible vertical motion in response to the waves while at the same time maintaining its position.”According to SINTEF, the integrated system designed to reduce rolling of the vessel was developed by Hoppe Marine and tested by Alterskjær and his research colleagues at MARINTEK. The ship is being constructed by Hyundai Heavy Industries in South Korea under contract for Østensjø. The ship is expected to be ready in 2015. © 2013 Phys.org Citation: Ship will make its own waves for rig safety (w/ Video) (2013, September 26) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-09-ship-rig-safety-video.html More information: www.sintef.no/home/MARINTEK/Ne … hat-waves-wont-rock/ New asymmetric ice-breaker ship to clear larger path by moving at an angle The water is to be set in motion in opposing phase to the wave forces acting on the hull. According to the design, valve openings can be adjusted depending on the ship’s roll period; the motion of the water in the tanks is calibrated to match the strength of the waves on the sea. The ship will be equipped with azimuth thrusters (one definition of azimuth thrusters is an arrangement of propellers placed in pods that can rotate in any horizontal direction). According to a report on the project from SINTEF, the largest independent research organization in Scandinavia, the ship is equipped with six azimuth thrusters – “propeller drives with directional control used to keep the ship in the same position when in hotel mode.”The ship is 500 feet long; 800 workers can be accommodated with housing, gym, sauna, two pools, and office space. (Phys.org) —A so-called “hotel” ship to accommodate offshore oil rig workers is under construction, which will be engineered in a way to maintain its stability even over rough seas. The new Norwegian ship will make its own waves with internal water tanks. The effort is not only purposed for the comfort of the workers servicing the platforms but for safety. The design will support safe movement from the ship to the platform and precision work while over rough seas. How will this ship make its own waves? The answer is U-shaped water tanks integrated into the ship’s hull. The tanks will generate waves in such a way that can stabilize the vessel. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore furtherlast_img read more

Groovy in the city metal style

first_imgThey started like any other band in the country. Getting together, jamming, singing in college fests and then covers in venues across the Capital. Catch Silent Existence as they dream bigger and get in the process of cutting an album. Here are excerpts:Where does the name of your band come from?The name comes from within. Well, we are all just silently existing, aren’t we?”Tell us about how you guys started off…Just started off in college just like any other band here in India, covering music from international artists like Korn, Limp Bizkit, RATM, Deftones, Linkin Park etc. and then over the years stopped playing covers and made our kind of music which is a blend of new metal and groove metal. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’What is your original brand of music? Do you guys have a signature sound?Originally, we’re a Nu metal band. Groovy new metal would be our signature sound.Tell us about the initial years after kick-off till how it has been thus farInitially it was just covering songs and playing at college festivals, but now all we are interested is in playing good proper shows..since college festivals are organized by students who don’t give much importance to bands new/old…and are not capable of hosting good college festivals..been there done that..not anymore…all we are concentrating now is on playing good shows with good venues, sound and above all good people who understand, critic, reciprocate, appreciate music. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixWhat are you expecting out of Metal Battle I?A big shout out to the guys from Backflip, Anika Mehta specially to be giving a heads-up to Delhiites about heavy metal and sub genres of music and keeping the scene alive. This show is going to be really special since We would be joined by our ex –guitarist and founding member (chino) on guitars and we would also have Manish Kestwal (Nigambodh) on guest vocals…we don’t do much of planning really..we just do what we do best and that is play with a lot of energy.”What plans for 2013?Launch the album which has been a long time coming and write new stuff and get the new stuff on a tape ASAP.last_img read more

Rare contemporary art from Myanmar showcased in India

first_imgA rare group exhibition by five emerging artists, From Myanmar with Love, at the All India Fine Arts and Crafts Society (AIFACS) brought to the capital glimpses of new art practices and contemporary realities in modern Myanmar, coping with change. The participating artists include five leading names, Aung Myint, K Kyaw, Maung Aw, Than Kyaw Htay and Zaw Win Pe, who had exhibited solo at the Alliance Francaise in the capital in 2012.  Presented by the Calcutta Arts Club, a South Asian arts promotion platform, the exhibition is trying to raise awareness about contemporary art from Myanmar and build a buyers’ base in India, a growing market for art. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The fledgling democracy in Myanmar, which was ruled by a military junta for more than five decades, is yet to find an artistic idiom that showcases its socio-cultural character in all its diversity despite the variety of mediums the tribe of young artists is experimenting with, critics say.Technically, the new Myanmarese art is being described as superior to that of its smaller neighbours in Southeast Asia, critics say.Contemporary art from Myanmar, though not yet popular in India, is sought after in the Asian art capitals of Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai and across Europe and the US. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix‘The artists who are exhibiting their works were recommended to me by galleries and collectors from Singapore and Europe. This exhibition will travel to at least six cities in India through the year,’ Calcutta Arts Club co-owner Abhishek Basu told.Last year, the Club had carried a showcase from Myanmar to five cities in Europe and this summer, the travelling exhibition is likely to go to London.‘Bookings for the works started even before the show was unveiled in the capital. I had posted an e-catalogue on the Internet,’ the promoter said. At a preview, Basu sold two of the paintings to local buyers, who elicited curiosity about contemporary art from Myanmar. The prices range from Rs 85,000 to Rs 6,40,000, Basu said, adding the artworks would be replenished as the show travels around the country.Myanmar has two major fine arts schools – the State School of Fine Arts in Yangon and in Mandalay under the National University of Arts and Culture.‘Younger artists experiment with mediums and practise at the art schools,’ Basu said. Most of the art traditions are still indigenous in nature outside the cities with Buddhist influences.last_img read more

You need to know when to unplug

first_imgHi, I live alone in Delhi. I work in a BPO and my long hours ensure that my house is in complete mess! I hate the look of it now. What to do?Pratap, New DelhiIf you don’t put regular work into organising and maintaining cleanliness in your home, you can expect disaster. First things first, pick a few hours a week to dedicate to cleaning up your home. Hire help if you need it and can afford it, or find a way to actually enjoy the cleaning time, like watching TV or listening to music. Some people are naturally blessed with the ability to organize and stay organized but if you are not one of them, ensure you are a good manager who will be able to manage the domestic helps to put things in order. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’My husband works in IT firm. He’s completely addicted to technology! He is obsessed these days. It’s affecting our lives badly. What should be done?Ruby, NoidaTechnology can have a large presence in our lives without causing problems, but we need to know when to unplug. We definitely want to unplug before bed, as keeping technology in the bedroom tends to make us use it and glowing screens in the dark will help us sleep better. It will also serve as an early morning distraction and potentially make us late to work. One of the major problems technology addiction has caused is a lack of awareness. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixI can’t sleep for more than 4 hours each day. I wake up and sometimes feel tired all day long! I’m 17 and feel bad about this!Niharika, PunjabSleep is really important. It may actually be more important than food. It may even help you lose weight. If you’re not sleeping well, there are so many things you can try to fix the problem. First of all, stop reading your backlit screens before going to bed! In fact, just keep technology out of the bedroom all together. You also should limit your caffeine and other stimulants. Eating heavier in the morning and less at night can aid in better sleep. You have to experiment a little to find what works, but when you take care of yourself physically, in general, you’ll likely find that sleeping works just the way it should.I am working for last 6 years. I haven’t been able to save any money. I always am broke! How can I improve my life?Tejas, HaryanaIn reality, most of us feel broke all the time. Salaries, income never feel enough! But you surely can try earning through other sources. The web offers plenty of ways to make some extra cash. If more work isn’t quite what you were hoping for, just make the most of being poor (or poor-ish). Live smaller, do what it takes to be happy in the limits. If over-spending is a problem, you need to immediately STOP. Get rid of credit cards. Don’t worry, most of us are on the same boat brother! Have a love or life query you cannot find an answer to? Send your questions to – roopshashotm@gmail.comlast_img read more

Its fight club on Capital stage

first_imgThe Films and Theatre Society  is on with their play, Arjun Ka Beta. The 80-minute play is written and directed by Atul Satya Koushik. It is an attempt to present the chapter of Chakravyuh from the great epic of Mahabharata in a new manner where hidden meanings, interpretation and learning from the philosophy of the Chakravyuh take the front seat, yet keeping all the action, glory, bravado and valor related to the incident equally important. Krishna as the protagonist in the play begins by establishing the importance keeping the learning from the mythology in our minds even though we forget the incidents of events that actually happened in them. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’There are reasons you wouldn’t want to miss this! Top-class poetry rich in words, content and meaning awaits you. It’ll have answers to questions which belong to all ages and humans in a very dramatic manner and credible performance by experienced actors is definitely happening. A fierce war scene choreographed in Thangta, an Indian martial art form, you surely don’t want to miss this. The period costumes and spectacular light and sound effects to leave you mesmerised. Oh and, have you heard live war songs? Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix Films and Theatre Society is five years old. The main objective of the society is the production and promotion of theatrical plays, short (and other) films and other performing arts such as dance and music in India, with a special focus and concentration on Indian arts. Other objectives of the society inter-alia include furtherance of literature, creative arts related to theatre and films and other art forms, and making available to its members resources connected.  Another peculiar feature about the society is that in spite of being a weekend arts group it has been able to come up with productions which match up to the standards of any other professional group working in related field. This is the reason various companies, corporate houses and other institutional bodies have shown interest and extended their support to the activities and production of the society.When: 8 June at 7pmWhere: Kamani Auditorium, Tickets: Book at Bookmyshow for Rs 500, 300 200 and 100last_img read more

Bridging culture and trade

first_imgThis time the fair will be highlighting on providing infrastructure, facilities and environment conducive for business with the wide and varied product range.  The five-day fair will feature cultural performances, musical shows and photo shoots. Folk dance by Rajasthani and Manipuri troupes, playing of instrumental music on nagaras from drum players of Rajasthan and Haryana, flute, recitation, jaltarang, tabala, saxophone and violin etc. has been organised for each day of the fair. The costumes used in India for Kathkali performance, Manipuri performance are worldwide known for their colourful design and make up. These have been source of attraction all over and also promote the artistic workmanship of the Indian artisans. The varied cultural aspects of India being made available at the platform of IHGF Delhi Fair will create a source of relief and relaxation for the visitors besides being an attraction to be there.A large number of overseas buyers from several countries of world are expected to attend the fair and source their requirement during five-days performances. More than 2000 product range will be on display at the fair.last_img read more

Priya Cinema fire Fire possibly originated from control room says Sovan Chatterjee

first_imgKolkata: State Fire minister Sovan Chatterjee said on Monday that the fire that broke out in Priya Cinema Hall had probably originated from the control room located in the ground floor just beside the staircase leading to the main hall where shows are held.”I was present there with the fire fighting team and as per prima facie evidence, the fire had started in one of the rooms ‘that looked like a control room’. There were several wires dangling in the room. Our investigation is on while a forensic team has carried out a thorough inspection. We need to wait for the results in order to come to any definite conclusion,” Chatterjee said. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe hall has been barred from running any further shows till the investigation is completed.”We will take necessary action if we find any lapse in fire safety procedures,” the minister reiterated. He added that inspection drives will be conducted in the old movie theatres in the city, to ensure that fire safety standards are adhered to.A forensic team that visited the spot on Monday, however, differed in their primary opinion about the cause of fire and attributed it to a momo stall of a leading brand just beside the ticket counter at the hall. “We have collected samples from the spot and will carry out a detailed analysis to ascertain the cause of fire. However, as per primary evidences that we gathered, it seems that it originated from the mono stall,” a forensic team member said.A fire had broken out on Sunday night at the movie theatre near Deshapriya Park, while it was running its night show. Heavy smoke quickly covered all the floors of the building, forcing people to rush out of the theatre in panic. The owner of the theatre Arijit Dutta, who resides along with his family on the floors above the hall, had quickly escaped to the roof. His office is also located on the top floor above the hall.last_img read more

BJP delegation meets state govt officials over Rath Yatra date

first_imgKolkata: The date of the BJP Rath Yatra is yet to be finalised as the state government has not taken a decision in this regard. BJP has urged the state government to inform them three days prior to the finalised date. On Thursday, a BJP delegation comprising party leaders Dilip Ghosh, Mukul Roy and Kailash Vijayvargiya met top officials of the state administration at Lalbazar, following the order of Calcutta High Court. Chief Secretary Malay De, Home Secretary Atri Bhattacharya and Director General of Police Virendra were present at the meeting on behalf of the state government. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe Rath Yatra was scheduled to start on December 7 from Cooch Behar but could not as the state government did not grant permission as it feared that it might cause communal tension. It was slated to be the first of three such rallies by BJP before the Lok Sabha polls next year. A Calcutta High Court division Bench of justices Biswanath Somadder and A Mukherjee had disposed of an appeal by BJP against a single Bench order on December 6 that refused permission for its Rath Yatra and directed the state to hold the meeting by Wednesday.last_img read more

Abhishek fires salvo at BJP warns them against creating disturbance

first_imgPurulia: All India Trinamool Youth Congress president and party MP Abhishek Banerjee warned BJP not to create further disturbance in the district and instructed party workers to gherao the houses of local BJP leaders if any of their party colleagues get killed.He was addressing a mammoth rally at Moutai Football ground in Raghunathpur Block II here on Thursday afternoon. “If our party colleagues get killed then gherao the houses of the BJP leaders and I will come from Kolkata to lead the movement,” he said. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeHe said after winning some seats in the three-tier Panchayat election in Purulia, BJP leaders including its national president Amit Shah have said that Trinamool Congress is losing ground in the district. “They live in a fool’s paradise. Eight of the BJP candidates who had won in the election have joined Trinamool Congress and seven more will join soon,” he said. He maintained that BJP is trying to create disturbance in the area by inciting one community against the other. “This will not work in Purulia and people will defeat BJP democratically,” Banerjee said. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedDrawing a comparison between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Mamata Banerjee, he said Modi speaks lies and lies only. “Before the 2014 Lok Sabha election, he had said that ‘acche din’ will come to India and every Indian will get Rs 15 lakh in their bank account. Have you got a single paisa in your bank account? This is a blatant lie,” Banerjee added. On the other hand, before coming to power in 2011, Mamata Banerjee had said that peace will be restored in Jangalmahal and she actually did it. “People could not come to Purulia, Bankura, West Midnapore and Jhargram because of the Maoists. She visited Jangalmahal several times, won the confidence of people and carried out comprehensive development work in the area,” he said, adding that a multi-crore water supply project has been taken up to supply piped water to the drought-prone areas and once the project is completed, water scarcity in some pockets of the district will be a matter of the past. He urged the people to attend the Brigade Rally scheduled to be held on January 19, 2019, in great numbers. “Leaders from all political parties will come to strengthen the hand of Mamata Banerjee and oust BJP from the Centre. The recent results in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh have sounded the beginning of BJP’s end,” Banerjee said. Trinamool Congress will hold a rally from Park Circus Maidan to Howrah on January 10, to garner support for the mega Brigade rally scheduled on January 19. Two other rallies will also be held from Joka to Thakurpukur 3A bus stand and from Mahabirtala to Karunamoyee. “The dates for these two rallies will be finalised later,” said Trinamool Congress secretary general Partha Chatterjee.last_img read more

Cops nab accused in Tala Park murder case

first_imgKolkata: Tala police station has nabbed a person identified as Md Kalam for allegedly murdering his friend Shaikh Abdul Abbas late on December 24 night.While probing the case, the sleuths recovered some empty alcohol bottles from the spot along with a brick with blood stains on it. During a preliminary interrogation, the sleuths noticed some of Abbas’s friends behaving suspiciously. Later, police detained a few of them. While interrogating them, several contradictions were found in Kalam’s version. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeDuring rigorous interrogation by the police, Kalam admitted to have killed Abbas but he did not have any personal grudge against him. Sources informed Kalam got involved in an altercation with Abbas over distribution of money. Though Kalam’s family claimed Abbas had made a foul comment on Kalam’s sister but nothing could be confirmed till Wednesday night. On Tuesday morning, locals saw Abbas’s body lying inside a drain near Tala Park.Later, police recovered the brick with blood stains and empty alcohol bottles. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe autopsy surgeon said the nature of death is homicidal. Meanwhile, from a local source, the sleuths came to know that on Monday night Abbas had alcohol with some of his friends near the place where his body was found. It was also alleged that he had won a gamble between him and his friends and a conflict had occurred a few days ago. Based on the information Abbas’s friends were interrogated and the sleuths were able to nab the culprit.last_img read more

State govt plans comprehensive steps to facilitate mapping of tourism sector

first_imgKolkata: For the first time since Independence, the state Tourism department is coming up with a comprehensive mapping of the tourism sector in Bengal which is a land of diverse natural splendour ranging from the Himalayas to the greenery of Gangetic planes, from serene beaches to mangrove estuaries.”We are trying to have a more systematic approach towards tourism. The comprehensive mapping of the sector involves a survey of the tourism industry and trade. We have already tendered for it and we are hopeful of getting the results before Durga Puja,” said Principal Secretary, Tourism, Atri Bhattacharya at a conference on Urban Infrastructure organised by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) on Saturday. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseBhattacharya said the government is also going for publicity and promotion of the tourism sector and have tendered for a continuous round-the-clock public relations (PR) activation company with requisite skills in this area. He also spoke about the newly launched app called “Hurray” on the basis of which the department will rate tour and hotel operators across the state to facilitate domestic and international tourists when they plan to explore Bengal. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata”The tour operators, the hotel or restaurant operators, guides and transport operators are asked to register themselves with this app. When a customer pays the bill, there will be a five-category rating on which he/she will be giving the feedback. The rating will be uploaded through the app and when we get a volume of such reviews, the properties or hotels with good reviews will be linked to our website. This will help tourists to have an idea of the good properties and hotels and accordingly plan their tour,” Bhattacharya said. The Tourism department is also pushing for cycle tracks around Maidan and will also explore the possibility of such facilities in the narrow alleys of North Kolkata where vehicles cannot reach. “We will be soon holding talks with the Army, the Kolkata Municipal Corporation and Kolkata Police in this regard,” Bhattacharya said. New Town already has separate cycle tracks or lanes demarcated in many areas, particularly in Action Area-I.last_img read more

Gujarat serving Dessert in Desert for tourists

first_imgWith enriched history and geographical features, Gujarat is top most among the fastest growing state. Places which will give you enthralling moments to cherish and will own you in its own colour; Gujarat is poised to have a fantastic tourism infrastructure for both inbound and domestic tourist. To discuss more about the state, MD of Gujarat tourism Jenu Devan had an exclusive conversation with Srooti Jha where he mentioned about some upcoming projects and surprises, which await tourists. Read on: Also Read – Add new books to your shelfTell us about the plans and initiatives taken by Gujarat tourism for the upliftment of tribal region in southern Gujarat? Out of the total population of the state, 22% are tribals residing in the southern region of Gujarat. To promote this tribal region, we have already started an initiative where we are offering unexplored tribal cuisine and handicrafts to the tourists. Secondly, we are trying to improve the employment, living standards and the income levels of the tribals. We are focusing specifically on Gujrat’s tribal population and the area which has good tourism potential like Saputara in Dang District, which has 100% tribal population and places like Mahal forest, Vansda National park, Gir and other sanctuaries and National parks, where these tribal people are residing. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveWe have come up with a home-stay policy also, in which we are giving incentives to the tribal people for remodelling and to meet the basic criteria for making their place available for the tourists. If they meet the criteria, we upgrade them in silver and gold category. We give them certificates for home-stay and add them to our approved list of our sites, where these stays can be booked easily. What is the vision of Gujarat tourism and the infrastructural development plan for the next five years? Along with attracting more investment to the tourism sector, the main vision of Gujarat tourism is to give a pleasant and comfortable stay for the tourists. Moreover, to benefit both tourists and locals, Gujarat tourism is trying to engage youth for employment and helping tribal and rural people. Infrastructure development of Gujarat is very good and we are investing 200-250 crores for infrastructure development in every budget. In nearby future, we will be focusing on prime areas like Buddhist circuits, where reminisce of Lord Buddha was found in a place called Devni Mori. A big Buddhist complex is in course of completion, where a big statue, Viharas, will be showcasing Buddhist culture and tradition at international level for other countries to participate. Similarly, a circuit is being built in which 13 Buddhist caves have been identified in Saurashtra. Apart from that, we also have Indus valley sites, Dholavira, and Lothal.In Lothal, we are coming up with National Maritime Heritage Museum. Indus valley civilization is being promoted in a very big way, and a University is coming with the collaboration of Ministry of Shipping.Under our Border Tourism initiative, we are taking people to the Pakistan border, giving them the opportunity to see zero line, life of BSF Jawans, and retreat ceremony. Many upgradations have also been made in terms of basic amenities which will help attract tourist in many ways…so lots of investments are going on. Gujarat tourism department is also taking feedbacks from the tourist and travel agencies to know what exactly tourist from India and abroad are looking for. These feedbacks are taken categorically so that every age, belief and race preference can be specified.last_img read more

Mamata interacts with tea garden workers

first_imgKolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday spoke directly with some workers of a tea garden at Rohini, while coming down from Kurseong to Siliguri. Banerjee was returning after addressing a public meeting at Kurseong in the afternoon.She enquired whether the workers are properly getting their daily wage of Rs 176 per day and whether they are getting food grains from the ration shops. She further asked them whether their children are going to school or not. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataShe was informed that the school in the area houses students upto the eighth standard and children have to travel a reasonably long distance to Kurseong, for studying in Class X or beyond. Banerjee told them that she would look into the issue. “Interacted with the workers of a tea garden at Rohini today. Despite non-cooperation from the Centre, our government in #Bangla has been working for the welfare of tea garden workers since 2011. It was a pleasant experience talking to these women workers. Women are the backbone of the society. My best wishes to all,” Banerjee wrote on her Facebook page, sharing a small video of her interaction. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateIt may be mentioned that all working and non-working families residing in the tea gardens (enrolled under Antyodaya Anna Yojana), are getting 35 kg food grains per month at only 47 paise per kg. The more needy beneficiaries are getting foodgrains completely free of cost. She also shared a video of her fondling a baby during her journey to Siliguri. Banerjee also asked the baby’s mother its name and came to know that his name was Jeevam. Sharing her experience, the Chief Minister wrote on her Facebook page: “Came across this beautiful bundle of joy, Jeevam. Children are the future of the society. I wish him a bright future. We have several schemes for the welfare of people, for every stage of life. I hope Jeevam will also benefit from them.”last_img read more

A tale of courage

first_imgDarjeeling: Gopal Shreshta is a man with a mission. Out to spread awareness against stigma surrounding HIV, Shreshta became the first HIV positive person to summit Mount Everest. Though a success story, his life has been full of challenges, akin to his summit quest.Shreshta, who hails from Ratnachowk, Pokhara, Nepal is at present visiting Darjeeling, to recoup and celebrate his successful Everest assent. Talking to Millennium Post, Shreshta, who was formerly a national football player of Nepal, said: “I wanted to send the message to society that HIV positives are in no way weak, mentally or physically. We too can do it. It was also to send a message to the government of Nepal to give opportunities to the HIV infected.” Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataShreshta was turned down by Nepal Parvat Arohan Sangh (mountaineering institute), when he had applied for the mountaineering course in 2013 and 2014. “They said the course is for the Sherpas. I feel it could be because of the HIV as it could have created complications for them as I had come out in the open that I was HIV infected,” stated Shreshta. However, this did not deter him. He self-trained and in 2013 October, did a solo trek of the Thorungla Pass (5416 m). In October 2014, he successfully scaled Island peak (6189 m) in Nepal. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateIn 2015, he made an Everest attempt but was trapped in the mega avalanche. He was rescued and survived, when 5 of his friends lost their lives. It took him time to recover from this tragedy. However, he was back climbing next year and in February, he successfully summited the Khang Karpo (6704 m) peak in Nepal. He was then ready for his second attempt at scaling Mount Everest. “As the government did not support me much, I had to start a fundraiser. My friends, family and NGOs helped. This year I was back at Everest once again,” said Shreshta, who finally scaled the world’s highest peak on May 22 at 8:00 am. “While acclimatising on my way back from camp 3 to camp 2, I fell and had a knee injury. I was advised to return. Sheer determination kept me going. I returned to base camp and rested for 9 days and started again,” he added. The summit was also difficult with the traffic jam. “My oxygen regulator was malfunctioning as the elastic of my goggles had gone loose. There was constant vapour on the goggles because of this and I had difficulty seeing. I had to open my goggles a number of times to see and then I started getting snow blind. On my way back I was losing my eyesight very fast. Had it not been for my guide Dakipa Sherpa, I would not have made it back,” Shreshta said. After reaching base camp he was admitted at a hospital at Lukla and then at Kathmandu. Post treatment, his vision slowly returned after nearly 72 hours. “One has to remove self stigma first and come out,” is his advice to the HIV affected. “Chase your dream without substance abuse. Substance abuse kills dreams,” is Shreshta’s message to the youth, who was a drug abuser in his teenage years and contracted the deadly disease through needle sharing.last_img read more

Ira Hayes – Sad Fate of the Native American who Helped Raise

first_img“There they battled up Iwo Jima’s hill, Two hundred and fifty menBut only twenty-seven lived to walk back down again. And when the fight was over, And when Old Glory raisedAmong the men who held it high, Was the Indian, Ira Hayes Johny Cash, “The Ballad of Ira Hayes” Fear, without a doubt, is everyone’s inner struggle. When confronted and an ordinary human stands up, rises against the odds and faces the challenge, this ordinary man becomes a hero. For “being terrified but going ahead and doing what must be done―that’s courage” (Piers Anthony, Castle Roogna), and heroes are nothing other than ordinary people who by acting in the heat of the moment can make themselves extraordinary.One of the greatest acts of heroism was performed by the simplest of men. Ira Hayes, an introspective 22-year-old Native America from the Pima tribe and a U.S. Marine, on February 23, 1945, in the midst of the Battle of Iwo Jima, was one of the patriot soldiers who raised the U.S. flag atop Mount Suribachi while the war still raged on the volcanic rock. The image captured by photographer Joe Rosenthal became an iconic one, earning him a Pulitzer Prize. As for the story of the heroic Marine, his ended up being one of the saddest stories.Hayes was depicted on the Iwo Jima Memorial as one of six men raising the American flag on Iwo Jima. Author: Xephrail CC BY-SA 3.0First and foremost, when deciding to write the story of Ira Hayes, one couldn’t find a better way to do it than to begin by quoting Johnny Cash, a brilliant soul who managed to sum up a story so poignantly: “The Indian who raised the flag on Iwo Jima.”Born on January 12, 1923, to a World War I veteran and a Presbyterian school teacher in Sacaton, Arizona, the capital and the very heart of the Gila River Indian Reservation, Ira Hayes was the oldest of six children. He was a quiet and withdrawn boy with an excellent understanding of the English language even when very young.His devoted mother a full member of the Pima tribe, aspired for her children to be literate and educated members of this new world which they were now unwillingly a part of, and made sure this was the case.Ira HayesIn 1932, Ira and his family were forced out of their home–“The white man’s greed,” sang Johnny Cash–and relocated 12 miles northwest to Bapchule, where Ira continued his education at the Phoenix Indian School. Still the same shy Pima boy, he was an excellent student. Former classmates would say, “Ira wasn’t like the other guys. He was shy and never talked to us girls” and his family would describe him as “quiet, and somewhat distant.” He was a type of person who seemed to be immersed deep in his own thoughts, one who wouldn’t speak unless he is spoken to.But when he did speak it was of was his determination to enlist in the United States Marine Corps. He felt it was his duty to assist his homeland and fellowmen in dire need following Japan’s shocking military strike on Pearl Harbor. He joined the Marines on August 26, 1942. He was 19 years old and ready to prove his worth.The shy boy rose to the challenge and endured the rigorous military discipline. Not just that, he volunteered to be a “paramarine,” a paratrooper. In no time he came to be known amid the unit as “Chief Falling Cloud” and a respected Private First Class among his soon to be brothers in arms at the Parachute Marine Training School at Camp Gillespie in San Diego. He was called into action and along with the silver “jump wings” attached to his uniform was shipped to the South Pacific in Noumea, New Caledonia, as a fully trained parachutist and distinguished member of the Marine Corps.From then on he was shifted back and forth from the Guadalcanal and San Diego in what were two major battles for him and his fellow soldiers that lasted for 11 months up until February 19, 1945, when every surviving man deemed ready for battle was dropped on the southern side of Iwo Jima. They were to join a large contingent of approximately 70,000 Marines that landed on the island earlier that morning, in “Operation Detachment.” It was a last man standing effort to capture a strategic point near Japan’s mainland.The volcanic island of 21 square miles was one of the strongest military strongholds for Japan and the Allies wanted to prevent them from using it. Furthermore, they saw it as the best possible rallying spot from where they could advance their invasion of Japan’s mainland.It was the first ever ground assault for the U.S. Marines on Japanese home ground and it wasn’t going to be easy. It was estimated more than 20,000 Japanese soldiers were present but concealed, placed out of sight in an underground network of pits and tunnels dug beneath the highest peak on the island, Mount Suribachi. The rest were stationed in bunkers carved into the mountain itself, making it look like a heavily fortified and armed mountainous Motte Castle of the middle ages. It had to be taken down, so with all of their forces the allies struck at its heart from the very beginning.Mount Suribachi on Iwo JimaMany of the Marines died. Probably more than should have on their advance toward the mountain peak. However, after four days of blood splatter and relentless battle, some of the fiercest days recorded in the history of war, the Marines were close and picked 40 men tasked to climb the highest spot, place a telecommunication line, and most importantly, raise the American flag for everyone still fighting bellow to see it waiving.The U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial in Arlington, VirginiaThe same day, on February 23, 1945, six of them survived the uphill stretch and placed the flag in the manner as it was captured by Rosenthal, the war photographer who by only recording a tiny fraction of a second, immortalized the men. While we all know the picture that came to be the iconic representation of America’s hard-won victory and probably the most powerful symbols of patriotism among its citizens today, almost no one knows much about the boys raising the flag. They might have won Joe Rosenthal the Pulitzer, and inspired Felix de Weldon to sculpt the Marine Corps War Memorial that is now standing beside the Arlington National Cemetery, but it brought nothing but death or misery for the young men.Seventh-War-Loan-Drive-Poster (May 11–July 4, 1945)Harlon Block, a farm boy from Rio Grande, Texas. Franklin Sousley from Eastern Kentucky, a boy who never really had a father and had lived as a grown man as early as eight years of age. Mike Strank, a Czechoslovakian immigrant and a coal miner in Pennsylvania. Rene Gagnon from Manchester, New Hampshire, a descendant of French Canadian parents. John “Jack” Bradley, a paramedic from Antigo, Wisconsin, and father to James Bradley who recently, upon discovering his daddy’s post-war letters, wrote and published the book Flags of our Fathers, which Clint Eastwood adapted into the critically acclaimed movie of the same name in 2006.Hayes is pictured to the far leftThree of them died on the way down: Strank, Sousley, and Block, who according to Bradley was still waiting his very first kiss, died in combat in the following days. As for Hayes himself, the Indian boy deemed a non-citizen on his own land, he left the war uninjured but with a head loaded with the sorrowful memories of his dead brothers and an image of a mass graveyard he left behind.Ira Hayes (left) with Los Angeles mayor Fletcher Bowron (1947)After the end of the war, one would think that after such unspeakable horrors, survivors would be taken care of and offered solace. In need of national heroes, the military sent the three survivors on a sort of tour. They were carried from town to town and paraded through the streets of no less than 32 cities. With many awarded medals as honorary gratifications for his sacrifices, but without proper care for the trauma he had suffered, Ira was left to cope alone and with the feeling of guilt trapped inside. For he was alive and celebrated as a hero for only raising a flag, while so many mothers and fathers were shedding tears over their deceased kids that died doing much more. Most of all he was feeling betrayed and deserted by the same nation he solemnly swore to protect.Hayes’s funeral was held in the C. H. Cook Memorial Church in Sacaton, Arizona Author: Marine 69-71 CC BY-SA 4.0Unable to find peace of mind nor a steady job and with no one to provide him comfort, understanding, or therapeutic guidance, Ira drowned his sorrows in alcohol and became a drifter, a loner who found himself behind bars. He was found dead on the pavement near his home in Arizona on January 24, 1955, only 32 years old. It was no more than 10 years since he famously raised the American flag on Mount Suribachi.Hayes’s headstone in Arlington, Virginia. Author: dbking CC BY 2.0But in between those years, this war veteran, marked as drunk and alcoholic by society, made one inspirational Forrest Gumpian barefoot walk of no less than 1,300 miles from his home in Arizona right to Harlon Block’s home in Texas, only to tell his family that their son, who was controversially mistaken with a Sgt. Hank Hansen, was the actual frontman holding the flag in the iconic image. He had tried to tell the military of the mistake in identification, but no one wanted to listen.Read another story from us: The Flying Tailor- The sad story of the man who jumped off the Eiffel Tower in 1912Anyhow, that is the sad story about the shy Pima Indian who raised the flag on Iwo Jima, and if Johnny Cash started it, it is best if he finishes it:Call him drunken Ira Hayes, He won’t answer anymoreNot the whiskey drinkin’ IndianNor the Marine that went to war.last_img read more

The History of Steampunk in Photos

first_imgBefore steampunk developed its own subculture over the last decade or so, it started as a subgenre of literature, specifically of science fiction/fantasy. “Steampunk” is word that was coined in the 1970s to describe stories that celebrate the adventurousness and technological progressiveness of the Victorian Era; the genre actually first came into being at the same time as the scientific romance, an early name for science fiction, back in the actual Victorian Era according to Steampunk Magazine #2. Some of the earliest written works of this type included stories by Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, Edgar Rice Burroughs, and Mark Twain. Those writers, in turn, were heavily influenced by the work and discoveries of leading scientific minds of the time, like Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla, and the reigning social bents toward technology, heavy industry, and colonialization.The August 1927 issue of Amazing Stories featuring work by H. G. Wells.All of those factors, together, made for a body of fiction that is a little hard to define. Some early stories were American novels that dealt with issues of technological progress and the expansions that could arise as a result.Some were about discovering new worlds, such as Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth, and still other stories were studies on what can happen when the wonders of technology are meddled with for malign or foolish ends.Steampunk-style composite apparatus. Photo by Mark Harding CC BY 3.0By World War I, scientific romances became less popular, replaced by the burgeoning ideals of superheroes and the exploits of adventurers. Even so, you could still see those stories popping up in both silent films and early films with sound from the 1920s and ’30s, although they were usually set in what was then the modern day.The attempts at updating weren’t, by and large, very successful, since enough time had passed that a lot of the technology being envisioned by writers like Verne weren’t speculative anymore. They had already not only come into being but had become common enough that they just seemed anachronistic and dated.Original illustration of Jules Verne’s Nautilus engine room.That’s the point at which the film industry started to come to the conscious decision to leave those stories in the Victorian Era, rather than trying to make them more modern. The genre began to take a feel of alternate history, melding the culture and history of that time period along with fantastical and futuristic science.Steampunkforge.com has a slightly different perspective on how the phenomenon of steampunk came into being. At the outset, the genre can be further divided into several distinct types, including Steampulp, Gaslamp fantasy, Victorian Science Fiction, and Les Voyages Extraordinaires, noting also that romance is a common element in all them.‘Maison tournante aérienne’ (aerial rotating house) by Albert Robida for his book Le Vingtième Siècle, a 19th century conception of life in the 20th century.Gaslamp refers to stories that are in urban settings in the U.S., Canada, or other Western countries and are usually set during the Victorian or Edwardian era. Victorian Science Fiction is set in Europe, and almost always in England. Les Voyages Extraordinaires can be set in any exotic location, ranging from the jungle to the moon. Steampulp primarily refers to things like 1950s horror movies.The common threads among all types, however, remains science and technology, including clockwork, steam engines, and occasionally powered flight, but only in the context of dirigibles (blimps) and airplanes with propellers.Steampunk outfit with leather vest, heavy gun, vambrace, backpack time machine, mask, and Victorian clothes. Photo by Alexander Schlesier CC BY-SA 3.0As a body of work, Victorian fashion and culture is very common. Protagonists are often of the upper classes, and mad scientists are ubiquitous, whether they are the heroes or the villains of the piece. Female characters are often seen as equals to male characters, too, despite the fact that wasn’t the case in the actual Victorian Era.Pipes Steampunk Time Travel Gears Brass DoorWhat really varies between these two histories is that Booker’s Steampunk Magazine article talks about the 19th century, but the Steampunk Forge discussion goes significantly farther back, in fact, nearly a thousand years farther back. In the anthology One Thousand and One Nights (also known as Arabian Nights), there are references to automatons or robots.Truth Coffee, a steampunk café in Cape Town. Photo Courtsey http://www.yatzer.com/ CC BY-SA 4.0One story features humanoid constructions and another features a mechanical flying horse that could be controlled by keys and travel through time. Sir Francis Bacon published Novo Atlantis in the 17th century, an unfinished novel that was a utopian story of the Les Voyages Extraordinaires mold.By the early part of the 19th century, Mary Shelley began the rise of the mad scientist figure in her Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus. While Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth is considered to be the first “true” steampunk novel, the roots clearly lie in these earlier works.Aura Crystall Instrument – 1987. Photo by Marc van den Broek CC BY-SA 4.0Early pioneers in the genre aside, it was the film industry that carried steampunk through the next several decades. A handful of movies in the 1930s kept the steampunk flame alive, but science fiction, including steampunk, really began to take on a life of its own in the ‘50s and ‘60s, amid the atom bomb and the space race.Stories like H. G. Wells War of the Worlds and Conan Doyle’s The Lost World became attractive again, and Walt Disney decided to break from cartoons with Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Disney had wild success, and the Victorian scientific romances were back in style.Steampunk went back out of fashion, for the most part, during the Vietnam era, its technological optimism out of step with current societal trends. But it survived, and by the late 1970s had finally earned the “Steampunk” name.Tim Wetherell’s Clockwork Universe sculpture at Questacon, Canberra, Australia (September 24, 2009). Photo by OpheliaO CC BY-SA 3.0The name itself was a semi-humorous offshoot of another type of science fiction that was gaining popularity – cyberpunk. Cyberpunk looked forward to a time when the boundaries between humans and computers have become increasingly fuzzy, and was rife with threads of rebellion against social norms.steampunk Princess Leia, Star Wars celebration 2015. Photo by Brian CC BY 2.0That spirit of rebelling from the rules of society was also common in those Victorian-era explorations of the science of its time, which often featured steam engines, so… Steampunk.Steampunk festival. Photo by Richard Croft CC BY-SA 2.0Today steampunk has moved from just being about books and movies to encompass a sizeable fandom and an entire subculture. There are steampunk-themed conventions and other events, and fans can spend huge amounts of time, energy, and money coming up with cosplays that combine the most romantic elements of Victorian fashion with bizarre contraptions made of gears and clockwork.Read another story from us: These Peculiar Aztec ‘Swords’ Struck Fear Into the Hearts of the ConquistadorsDespite the fact that steampunk as we know it has been around for over a hundred years, it’s clear that its combination of progressive optimism and scientific discovery still speaks to people’s spirits, even now.last_img read more