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Taylor Alexander
Attended Santa Clara University
Lives in Campbell, CA
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I'm a huge fan of the work scientist Carl Sagan did to educate regular people on the meaning and value of scientific beliefs. He wrote many books, studied the planets and stars, was a key adviser to NASA for all of their robotic missions to explore our solar system, and taught regular people the value of science in the 1980's, when the world was at risk of destruction through nuclear war and careless misuse of the power of science. More than 30 years ago his show COSMOS helped explain to regular people the history of science, and how we are truly connected to one another and the cosmos at large.

Carl died of cancer in 1996, but his memory lives on. Almost 20 years after his death, science has matured greatly, as has our ability to produce stunning television. Carl's widow Ann Druyan, who co-wrote the original COSMOS series with him, has partnered with FOX Studios and science educator Neil De Grasse Tyson to deliver a new version of COSMOS for a new age. No longer at the brink of nuclear war, the world faces a much more subtle and devious enemy: science illiteracy. Many people just don't care about science, even though it is responsible for all of the incredible technology that makes our lives so much better than the lives of kings just a few centuries ago.

I've been watching the new series every Sunday night when it airs at 9:00 on FOX, just after the Simpsons and Family guy. I am a huge fan of the original series with Carl Sagan, and have been waiting for this new COSMOS series for years as the rumors turned into a real production deal early last year.

So how does the new COSMOS stack up to the original? In short: it's incredible. I've loved science my entire life, and few people have been able to capture the beauty of our universe like Carl Sagan. Neil De Grasse Tyson is not the same kind of speaker as Sagan, but as I have watched the first 5 episodes of the new series, I have seen how Neil's own brand of science education can be just as powerful as Carl's. The most recent episode, "Hiding in the Light", was a beautiful production of art and science that gracefully explained one of the single most important factors of life in this universe: light. I was literally brought to tears as I watched Neil explain how light from the universe interacts with matter and our eyes to paint the most beautiful pictures man has ever seen. The face of a loved one, a Van Gogh painting, or a serene field of flowers are all painted on our eyes by photons that fly through space with incredible properties, all clearly and sensibly explained in this latest COSMOS episode.

You can watch this episode and more on their website, or catch the show on Sundays at 9pm on FOX. The show is specifically written to be accessible to regular people - the ones who normally wouldn't watch a science show and may miss out on the simple beauty of the world around us. I recommend catching the full series from the beginning, but you can jump into any episode. Last nights on light was particularly wonderful:
http://www.cosmosontv.com/watch/215791683929

I hope you enjoy it as much as I have, and share this with others to spread the world about a truly wonderful television show.
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Thanks for the recommendation, watched a few episodes
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Lookin stylish in my VR heaset.
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Heh, well you're in for a treat! This is such a better way to interface with computers than a monitor or TV. You know how nice headphones are often better for music than nice speakers because the sound goes straight to your ears? VR is like that for your eyes, only you are also surrounded in the screen. I have been watching movies at night on my janky cell phone VR and it's already nicer than staring across the room to the TV. The GoShow app for Android plays VR movies, and it has a mode where the screen slowly drifts towards your center of view when you move, so you can just lay down however you want and the movie is right there. And even though each eye is getting only a small portion of one half of my phone's 1080p screen, the fact that the picture is right in front of your face means you see more or less as much detail as you would on a TV across the room. When they bump this stuff up to 4k screens (2k cell phone was just announced today, so this is coming), we will be all set to live our lives inside of computers. :)
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This is really cool, I always wondered how they make chains! I love how powerful a simple animated image can be at explaining things.
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I've always heard the space station is the size of a football field, but this image really makes it clear!
 
Did you know the International Space Station, including its large solar arrays, spans the area of a U.S. football field, including the end zones, and weighs over 900,000 pounds? The complex has more livable room than a conventional six-bedroom house, and has two bathrooms, a gymnasium and a 360-degree bay window.

The big game on Sunday will be broadcast during the space station astronauts’ sleep period. Flight controllers are expected to uplink the game to the crew, but they likely will not watch a replay of the Super Bowl until a later date when time permits.

#nasa #iss #space #superbowl #sb48 #spacestation #astronauts #superbowlxlviii

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New look. :)
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Shannon Beth Walter's profile photoCarrie Pogorelc's profile photoAlex Arkhangelskiy's profile photoTaylor Alexander's profile photo
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Don't worry, I didn't join until well after "it was cool", so I don't think it counts.
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Went for a walk today with my home made Virtual Reality system aka my phone in a Durovis Dive. Used a fish eye lens to get a wider field of view than the somewhat narrow default view from the camera. Interestingly, this gave me about the same FOV as I have naturally, but it was compressed into a narrower space, which was interesting. I kept walking too far to the left, I think because it the compressed FOV made it harder to determine how centered I was on the path. Made it all the way around the block without too much trouble, but it sure was strange! I think I could adapt though, if the camera was centered or I had two. Might even be able to walk with a field of view greater than 180. That would be fun to try!
#virtualreality #durovisdive not #oculusrift
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Hey +Durovis Dive Users! I designed a lens holder that uses MUCH better lenses! The Dive headset is wonderful, and is a major improvement over my OpenDive, but these lenses (from the FOV2GO) are much better. Try this out!
http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:277225
Stefan, you need to try this. If you can't get the lenses (linked on the page) please let me know and I will get some for you!
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Got my Durovis Dive virtual reality headset in the mail today, tried it briefly as soon as I got in the car, then drove to lunch and immediately broke my cell phone as I got out of the car. I just want to have virtual reality, gahhhh!! The headset is very nice quality though, definitely feels worth it. Its much better than my cobbled together Open Dive. It actually stays on my face! At least I had insurance. New Nexus shows up tomorrow. Thanks T-Mobile!
#virtualreality #oculusrift  #DurovisDive
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Also, here is the modified lens holder:
http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:277225

I made them tonight and the improvement is astronomical. Since I used these lenses in my OpenDive I had no idea how much worse the stock Dive lenses were - I was not happy with the performance of the Dive headset at all when I got it. Luckily, you can make it a truly great VR experience by swapping out the stock lenses for these ones!
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For two years, one of my good friends has been working on starting a company that captures the value of 3D printing in products regular people can buy.

Today that company takes the first step out into the open, launching a kickstarter project that would land you with your own custom 3D printed iPhone case. These are designed with care, and I even helped advise on some mechanical design decisions. They've got a strong mass-manufactured bumper that lasts forever, with a totally custom 3D printed insert that shows off who you are and can take a beating. I even helped stress test some!

If you have an iphone, or just want to order this as a special gift from the future, support Fraems on Kickstarter!

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/748480163/fraemes-personalizable-swappable-3d-printed-iphone
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Taylor Alexander

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Wow, this is beautiful! If anyone out there is near Tbilisi in the Republic of Georgia, my brother is starting up a snowboarding school to help people learn. The mountains are cheap and uncrowded, and he's been snowboarding all his life. I wish it was like this in Tahoe!
http://www.tbilisisnowboardschool.com/
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Have him in circles
469 people
Emily Wetherley's profile photo
David Crawley's profile photo
Work
Occupation
Mechanical Engineer, Photographer, Entrepreneur
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Currently
Campbell, CA
Previously
Santa Cruz, CA - Cupertino, CA - Santa Clara, CA
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I rock your socks off.
Education
  • Santa Clara University
  • San Lorenzo Valley High
  • Brook Knoll Elementary
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Male
Birthday
October 25