Beneath the streets of San Francisco’s financial district lie the remains of dozens of sailing ships that once brought people to San Francisco during the gold rush of the mid-19th century. These ships were beached near what was then a small Mexican village called Yerba Buena. In those early days, the waters of San Francisco Bay came all the way up to where is now Montgomery Street—the site of the iconic Transamerica Pyramid. Once the city started to grow, the cove was filled in and the downtown of the city built over it. Many of the ships that dropped anchor there never moved.
The Buried Ships of Yerba Buena Cove by Michael Warner et al. (San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park, National Park Service)Read more »
© Amusing Planet, 2018.
Google’s latest consumer version of Chrome, version number 64, just started cleaning up messy referral links for you. Now, when you go to share an item, you’ll no longer see a long tracking string after a link, just the primary link itself, as spotted by Android Police.
This feature now happens automatically when sharing links in Chrome, either by the Share menu or by copying the link and pasting it elsewhere. Even though it slices off the extra bit of the URL, this doesn’t affect referral information. If you choose, you can copy and paste directly from the URL bar to grab the link in entirety.
As Android Police points out, while this is a useful feature, it does have a couple downsides, albeit...
Soil is typically brown, but when mixed with the right minerals in right quantities, it can yield a fascinating range of colors. You can see such coloring in the walls of the Great Canyon in Arizona and the desert in Utah, but in some places the colors are such extreme and varied that it’s almost surreal.
One of the best examples of colorful landform is on Mount Danxia, in Guangdong Province, in China. The Danxia landforms are made of strips of red sandstone alternating with chalk and other sediments that were deposited over millions of years, like slices of a layered cake. Over 700 individual locations have been identified in China, mostly in southeast and southwest China, where this type of colors and layers can be seen—all of these are referred to as Danxia landforms.
Photo credit: Evgeni Zotov/FlickrRead more »
© Amusing Planet, 2018.
IRVINE, Calif.—Despite rumors to the contrary, the internal combustion engine is far from dead. Recently we've seen several technological advances that will significantly boost the efficiency of gasoline-powered engines. One of these, first reported back in August 2017, is Mazda's breakthrough with compression ignition. On Tuesday, Mazda invited us to its R&D facility in California to learn more about this clever new Skyactiv-X engine, but more importantly we actually got to drive it on the road.
What's so special about this engine then?
The idea behind Skyactiv-X is to be able to run the engine with as lean a fuel-air mixture (known as λ) as possible. Because very lean combustion is cooler than a stoichiometric reaction (where λ=1 and there is exactly enough air to completely burn each molecule of fuel but no more), less energy is wasted as heat. What's more, the exhaust gases contain fewer nasty nitrogen oxides, and the unused air gets put to work. It absorbs the combustion heat and then expands and pushes down on the piston. The result is a cleaner, more efficient, and more powerful engine. And Skyactiv-X uses a very lean mix: a λ up to 2.5.
The Nissan Xmotion may look like an SUV on the surface, but to take step inside is to enter a dense forest of technology. The concept car, revealed today at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, has a total of seven digital touchscreens inside, making it one of the more aggressive attempts by an automaker in recent memory to sweep aside the manual controls of the past and fully embrace a pixelated future.
Is it overkill? Sure. We’re already hearing complaints about the Tesla Model 3’s hyper-minimal all-in-one touchscreen approach to the traditional instrument cluster. It’s not clear that what consumers want in their cars is more screens. But you have to hand it to Nissan for not shying away from this trend.
How an industry-breaking bug stayed secret for seven months — and then leaked out