Which country has the best brains?

Over the past week, the Nobel prizes have been awarded in chemistry, medicine, peace, physics and literature.

Over the intervening 109 years, more than 500 prizes have been awarded. But which nation can claim the most winners? BBC have trawled throught the archives to produce a definitive list of the nations with the biggest brains.

via www.bbc.co.uk

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Twilight Zones

This chart shows the relationship between the angular elevation of the sun relative to the horizon and levels of twilight. The values are for the 24 hours between 1pm BST 12th August 2010 and 1pm BST 13th August 2010, and for the location Brighton in East Sussex (50.8° N 0.1° W). In equatorial regions, night and day breaks very much more quickly. In Brighton on this late summer day, sunset to full darkness took 2 hours and 22 minutes. By comparison, in Singapore (near the equator) the process took 1 hour 11 minutes.

A full listing of data for the two nights Dominic Alves tried to photograph Perseid meteors is at the foot of this description.

via Dominic Alves

Scaling Fallacy

The scaling fallacy is a tendency to assume that a system that works at one scale also works at a larger or smaller scale. Different scales bring with them a new set of challenges that require a new solution.

We often neglect to realize that when on object is scaled, the working stressors on the object do not change at same scale. Like this ant, object at small scales are pushed down upon by a minimal amount of gravity. At larger scale, the load of gravity is at full force. So it is a lot easier for a normal ant to carry 50 times its weight than it is for you and me.

by Christopher Jones