April 14th, 2004

Old Friend

When Asteroids Hit...

Read an interesting article in BBC News 'Science' section this evening. Could We Survive An Asteroid Hit? looks at the impact, destruction and aftermath of an asteroid hitting the center of  London. The figures are based upon previous strikes against our little planet and scientific calculations. Scientists at the University of Arizona have even developed a website so you can calculate the effects of an asteroid strike near you. It's called the Earth Impact Effects Program but I'd recommend reading the BBC article before trying it out (unless you're a scientist in which case you'll understand the jargon already).

I checked out my survival rate if an asteroid hit the center of London (about 6 miles from where I live) and ignoring the radiation effects I got the following if we're hit by a standard 'one in every 1,000 years' asteroids...


The major seismic shaking will arrive at approximately 1.9 seconds.

Richter Scale Magnitude: 5.4
Mercalli Scale Intensity at a distance of 9.66 km:

VI. Felt by all. Many frightened and run outdoors. Persons walk unsteadily. Windows, dishes, glassware broken. Knickknacks, books, etc., off shelves. Pictures off walls. Furniture moved or overturned. Weak plaster and masonry D cracked. Small bells ring (church, school). Trees, bushes shaken (visibly, or heard to rustle).

VII. Difficult to stand. Noticed by drivers of motor cars. Hanging objects quiver. Furniture broken. Damage to masonry D, including cracks. Weak chimneys broken at roof line. Fall of plaster, loose bricks, stones, tiles, cornices (also unbraced parapets and architectural ornaments). Some cracks in masonry C. Waves on ponds; water turbid with mud. Small slides and caving in along sand or gravel banks. Large bells ring. Concrete irrigation ditches damaged.

Masonry C. Ordinary workmanship and mortar; no extreme weaknesses like failing to tie in at corners, but neither reinforced nor designed against horizontal forces.
Masonry D. Weak materials, such as adobe; poor mortar; low standards of workmanship; weak horizontally.


The air blast will arrive at approximately 32.2 seconds.

Peak Overpressure: 51256.1 Pa = 0.5126 bars = 7.2784 psi
Max wind velocity: 91.5 m/s = 204.8 mph
Sound Intensity: 94 dB (May cause ear pain)
Damage Description:

    Multistory wall-bearing buildings will collapse.

    Wood frame buildings will almost completely collapse.

    Glass windows will shatter.

    Up to 90 percent of trees blown down; remainder stripped of branches and leaves.
    Sounds like fun for me!
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Old Friend

....and in other news

Democrats suggest shooting Rumsfeld

On the surface it sounds like they missed a few other choice candidates. But a local Democrat 'club' in Florida took out an advert in a community paper saying in regards to Rumsfled "We should put this S.O.B. up against a wall and say, 'This is one of our bad days,' and pull the trigger."

The advert has been condemned by Democrat party bosses. The full story can be found at Democrat club's ad suggest shooting Rumsfeld (CNN, Tuesday 13th April 2004)

Target Adverts in Your Emails Challenged

A US State Senator is challenging Google's recently announced GMail service. GMail is being set up in competition to Hotmail, Yahoo and the like as a free service offering a gigabyte of email storage for free (you pay about £40 for a tenth of that with Hotmail). The catch is that Google scans every email you send/receive and places targetted advertising into them. Thus if a friend suggests a weekend in Paris you could expect to have ads for hotels and air tickets to Paris included in that mail. Personally I'd get incredibly irritated with that idea very quickly. Full story can be read in Google free email faces legal challenge (Guardian, Tuesday 13th April 2004)

Bush & Blair's Secret Iraq Pact

Just found this one from a few days ago. Sir Christopher Meyer, the British ex-Ambassador to Washington has revealed that President Bush first asked Tony Blair to support the removal of Saddam from power nine days after 9/11 at a private dinner at the White House. To read some of his accounts, and that of another unnamed senior American Official from Cheney's office, check out Bush and Blair made secret pact for Iraq war (Guardian, Sunday 4th April 2004). Should do the wars, and Blairs,  popularity no end of good.

Old Friend

Dream Advertising

I woke up this morning because the dream I was having was interrupted by an ad break.
There I was quite happily dreaming away (I won't say what about as it was actually quite dull) when 'End of Part I' flashed up in my mind and ads started. I can't remember the which ads they were but at this point I woke up.
Beats the dream about the 50ft, 2 ton, genetically mutated bunny ravaging Sussex I had on Saturday night though. I can still remember those news reports (why do I dream of CNN and BBC 24 news feeds???).
Old Friend

Hey!! Bandwagon! Wait for me...

Everyone else is doing it and I want in!!!!

(Although, how predictable)

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The one I really like is this one (spotted in on Jess' LJ and thought I'd spin through tryign to find it ;-p)

Which Random Image are you?
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