- Apparently, the Tully Monster is an anomalous fossil that no one xan quite figure out. Some scientists feel it’s an invertebrate, others see signs that it’s a vertebrate, and no one quite knows what the devil the thing is, besides an escape from the Plateaus of Leng. Recently, someone decided to use a synchrotron to study the fossil, and the results have left people more confused than ever.
- We’re becoming more aware that galaxies are grouped into structures that aren’t just globs of galaxies hanging out around a common center of gravity, but something more delicate and refined. Most interesting to me is the idea that rotation between distant galaxies is found to be synchronized, and distant quasars aligned with each other. It’s like God was consulting John C. Wright.
- Black holes usually eat things, but sometimes the whims of gravity wind up chucking things away from the black hole and ridiculous speeds. We recently spotted a star on an exit trajectory from the galaxy, chucked out by Sagittarius A*, the black hole at the center of the Milky Way at some absurd speed. And space being what it is, even moving as fast as it is, we’re still looking at something like 100 million years before it leaves the galaxy.
- Caroline Furlong, prompted by a comment from the illustrious Timothy Zahn, has a great discussion on character deaths in fiction and whether they’re necessary. Anyone that knows me knows how I feel about the Macross franchise, but one aspect of it is becoming a bit trite: character deaths. The original series boldly killed an ace pilot, in a way that was stupid but in character for him, and it acted as a catalyst for the protagonist’s growth. Sequels have seen other ace pilots die, sometimes satisfyingly, sometimes unsatsifyingly, but in the the most recent installment, it felt just… like a box to be ticked off. Because it is; it’s not about the horrors of war, or character growth; it was just a Macross thing. And Macross, when it’s at its best, is being bonkers and creative, not ticking off boxes.