Pilot Of Solar Plane Shares Secrets Of Record-Setting Flight

Swiss pilot André Borschberg still has a long flight ahead. He took off Sunday afternoon from Nagoya, Japan, in the Solar Impulse 2, an experimental craft powered only by sunlight that is attempting to set a record as the first plane of its kind to circumnavigate the globe.

After several weather delays, Borschberg is finally en route to Hawaii, on the most difficult leg of the expedition, dubbed the “Earhart Leg” because it is roughly the same path on which Amelia Earhart disappeared 77 years ago. Borschberg is expected in Honolulu by Friday or Saturday.

We spoke with Borschberg via satellite uplink from his cramped cabin in the Solar Impulse 2.

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Dazzling Video Shows What The Night Sky Would Look Like If You Could See Every Asteroid

If you think asteroids are rare, it’s only because they’re so small and dark and hard to see. An eye-opening new video (above) shows what the night sky would look like if we could see the near-Earth asteroids astronomers have discovered — it’s quite a swarm.

“We’re essentially flying around the sun through this population of asteroids with our eyes closed,” Scott Manley, the astronomer who created the animation and posted it to YouTube, says in the video.

The interactive video lets you pan around the night sky as if you were standing in the darkness with a powerful telescope. Manley created it to spotlight the all-too-real danger that asteroids pose to humanity.

Thinking about the threat isn’t much fun, but we have to say that watching the video is. Enjoy!

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You Are Not Your Data (and a project update)

The 2014-15 Fellows talking with Jeffrey Katz following our individual presentations. Photo credit: Ari Beser.

Last week was the Fulbright-National Geographic Pre-departure Orientation in Washington, D.C. In addition to getting a chance to meet the brilliant 2015-2016 Fellows, we (the 2014-15 cohort) gave presentations to the public about our projects. I structured most of my talk around one question: what can you learn from your data? The short answer, of course, is many things. The longer answer is more complex, and it’s really in that complicated area that this project I’ve been working on for the past almost-year has been situated.

The 2014-15 Fellows talking with Jeffrey Katz following our individual presentations. Photo credit: Ari Beser.

But even though my talk was about what you can learn from your data, I find it really important to stress that while your data tells stories about you, you are not your data. We are more than lines on maps and dots on charts, even though those might be the tools that we (I and many other data artists and visualizers) use to represent people.

But we shouldn’t confuse the signifier with the signified. Those of us who work with data are probably often guilty of doing this—it’s easy to forget that metrics are tied to specific people. For the past year, I’ve been working in-person with people whose digital data I’ve also been collecting. The people I’m working with are kind, generous, and intelligent, and there is so much more to them than just their data—if anything, their data is just a beginning.

One of the sample maps from the final website I’m creating.
My own personal map of how much data I'm generating through the many places within London that I've working on my laptop.
My own personal map of how much data I’m generating through the many —> Read More

World of Dances #8

Dancer Alison Stroming from Dance Theatre of Harlem on World of Dances by KIK ECALVO

This post is the latest in the World of Dances series, which profiles ballet and dance photography in iconic, architectonically unique, culturally emblematic, rapidly vanishing landmarks or simply unexpected locations, that Kike captures about during his travels. This post is the latest in the Drones and Small Unmanned Aerial Systems Special Series, which profiles interesting information, research and thoughts on using drones, UAVs and remotely piloted vehicles for journalism and photography.

“My new discovery of aerial photography using drones was a perfect match for my land and underwater work on classic ballet,” said Kike Calvo. “For the last six years, I have been photographing classic ballet dancers around the world in locations that are environmentally unique or historically relevant such as architectonical gems that are vanishing. I have called this project: “World of Dances”. Alison Stroming, professional ballerina with Dance Theatre of Harlem. Photo © KIKE CALVO

Dancer : Alison Stroming (Brazilian)
Ballet: Dance Theatre of Harlem
Location: Connecticut (United States)
Learn more about World of Dances Print Collection
Follow Kike Calvo on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Web, Tumblr, or LinkedIn

Selected reading:
Art and Dance in the Drone Age
Abigail Sartin : Dancing Through Adversity

Books on Dance and Ballet:
Dancers: Behind the Scenes with The Royal Ballet
Darcey Bussell
Dancers Among —> Read More

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