Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Websites That Teaches You To Code

Websites That Teaches You To Code:

1. Udacity

Udacity is one of the best-known MOOCs (or Massive Online Open Courses) available on the Web, and the content it contains can tutor you on everything from Android apps to social network analysis. Short videos a few minutes in length are punctuated by quizzes and exercises, and once you've signed up for a particular course it can last from a few weeks to a few months (check the information page for each individual course). You can think of Udacity as attending college over the Web, just without the fancy diploma at the end. Much of the material on the site (described as "courseware") is available free of charge, but you do have the option to pay if you want to get one-on-one tuition or take on the interactive projects that come with the course. Some courses are funded by corporate sponsors; Google has built the Android app development one, for example. The Udacity model won't suit everyone but it offers a broad range of useful content that you can fit around your existing lifestyle, particularly when you take the mobile apps (for Android and iOS) into consideration. Source: https://www.udacity.com/

2. Codecademy

If you want to begin right at the start, then Codecademy is a great place to dive into coding. The site is intuitive, accessible, and covers HTML, CSS, Javascript, jQuery, Python, Ruby and PHP. Each course is split up into easily digestible sections. You can see the titles of these sections, as well as the estimated time commitment required to complete them, before you get started. You won't come out the other end as a programming master but the appeal of Codecademy lies in its accessibility rather than its depth. At the heart of the Codecademy site is the interactive portal that enables you to take lessons and exercises right within your browser, with feedback and instruction appearing alongside in an instant as you type. As you're doing rather than simply reading or watching, you can pick up the basics very quickly, and because Codecademy is free it's a great way of working out whether this coding lark is for you or not before you go deeper somewhere else. Source: http://www.codecademy.com/

3. Treehouse

Treehouse is like a paid-for, more complex upgrade to Codecademy and would be the natural next step if you pass the Codecademy courses with flying colors. There are two subscription models—a basic $25/month one and a pro $49/month upgrade—but if you want to test the waters for free then there's a 14-day trial available that you can sign up for without any obligation. As you would expect for $25 and above each month, the materials and content provided by Treehouse is consistently top notch. Videos, interactive exercises, quizzes, forums, expert speakers and other resources are all combined with Treehouse, though you'll need to upgrade to the top subscription level to take advantage of some of the more exclusive workshops and interviews. The step-by-step, guided approach is useful for tackling areas that you're not familiar with, and the available tracks cover HTML, CSS, WordPress, Ruby, PHP, Android, iOS, JavaScript and more. The site is slick and simple to navigate around too. Source: http://teamtreehouse.com/?SSAID=314743

4. Code School

"Learn by doing" is the mantra of Code School, though it's an approach adopted by many of the resources we've mentioned on this list. This isn't for beginners, though: you're going to need some level of coding know-how to make sense of the material that Code School places in front of you. You could consider moving on to Code School after Udacity, Codecademy or even Treehouse, for example, though it depends on your existing level of knowledge and the type of code you're working with. There are four main paths to choose from—Ruby, HTML/CSS, iOS and JavaScript—but other courses outside of these main paths touch on Git, Objective-C, JQuery and other more detailed coding standards. Some of the material on the site is free, though there's a flat monthly fee of $29 to get access to everything. Like Treehouse, there's a mixture of screencasts, video tutorials and interactive challenges to help you get on top of your chosen topic as quickly as possible. Source: https://www.codeschool.com/

5. Dash

Dash is a project from educational institution General Assembly that focuses on building websites, specifically HTML, CSS and JavaScript. Like Codecademy, the courses are designed to be easy to get started with and very interactive right from the beginning—if you want to be able to jump straight in with as little preamble as possible then Dash could be for you. One of the spin-offs created by Dash lets you build your own custom Tumblr theme, which gives you some idea of where this resource is pitched. You might not be able to launch a career as a freelance Web designer on the back of Dash alone, but it's free to use and friendly for beginners, and by the time you come out the other end you'll certainly have a solid foundation in browser coding skills. The step-by-step guidance and rigid structure of the course may feel a bit limiting at times, but if you want to be guided very carefully through the fundamentals of the Web then it's perfect.

6. Code Avengers

Like Dash, the Code Avengers site focuses on HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, though after a helpful introductory lesson you'll need to pay to carry on with your coding education. HTML and CSS modules cost $29 each while the JavaScript ones will set you back $39 a pop—a lifetime access option is also available for $125. Use the free lessons to gauge whether the level that Code Avengers is pitched at fits in with where you are and what you want to learn. Code Avengers makes what can be a daunting and inaccessible topic very easy to get into. The way that repetition and reinforcement is used over each of the 12-hour courses means that you come away with some good programming habits as well as a good grounding in the ins and outs of Web development. The interface is clear and clean as well, and there's a good mix of coding challenges, step-by-step instructions and practical projects to help you make progress with your Web development skills. Source: http://www.codeavengers.com/

Monday, 29 December 2014

Art With Sewing Machine

Art With Sewing Machine:

Meredith Woolnough is a visual artist from Australia with a few nifty talents up her sleeve. One happens to be working with a sewing machine, and secondly she is able to capture the natural world using synthetic materials in such an incredible way. Her choice of water-soluble fabric allows the light to shine through the delicate material, adding layers of dimension.
Her process starts by finding a natural form to trace onto her selected fabric. Once complete, she can mount her embroideries to paper, suspend them in a clear glass frame, or put them on a t-shirt. She does it all using her good old-fashioned sewing machine.
Check out a number of different pieces from her growing collection and learn more about the artist below.
Bored Panda scored an interview with the artist, in which she gushed about her love for intricate patterns found throughout nature. She told the online site, “Nature is an endless source of inspiration for my work. I am fascinated by the patterns and structures found within the growth systems of plants, coral andshells, the way things branch out and unfurl.”
Meredith shows off her incredible work at a number of exhibits, she is scheduled for 3 separate showcases in the next 2 months. Meredith lives near the coast in Newcastle NSW, Australia. Using her unique drawing and sewing techniques she creates incredible “openwork compositions” that are proudly owned by both public and private collectors. You can own a piece of her work for yourself, prices range from the low hundreds to a few-thosand dollars.
In order to gain inspiration for her artwork, Meredith tries to spend plenty of time outdoors. She comments on the matter, “I go for regular bushwalks around my local area and I scuba dive whenever I can.”
By venturing to new places, Meredith is able to absorb different ideas she has not tried before. She is always open to inspiration from sources that are not nature themed, although she continually finds herself going back to the roots’ of the earth. She does push herself out of the box, last year she made a fun goal to complete a different piece of text every day for an entire month.
She didn’t just fashion random letters, Meredith used this as a way to journal her thoughts and feelings each day. When the text was first stitched it was easy to read, but Meredith’s secrets were washed away as soon as the fabric was introduced to water.
She shares an interesting fact about the non-woven water-soluble fabric she is fond of using. The medical industry used this type of material to make their laundry bags, that way they could toss them in the washing machine and the bag would simply dissolve so that no one had to touch the soiled laundry.
This benefits Meredith because as she says of her process, “I use this water-soluble film as my base fabric and once my embroidered design is complete I simply wash it all away in hot water to leave my skeleton of stitches behind.”
This also presents a unique challenge, because each stitch must be carefully connected, otherwise the entire design will fall to messy pieces. It has taken her years, but Meredith has fashioned a way of putting it all together that ensures each stitch is interconnected and will hold up.
When she is not creating these awesome nature embroideries, Meredith updates her blog where she highlights new projects she is working on, as well as explains how you can make your own natural art embroidery.

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Unexpected Space Discoveries

Unexpected Space Discoveries

The apparent infinity of space never fails to astound us laypeople with its pretty lights and hypnotizing patterns. However, even scientists and astronomers are often flabbergasted by some of the more extreme discoveries.

  • A Massive Debris Ring

1- debris ring
A newly discovered star, affectionately dubbed IRAS 13481-6124, is already helping astronomers figure out how gigantic stars are made. There are different classifications of stars, yet it basically boils down to “small” and “big.” And our Sun is on the little side of things. It’s in one of the smaller subsets of stars and it’s not even massive enough to die in a glorious explosion, like all the cool stars in the universe. Instead, it simply sheds itself to death, going out with a weak cough rather than a bang. Some theories suggest that larger stars could form when smaller ones join together, though it appears that IRAS was formed much like its smaller brethren, discrediting the idea of stellar mergers.
And while IRAS is still a newborn, it’s already a fat and healthy baby. It’s located 10,000 light-years away in the constellation Centaurus, and it’s surrounded by a disk of stellar debris—the birthing stage of a possible solar system. It’s the first time astronomers have been able to observe such an event, and a heavy (20 times the mass of our Sun), metal-rich star such as IRAS holds the necessary elements for the formation of planets—possibly even life.

  • The Great Void

2- void
Peering out into space is like looking into a kaleidoscope—the polychromatic nebulae and vibrant galaxies are all spectacularly unique. And that’s the one thing we do know about space—it’s full of stuff. But the universe constantly throws curveballs our way—like the Bootes Void, which is just a massive chunk of emptiness.
Named for its proximity to the constellation Bootes, it’s also known as The Great Void. It was discovered in 1981 by Robert Kirshner and his colleagues, who were shocked to find a seemingly empty spheroid of space. After much scrutiny, Kirshner and his team were only able to detect a paltry 60 galaxies in an area spanning a whopping 250–330 million light-years.
For a piece of real estate that expansive, the expected number is closer to 10,000 galaxies. And for comparison, the Milky Way itself has at least 24 neighbors within just 3 million light-years, which is practically walking distance.
Technically, this void shouldn’t exist, as current theories are only prepared to deal with much smaller “empty” areas. The sheer scale of this vacuous monster necessitates new theories, including the most interesting and far-fetched idea: alien intervention.

  • An Ancient Dark Matter Collision

3- dark matter
There’s a problem with our galaxy: It’s “ringing” like a struck bell, and astronomers aren’t sure why. But a new theory suggests that this anomaly is the result of a massive perturbation 100 million years ago. This perturbation came in the form of a collision—either with another, much smaller galaxy, or with a hurtling glob of dark matter.
If this theory holds, it will solve a galactic mystery: Our galaxy’s north and south hemispheres don’t match, with the structure changing distinctly as we move past the midpoint of the Milky Way. This disequilibrium was supposedly caused by vertical waves, which were themselves the result of invisible “dark matter satellites” (kind of like invisible galaxies) moving through the galactic plane. Computer simulations suggest that this discord will settle down relatively soon—it’ll only take another 100 million years.

  • The Smallest, Oldest Galaxies

4- smallest galaxies
The history of our universe is hidden from us not only by unimaginable spans of time and distance, but also by seemingly endless amounts of matter. Gas and dust upend the beams of light that serve as our only glimpses into the formative universe. But sometimes, immensity plays in our favor, and astronomers can effectively see regions of space that are far behind massive objects because photons traveling past are warped and magnified. This is called gravitational lensing, and it’s allowing NASA to see the dimmest, smallest, oldest galaxies ever.
Using the galaxy cluster Abell 2744 as a lens, astronomers have recently imaged thousands of fetal galaxies that, at 12 billion years old, are almost as old as the universe itself. Though Abell 2744 is only 3.5 billion light-years away, the magnifying effect is so great that it’s supplied us with the deepest image of the universe ever: the First Frontier Field. Since the lens increases the apparent size of distant objects by up to 20 times, we’re able to see seriously tiny and faint objects that are situated almost at the very end of space itself.

  • A Gigantic Hydrogen Filament

5- hydrogen
A gigantic thread of pure hydrogen spotted in the NGC 7448 group of galaxies has scientists scratching their heads. Located 500 million light-years away, the hydrogen bridge stretches a length of 2.6 million light-years (well over 20 times the size of our Milky Way) and connects several galaxies with its ghoulishly green appendages.
Astronomers never expected to find such a gassy behemoth, and their surprise was twofold: First, such large collections of hydrogen are never found outside of galaxies, since they exist within to offer star-birthing material. Second, the sheer size of the thing is just mind-boggling—it contains more hydrogen than the Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies combined, and Andromeda is larger and more generously star-endowed than our own galactic home. There are several possible explanations, the most glamorous of which suggests that we’re seeing the remnant of a galactic collision. It stands to reason that the sheer gravitational influence of the involved galaxies drew out and stretched the stream of gas like an ethereal strand of spaghetti.

  • The Planet That Shouldn’t Exist

6- kepler
Kepler 78b is an anomaly: It shouldn’t exist. Like Jupiter’s moon Io, Kepler 78b is a hellish planet bedecked in lava and fire. Yet its odd size, combined with its unusually tight orbit around its star, have caused a slight ruckus in the scientific community.
Astronomers don’t really know how a planet of this size ended up so close to its parent star, since there are no planet-formation theories consistent with the reality. And when we say close, we mean within snuggling range—Kepler 78b is a mere 1.6 million kilometers (1 million mi) away from its sun, making a full year on Kepler 78b just under nine hours long.
The planet is only 1.2 times as large as Earth and not even twice as massive, making it one of the most Earth-like planets ever found. Its location ensures a thorough roasting, and temperatures on the surface can reach 2,400 degrees Celsius (4,300 °F). Data also suggests that the star was much larger in its youth, which places Kepler 78b’s current orbit comfortably within its former stellar radius. Therefore the planet obviously could not have formed where it now sits, so new theories must be put forth. All that’s known for sure is that 78b will soon be devoured by its star as it spirals ever closer to its inevitable destruction.

  • A Massive Star Cluster In The Milky Way

7- quintuplet
Only 25,000 light-years away, the Quintuplet Cluster is one of the Milky Way’s most spectacular sights. The cluster is akin to a cosmic kindergarten—full of young, brightly shining stars. This area of space is also very densely packed, with stars located within punching distance of each other.
And with such short distances between them, they’ve whipped up an incendiary gaseous cocktail that reaches temperatures of 50 million degrees Celsius (90 million °F). The cluster is also located precariously close to the center of the galaxy, where supergiant black hole Sagittarius A gobbles up matter with alarming voracity.
Even though the QC is the most massive, dense, and luminous cluster in our galaxy, it’s rendered practically invisible by the sheer amount of debris in the way. The center of the Milky Way is obscured by patches of white-hot gas and dust. Thus, the Quintuplet Cluster remained hidden until 1990 when astronomers were able to peer through the shroud using infrared imaging.
But just like the McRib and the dodo, the Quintuplet Cluster is only available for a limited time; being a short walk away from the galactic center, it will soon be torn apart by gravitational fury. So grab your most potent infrared telescope and enjoy the view while it lasts (for another million years).

  • A Gigantic Exosolar System

8- gas giant
As our stellar encyclopedia grows, we’re finding that many stars host multi-planetary systems. There are 466 such specimens, though almost half of them contain only two planets. Younger systems are much easier to spot because they still retain residual heat from their formation, and one such example is HR 8799. The large, young star hosts four hulking gas giants that make even Jupiter look puny. Luckily, the planets’ distance from the star ensures that their light signature (visible in infrared) is readily apparent and not overwhelmed by the light from their parent.
And while the smallest member of this alien solar system makes Jupiter look like a preschooler, the largest is up to 35 times as massive as the Jovian giant. Its size, age, and the fact that the system is only 130 light-years from Earth made HR 8799 relatively easy to spot. And seeing such giant gas planets at such distance from the solar center opens up new theories about how planets form due to the observed differences between this system and our own.

  • The Milky Way’s Blanket

9- milky way
Our Milky Way is embroiled in a massive cosmic mystery: Certain expected subatomic particles, called Baryons, seem to be missing. Basically, there should be a lot more stuff in our galaxy than scientists have yet been able to detect (and we’re not even talking about dark matter).
But a recent discovery may finally put an end to the conundrum, as it appears that our galaxy is enveloped by an immense cloud of super-hot gas. It forms a halo of sorts around the Milky Way, and it burns at a temperature of 1–2.5 million Kelvin. The Chandra Observatory, in collaboration with the European XMM-Newton and Japanese Suzaku satellites, were able to observe some funky goings-on around our solar neighborhood. Collectively, they deduced that the galaxy is crowned by an unexpectedly large glut of simmering gas.
The gas halo is of indeterminate size, though the different space agencies can agree that it’s really darn big—at least several times the size of the galaxy itself, though it could potentially extend much farther out.

  • The Largest Radio Galaxy Ever Discovered

10- radio galaxy
Radio galaxies are incredibly pleasing to look at. They’re so-named because they emit great amounts of energy at the radio wavelengths and look like giant cosmic raves. The jets or lobes that blast from the galaxies’ centers are accelerated by massive black holes, and this activity makes them prime targets for our radio telescopes.
The largest of the radio galaxies is named J1420-0545 and it stretches across a staggering 15 million light-years of space. That equates to 4.5 mega-parsecs across. But radio galaxies live fast and die young, with their iconic, blazing jets sputtering out after 10,000 years or so—a period of time much shorter than even 1 percent of the galaxy’s lifespan.
But because these galaxies output such crazy amounts of matter and radiation, they exhaust themselves very quickly. A moment later (on cosmological scales) they simply fade out and become inconspicuous relics. Though it often does, this may not necessarily spell death, as the central black hole can again become active, setting the whole galaxy alight once more.

Friday, 26 December 2014

Pyro Board: An Audio Visualizer Created from an Array of 2,500 Flames

Pyro Board: An Audio Visualizer Created from an Array of 2,500 Flames


So here’s a thing to never try at home. Derek Muller from the very fine science video blog Veritasium visits with a team of “phsyics and chemistry demonstrators” who built this ridiculous sound board that demonstrates the effect of sound waves traveling through flammable gas. The first half deals mostly with how it works, around 3:38 it turns into pure music and fire.

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Stunning Gravity- Defying Sculptures

Stunning Gravity- Defying Sculptures:

Cornelia Konrads is an artist from Wuppertal, Germany. She is well-known for her land art and site-specific art installations and has been freelancing since 1998. Konrads has been commissioned for several permanent and temporary public artworks as well as for numerous private collections, sculpture parks and gardens.
On her site you can find an extensive collection of her amazing sculptural work. In the examples below, we focus on Konrads outdoor artwork that seems to defy gravity and float in the air. Upon close inspection you can see wires suspending the artwork but from afar, the pieces are truly mystical, especially given their beautiful surroundings.


cornelia konrads floating sculptures that defy gravity (5)
Artwork by Cornelia Konrads


cornelia konrads floating sculptures that defy gravity (8)
Artwork by Cornelia Konrads


cornelia konrads floating sculptures that defy gravity (7)
Artwork by Cornelia Konrads


cornelia konrads floating sculptures that defy gravity (4)
Artwork by Cornelia Konrads


cornelia konrads floating sculptures that defy gravity (2)
Artwork by Cornelia Konrads


cornelia konrads floating sculptures that defy gravity (1)
Artwork by Cornelia Konrads


cornelia konrads floating sculptures that defy gravity (3)
Artwork by Cornelia Konrads


cornelia konrads floating sculptures that defy gravity (6)
Artwork by Cornelia Konrads

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Learn To Fix Anything With These Websites

Learn To Fix Anything With These Websites:

No one likes it when their things break. It might be something big, like your TV or your car, or something smaller, like a leaky faucet or a cracked floor tile. You can spend hundreds of dollars to have a professional help you out, or you can learn how to fix it yourself for the cost of some tools and a couple hours of work. Which would you rather do?

Be Safe!

Before you go trying to fix all of your problems by yourself, make sure that you’re making safe decisions. If something really expensive or potentially dangerous (especially things that include flames or electricity) is broken, I strongly recommend calling a professional unless you have experience with this sort of thing.

Electronics: iFixit

With almost 2,000 Mac repair guides, 2,000 phone repair guides, and 1,000 PC repair guides, iFixit has you covered for just about any electronic repair you could want to undertake. There are camera, automotive, appliance, household, and computer guides, as well.
The guides are incredibly detailed and walk you through every conceivable step in the repair process; for example, the guide on how to replace the headphone and speaker jack assembly on a Samsung Galaxy SIII has no less than eleven steps to take off the back cover and remove the battery, SIM card, and microSD card. Nothing is left to chance in these guides, which is great for inexperienced tinkerers.
The pictures included in each guide are of high quality, making it very easy to see what needs to be done to make the repair, and some guides also include videos. Each guide includes a list of tools and parts that are needed, many of which you can purchase directly from the iFixit store, which offers useful things like the iOpener, a heated pack that will help you open your iPad, and this cool magnetic project mat. Between the supplies for sale and the thousands of repair guides, you’ll always have what you need to fix your laptop, phone, tablet, or game console.

Around the House: The Family Handyman

Though The Family Handyman is a subscription magazine, their website offers a wealth of repair tips for various parts of your home. There are sections for heating and cooling, electrical, floors, automotive, painting, pest control, plumbing, and a wide range of other things. It’s not always easy to find what you’re looking for in the category pages, but running a search will help you get to the guide you need.
The page layout on The Family Handyman isn’t the best, but once you get used to it, you’ll be able to find useful information. For example, it doesn’t always look like the Article tab on the page has the information you need, but you’ll find it if you scroll down. Similarly, many of the images are actually sliders, and will allow you to see two or three different images that will give you a better idea of what you need to do.
Although the images aren’t quite as detailed as the ones you’ll find on iFixit, you should be able to use The Family Handyman to get through almost any repair without too much trouble, especially if you have some mechanical or construction experience. For example, in an article about installing a tile floor in your bathroom, you’re instructed to remove the toilet, but left to figure out how to do that on your own.
And if you can’t find what you need on The Family Handyman, you can always check out these 8 websites full of home DIY tips.

Your Car: DIY Auto School

Fixing your own car can be a bit scary, but DIY Auto School make the process a lot easier. Fromrestoring a rusted-out car to fixing a dent, the guys from the school will give you tips to get you through the process, even if you’re a total newbie to car repair (though you might want to leave some of the more complicated repairs to a professional).

Because DIY Auto School is a YouTube channel, there’s not much organization to speak of, so your best bet is to go to their page and then search for what you’re looking for and see if they have a video on it. There are many videos on how to restore old cars and fix dents and collision damage. You’ll also find a number of videos on how to prep and paint your car and some more common tasks like replacing brake pads.
You never really know if you’re going to find what you’re looking for at DIY Auto School, but there’s a lot of great information on their channel. And because it’s on YouTube, if you can’t find a tutorial on the subject you want, you can continue searching through other channels to get the details of your repair.

Your Bike: Park Tool

If you’ve done any work on your bike in the past, you might’ve used tools made by Park — they’re one of the leading manufacturers of bike repair tools (you might recognize their signature blue color on the website). On the homepage of their repair section, there’s an image of a bike, and all you have to do is click on the part of the bike that you need to fix. If you’re having brake problems, click on the brake section; if you need help with your bottom bracket, just click on the bottom bracket shell. The miscellaneous topics section also contains some very useful articles.
Unless you’re experienced with bikes, some of the topics might be a little advanced. The basics, though, like adjusting the derailleurservicing cantilever brakes, or changing inner tubes, are explained very well and with enough pictures to get you through the process like a pro.
In addition to the repair guides, there’s also Calvin’s Corner, a blog by one of the professional mechanics at Park. While some of the things are targeted specifically for bike shops, you will find some gems like “Basic use of tools” and “Repairing on-the-ride.”


Learning to fix things is a great way to be more self-sufficient and save some money. You never know what’s going to break next, but if you have the resources to fix some of the most common issues with your computer, electronics, home, car, and bike, you’ll be prepared to deal with most of the problems that come up. If you have a toolbox with the basic tools and these four websites bookmarked, you’ll be a handyman in no time!