Are you going to be eclipsed?

If you’re getting ready for the coming eclipse — You can have two minutes of darkness in the daytime, if you are lucky enough to live, predetermined by your family, work and other migratory patterns, in the path of a shadow which was predetermined by physics many many … err … moons ago — then you will enjoy this map from the Washington Post. Everyone will enjoy the trivia and the tidbits there, just as soon as you get used to thinking of the map of the U.S. from a non-Mercator perspective.

There are cool links and interesting tidbits about places big and small all over the eclipse’s path in that map. My favorite:

McCool Junction, Neb., won’t get McCold, but the air temperature during totality drops by an average of about 12 degrees Fahrenheit, according to astrophysicist Fred Espenak.

I’m not going to be in the path of the eclipse, but that’s almost enough to make me want to drive a few hours, just to experience.

And then I remember that, in high school, I worked in a place with a walk in freezer and realize I’ve more-or-less had this experience.

I remember my first two eclipse experiences, too. One was in elementary school and another in junior high. One was an annular eclipse for which we were well-positioned. The other was a total eclipse and we were well off the mark. The only details I remember were that the elementary school let us go outside after a very serious and stern lecture about not looking up. And being unimpressed by the ol’ hole-in-a-piece-of-cardboard method of eclipse viewing.

If you aren’t in a good locale for the lunar shadow making festival, scientists over at Clemson University are going to help you out. They plan to launch a balloon with cameras for streaming. So you can stare into the second brightest thing burning, your computer monitor, and see the whole demonstration of photons and regolith in action. Ain’t science grand?


It is still the summertime — three more weeks of summertime, but no one is counting — and the student television crew is on a roadtrip:

No one made them go, they aren’t in classes and they aren’t doing it for a grade. And they went an hour or so up the road and put together a video package.

Student media is cool.

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