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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

High Speed Photos

High Speed Photography is the science of taking pictures of very fast phenomena. In 1948, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) defined high-speed photography as any set of photographs captured by a camera capable of 128 frames per second or greater, and of at least three consecutive frames. High speed photography can be considered to be the opposite of time-lapse photography.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The House of Bones - Casa Batllo

One of the most photographed buildings you could possibly find in Barcelona is that of Casa Batllo, also known as the ‘House of Yawns’.

A more recent, more macabre name for this stunning Gaudi masterpiece is that of the ‘House of Bones’. Situated near to its cousin, Casa Mila (or La Pedrera), upon the Passeig de Gracia, Casa Batllo stands out from the other buildings in that its walls are in an elaborately decorated order with Gaudi’s characteristic absence of straight lines. The Casa Batllo’s disconcerting nickname (House of Bones) is owed to the ‘skeletal’ look of the columns of the building’s gallery and not because there are any skeletons to be found in the closet.

Restored and remodeled by the Spanish modernist architect Antoni Gaudi in the years 1905–1907, Casa Batllo is now one the most overlooked buildings by the tourists who visit Barcelona. Although Casa Batllo is a museum now, Gaudi designed it for for a wealthy Barcelona Aristocrat.

Casa Batllo’s roof has been compared to a reptilian creature, the backbone of a gigantic dinosaur, the dragon killed by St. George (Sant Jordi being the patron saint of Catalan).

It seems that the goal of the designer was to avoid straight lines completely. Much of the facade is decorated with a mosaic made of broken ceramic tiles that starts in shades of golden orange moving into greenish blues.

From the balconies resembling the bones of animals to the scale like surface of the front facade, the building is a tour de force of an artist reaching the peak of his powers. At night the floodlit facade has an iridescence like the scales of a fish. This polychromic finish is known as trencadís.

The enlarged windows on the first floor gave it another nickname, ‘House of Yawns’.

World's Most Exotic Beaches

Volcanic black sand of Punalu in Hawaii

Te green sand of Papakolea also have volcanic origins.

The sand of Haims, Australia is the whitest sand in the world. It's even written in the Guinness Book of Records.

Multicolored sand in California

Red sand on Maui

Cube Brain Teaser Puzzle

Three Gorges Dam - The Biggest Dam in the World

Three Gorges Dam, in Hubei Province, China, will be the world's largest dam and largest concrete structure and create the largest lake. The dam will be built across the 3 Gorges section of the Yangtze River. It will be a 610-foot high wall running about 1.3 miles from bank to bank. Requiring 12 years and tens of thousands of workers to complete, the dam will cost $29 billion, and will create a 370 mile long lake, a distance equal to nearly half the length of California, that will be visible from Earth orbit.