Bi-wing airplanes...pfft. Try this on for size, Kong.This week, we learned that Houston, essentially the birthplace of the space shuttle program, will not be given one of the four remaining shuttles. Two of the four cities receiving them are both deserving and appropriate: Washington D.C. (fo ... More >>
In honor of the 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's historic spaceflight, current space station astronaut and noted flute player Cady Coleman joined in an earth-orbit duet with Jethro Tull founder Ian Anderson.
It's funny watching new artists stumble over themselves trying to score coverage on popular blogs. Take the fast rising L.A. crew Odd Future, for example. Group captain Tyler, The Creator is almost as famous for his musical ingenuity as he is for his feud with revered rap blogs Nah Right and ... More >>
A quick search using Alfred yielded really helpful results.App: Alfred Platforms: Mac OSX Web site: Alfredapp.com Cost: Free (Power Pack add-on for about $20) Normally, this space is reserved for apps for the phone and the occasional Web site. This week, we're going to talk directly to M ... More >>
Expected to go to Florida for shuttle launch.Staffers for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, recuperating here after her Tucson shooting, say she still plans to attend the April 29 launch of her husband's space shuttle mission. But if she does, there will be no press interviews or public stat ... More >>
www.re35.netDigital photography had apparently been turned on its head last week.Looks like the Germans have us beat in soccer, old-school communism and April Fools' Day gags. On April 1, Rogge & Pott, a Hamburg, Germany-based design company, unveiled a jump-up-and-down-with-excitement produ ... More >>
Why can't we be friends, why can't we be friends.....Something interesting happened when social media started bearing down on us a few years back. We began to yearn for friends, and not the kind that you can call up on a Tuesday night for a bull session at the bar, or someone to watch your pu ... More >>
Rocks Off has been trying to come up with a "space rock" joke all day, but we can't, so we'll just say this is pretty cool. Today we got an email from Austin nonprofit Dart Music International with a link to the above video, which premiered during SXSW. It's astronaut (and musician) Cady Coleman ... More >>
The first man to ever leave the Earth and venture into space was a Russian cosmonaut named Yuri Gagarin, who, if he hadn't died at the young age of 34 in a plane crash he would be 77 years old today. Garagrin was launched into space on April 12, 1961, and orbited once around the planet in 108 ... More >>
A space shuttle on displayDiscovery has landed safely, ending its last mission of a long and fruitful career. It's expected to spend its retirement at the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum branch in Virginia. Two other space shuttles are retiring this year -- the Endeavour and Atlantis -- and 2 ... More >>
If someone woke Rocks Off up at 2:30 in the morning with a Big Head Todd & the Monsters song, even the band themselves, we might have a few choice words for them. But we suppose it's a little different when you're 220 miles above the Earth. That's what happened earlier today (way earlier tod ... More >>
NASA has put together an impressive montage of the last take-off of the space shuttle Discovery, using a wide range of cameras on the launch pad and the vehicle. There's about five minutes or so of preflight stuff here, so fast-forward if you prefer.
Sexting: The love song of the modern J. Alfred PrufrockIf you're the parent of a tween/teen who's dumb enough to sext, you've got enough problems. You don't need to add to them by being forced to attend a class on the whole thing. But according to a bill announced today by state Attorney Gen ... More >>
We have some great commenters here on Hair Balls, and it's time we paid some damn attention to them. So we'll be highlighting a Comment of the Day each morning, from the previous day's work. Maybe two comments, even. This will all be determined by a highly rigorous scientific formula involv ... More >>
Tomorrow is the 25th anniversary of the Challenger disaster, a news event that remains so vivid -- especially to Houstonians -- that most everyone can remember where they were when they learned of it or when they first saw a replay of that launch, embedded above. That day and its aftermath trigger ... More >>
Some rappers happen to be thoughtful, intelligent people. Every Monday (or thereabouts) that isn't a national holiday, Rocks Off will have some of them here discussing issues relevant to their culture. Photo illustration by John Seaborn GrayThis Week's Panel: Z-Ro, Slim Thug, hasHBrown, Kirk ... More >>
Who needs Classmates.com when we have Facebook?Social networking today is a foregone conclusion. Many of us wake up and check Twitter on our smart phones or pull up Facebook on our laptops. We surf YouTube videos in our spare time, find dates on Match.com and spend hours reading music, politi ... More >>
Photo by hirotomoThe iPhone really can take good photos if done correctly.Lots of you like snapping photos of your food while preparing it or after it is served. Most of the time, that means using a point-and-shoot digital camera or something nicer if you have it despite the weird looks of wa ... More >>
Less chance these days his mom's a teenagerSee what happens when you get rid of abstinence-only sex education? The birth rate for teen mothers is at its lowest point since 1940, when records were first kept, a federal study released today says. The report from the National Center for Healt ... More >>
The lunatic is in the grass, trying to see an eclipse through the cloudsIt's Lunar Eclipse Night!! Feel the excitement!! What? You're not on the edge of your seat? CHeck out this paragraph from ABC News: If the sky is clear, experts say the show might be extra spectacular, as the moon will ... More >>
Photo by Flickr user tomsunThese are not the Droid apps you are looking for.What's so great about the holidays? You never wear those horrendous sweaters from Grandma, all the money you get burns a hole in your pocket, and you forget to use all of your gift cards, which eventually expire. Don' ... More >>
Can somebody please tell us what the hell Firewire is? Nine years ago today - November 10, 2001 - Apple unveiled a new kind of MP3 player known as an iPod. About the size of a deck of cards, the device contained five gigabytes of memory, enough for about 1,000 songs, and cost $400. Four. Hundred. ... More >>
When NASA employee April Evans questioned animal experiments, her career fell apart.
Godspeed, DiscoveryThe space shuttle Discovery headed to the pad yesterday for its last trip into space.The 26-year-old craft has seen a lot in its career, some good, some bad, some odd. Here are five highlights:5. Being used as an old-folks' tour busIn 1998 Discovery took John Glenn up to space ... More >>
Horseless carriages that run on electricity?Houston has been getting a lot of attention for its seeming devotion to the electric car -- or at least its demonstrated devotion to issuing plans about using electric cars -- and now Ford is jumping on the bandwagon.The company announced today it would ... More >>
Your restaurant website probably sucksI have spent more than ten years consulting with companies in a wide range of industries on the design and development of their websites. It's a job that can be quite challenging because I often work with organizations who don't know very much about websi ... More >>
The heat is on in Texas and elsewhereAugust was the hottest month ever in Houston. A whopping 88.7 degrees, on average, topping previous records from both 1980 and 1962 by a full three-tenths of a degree.And while that doesn't sound like a lot to most folks, it's the kind of number that makes sci ... More >>
From a hospital bed in British Columbia, one man is fighting as hard as he can to open the doors for independent musicians to go viral on YouTube. Eleven years ago, Dana Durnford woke up in a hyperbaric chamber after a commercial diving accident, and has lived the rest of his life in a whee ... More >>
The Hates' Christian Arnheiter in the inaugural episode of Christine Dauzat's Tour H TownChristine Dauzat is not a filmmaker, television producer or musician. She's a realtor. Dauzat does, however, have a lot of musician friends. One day she woke up and asked herself, "How can I help those p ... More >>
Twinkle, twinkle...oh hell, that was just another plane
Each week, we put together a sampler plate of the most interesting links from both local and national food blogs. And after this Monday's nearly comprehensive list of all the Houston area food blogs, we now have even more blogs to spotlight each week! Know a blog we should be paying particular atten ... More >>
Cartoon does not reflect reality (most of the time).In a city as large as Houston and with as many culinary options as we're blessed with, it's no surprise that the food blogging community here is large and diverse. Say what you want about food bloggers: that we're arrogant, obtrusive know-i ... More >>
No broadband?!More than a quarter-million Texans have no access to broadband service, according to figures and a new map put out today by Texas Agricultural Commissioner Todd Staples.Two questions: First, how do these people live without viral videos like "BP Execs Spill Coffee"? Second, the Agri ... More >>
More than just cyberspace, the tweet life inspires people to make friends and adopt causes in person. It has a few problems, too.
Blast off with the crew of the Atlantis STS-125 at HMNS IMAX¨
Ten local sites that rock our world
Intrepid blogger Mike McGuff has an interview up with mayor Annise Parker on her -- and the city's -- use of social media in the past and the future."She reveals the steps her campaign took to effectively utilize social media and the blogosphere to win the votes," McGuff tells Hair Balls.No ... More >>
Earlier this month city officials announced they'll be buying more electric cars and also providing (temporarily) free charging stations for such vehicles downtown.The photo op seems to be paying off -- there seems to be the beginning of a small groundswell in the national media citing Houston as ... More >>
The new HISD credit recovery program matches students with a software program and a coach to get them fast-tracked to graduation.
Each week, we put together a sampler plate of the most interesting links from both local and national food blogs. Know a blog we should be paying particular attention to? Leave the address in the comments section below. Beyond Beltway 8: Although he shut down his previous food blog, Cory Crow (our ... More >>
Mad scientists, dinosaurs and candy - what's not to like?
Photo courtesy GHCVBEveryone knows that Houston is the smog-riddled energy capital of the world, so it was with a touch of irony that the annual Clean Air Through Energy Efficiency Conference awards were announced this afternoon in Houston.Attendees from across Texas and other states, munching on ... More >>
Whoever he is (was?), Scooby's iPod wasn't short on R. Kelly.So a couple of weeks ago, after three or four years of increasingly faltering service, Rocks Off's 30 GB iPod finally died. Completely. Out of sheer broke-assedness, we had held on to it for longer than most. By the end, its quirks and ... More >>