Big News in Science and Other Links

Science

The first evidence for cosmic inflation–i.e., the Big Bang–was discovered this week.

Megan Garber at The Atlantic, “What It’s Like to be Right About the Big Bang?”

The search for Flight MH370 is revealing one thing: the ocean is filled with garbage.

Kim Stanley Robinson alert: Paul Rosenfeld, “Would You Take a One-Way Ticket to Mars?”

And as part of his forthcoming 3 million page novel, Breeze Avenue (2015), Richard Grossman has buried a crystal ball deep inside of Princeton Mountain in Colorado. The ball, “made of synthetic sapphire, which is almost as indestructible as diamond,” has the Ten Commandments inscribed on it in Hebrew, and in “20 million years, as a result of natural forces carefully calculated by the geologists, the Torah Ball will emerge from its eroded resting place and bear the Ten Commandments down the mountain.” Hyperarchivalists of the deep future rejoice!

Richard Grossman, The Torah Ball (Synthetic Sapphire, Princeton Mountain, 20 Million Years of Erosion, 2011).

Richard Grossman, The Torah Ball (Synthetic Sapphire, Princeton Mountain, 20 Million Years of Erosion, 2011).

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Apocalypse as Fantasy

Heather Havrilesky has an article published today on Vulture titled, “Why TV Apocalypses Are Really Wish-Fulfillment Fables.” There is some (psychoanalytic) ground being retread here, but I can’t help but smile at the following statements: “Cormac McCarthy’s The Road at first appears bereft of wishful thinking — that is, until you recognize that solitude and scorched horizons are this author’s ideal tromping ground”; and, referring to NBCs Revolution: “This is the apocalypse with a full-time stylist, on heavy antibiotics.”