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January 11, 2009

Abandoned Russian Polar Nuclear Lighthouses — File under 'End of Days'

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From englishrussia.com:
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Abandoned Russian Polar Nuclear Lighthouses

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The Russian northern coast is a vast territory thousand of miles long, and all this coastline is inside the Polar Circle.

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Long polar winters mean no daylight at all, instead one day changes another without any sign of the sun rising above the horizon. There is only polar night for 100 days a year.

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Across this northern coast there was always a short way for cargo boats to travel from the eastern part of Russia to the western.

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Now this trip can be made fairly easily with the all the satellite navigation equipment like GPS and others, but during the Soviet Era they had none of this.

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So, the Communist Party of the Soviet Union decided to build a chain of lighthouses to guide ships finding their way in the dark polar night across the uninhabited northern shores of the Soviet Russian Empire.

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So it has been done and a series of such lighthouses has been erected. They had to be fully autonomous, because they were situated hundreds and hundreds of miles away from any populated areas.

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After reviewing different ideas on how to make them work for years without service and any external power supply, Soviet engineers decided to implement atomic energy to power up those structures.

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So, special lightweight small atomic reactors were produced in limited series to be delivered to the Polar Circle lands and to be installed on the lighthouses.

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Those small reactors could work in the independent mode for years and didn’t require any human interference, so it was very handy in the situation like this. It was a kind of robot-lighthouse which counted itself the time of the year and the length of the daylight, turned on its lights when it was needed and sent radio signals to near by ships to warn them on their journey. It all looks like ran out the sci-fi book pages, but so they were.

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Then, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the unattended atomic lighthouses did their job for some time, but after some time they collapsed too. Mostly as a result of the hunt for the metals like copper and other stuff which were performed by the looters.

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They didn’t care or maybe even didn’t know the meaning of the “Radioactive Danger” sign and ignored them, breaking in and destroying the equipment.

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It sounds creepy but they broke into the reactors too causing all the structures to become radioactively polluted.

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Those photos are from the trip to the one of such structures, the most close to the populated areas of the Russian Far East.

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Now, there are signs “RADIOACTIVITY” written with big white letters on the approaching paths to the structure but they don’t stop the abandoned exotics lovers.
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Photos by kamatoz.

[via williamgibsonbooks.com]

January 11, 2009 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Sudoku without pencils

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From the website:

    Sudoku Solitaire

    You don't need to waste paper, sharpen pencils or erase with our Sudoku Solitaire board game.

    Use 40 game cards (at 4 skill levels) to place the tiles.

    20 Kakuro games included.

$4.99.

January 11, 2009 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'The Most Dangerous Game' – by Richard Connell

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His 1924 story won that year's O. Henry Memorial Award.

Long (8,426 words) story short: It's about a shipwrecked man who finds himself on an island with a man who hunts humans.

$5.99.

Too much?

OK, no problema.

How about free?

Is free good for you?

Right here, then.

January 11, 2009 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Choplery — '100% bamboo flatware and chopsticks in one'

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From design GO!

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in Brooklyn, New York.

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[via Coroflot and Milena]

January 11, 2009 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

MorphWorld: SpaceSleeper wearable pillow into one of those thingies boxers wear on their heads in the gym

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I never knew its name until this post forced me to find out: headgear.

From Boxing Depot: "Headgear does not prevent concussions well. You still need to keep your hands up. You can get knocked out while wearing headgear. Boxing headgear does protect from cuts, scrapes, reduces swelling and prevents skin damage. Headgear also does a great job of preventing cauliflower ear."

Sold.

"In this corner, wearing black trunks, from the planet Narcolepsy, the contender, SpaceSleeper."

Interestingly, Everlast's iteration (below)

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costs about the same ($39.99) as the SpaceSleeper.

I wonder what it would be like to sleep in boxing headgear.

I suppose you could ask somebody who's been knocked out wearing it, huh?

January 11, 2009 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Portable Cobblestone Acupressure Mat

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That's different.

From websites:

    Portable Cobblestone Walkway

    Taking a daily barefoot walk on this Cobblestone Walkway acupressure mat has been clinically proven to lower blood pressure, improve balance and promote better overall health.

    Cobblestone walking, used in China for thousands of years, is an ancient health-enhancing exercise that applies pressure from the body's own weight to the reflex points of the foot.

    The simulated cobblestone walking surface is lightweight and rolls up for easy transportation and storage.

    16" x 72".

$35.65.

January 11, 2009 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Public service announcement directed at my big fat Greek audience

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No, not fat in that way.

Get over yourself already.

But I digress.

OK, everyone paying atttention?

Good.

Read the notice above, which appeared last week in the form of an eighth of a page ad in USA Today.

Long story short: You have until February 28, 2009 to submit your claim.

January 11, 2009 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Ponytail Headband

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Hard on the heels of the Ponytail Hat comes this variation on a theme.

Red, Blue, Lime or Gray.

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Bonus: Price break from the original $22.95 to $9.99.

January 11, 2009 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

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