WBEZ | Mars http://www.wbez.org/tags/mars Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Chicago has a 'Project Batman' and it's hiring http://www.wbez.org/blogs/charlie-meyerson/2013-02/chicago-has-project-batman-and-its-hiring-105799 <p><p><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3wMpHZs0F7k&amp;feature=youtu.be&amp;t=5m5s" target="_blank"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Screen%20shot%202013-02-27%20at%201.24.24%20PM.png" style="float: right; height: 182px; width: 300px;" title="City of Chicago Director of Analytics Tom Schenk Jr." /></a></p><p><strong>YEAH, CHICAGO HAS A &#39;PROJECT BATMAN.&#39;</strong>&nbsp;Chicago&#39;s analytics director, <strong>Tom Schenk Jr. </strong>&mdash; who kinda looks like Bruce Wayne, doesn&#39;t he? &mdash; tells a gathering of journalists, programmers and government leaders&nbsp;<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3wMpHZs0F7k&amp;feature=youtu.be&amp;t=5m5s" target="_blank">the city&#39;s working with the University of Illinois at Chicago to visualize crime data</a>&nbsp;in a 3-D&nbsp;<a href="http://techland.time.com/2013/02/25/cave2-not-a-star-trek-holodeck-yet-but-getting-closer/" target="_blank">virtual reality &quot;cave.&quot;</a><br />* P.S.&nbsp;<a href="https://chicago.taleo.net/careersection/100/joblist.ftl" target="_blank">They&#39;re hiring</a>. (The &quot;Project Manager - DoIT&quot; job.)</p><p><strong>&#39;THE NRA WANTS TO KEEP GUN RECORDS SECRET FROM EVERYONE EXCEPT THE NRA.&#39; </strong>You know&nbsp;those public gun ownership records that have brought shame and <a href="http://jimromenesko.com/2013/02/26/editor-who-made-request-resigns/" target="_blank">death threats</a>&nbsp;to journalists who&#39;ve dared even just to express interest in them? The records the National Rifle Association contends shouldn&#39;t be public because they put gun owners &quot;at risk to criminals who may target their home to steal firearms&quot;? Funny thing: Gun-rights groups, including the NRA, have for years been <a href="http://gawker.com/5987293/the-nra-wants-to-keep-gun-records-secret-from-everyone-except-the-nra">diving into those records for fundraising and recruiting efforts</a>, according to&nbsp;<em>Gawker</em>.<br />* For NYC&#39;s Bloomberg, election that nominated Robin Kelly for Congress was mainly about testing&nbsp;<a href="http://www.buzzfeed.com/cjlotz/bloombergs-pac-reveals-strategy-for-making-a-chicago-area-ra" target="_blank">political strategy to defang the NRA</a>.<br />* ... And for Republicans in that race? Guy who did almost <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/ct-met-2nd-district-republican-nominee-20130228,0,3550456.story" target="_blank">20 years for burglaries, armed robberies and aggravated battery</a>.<br />* <em>Chicago Magazine</em>&#39;s Carol Felsenthal: &quot;<a href="http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/Felsenthal-Files/February-2013/Billionaire-Mayor-Bloomberg-Buys-Illinois-2nd-District-Congressional-Seat/" target="_blank">Bloomberg could be a key funder of a Rahm run for the presidency</a>.&quot;<br />* &quot;Gun rights&quot; Democrats may <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2013/02/27/liberals-to-dems-no-more-cozying-up-to-the-nra/" target="_blank">pay a price for coziness with NRA</a>.<br />* Downstate Republican Illinois representative compares gun control to emasculation: &quot;<a href="http://www.rrstar.com/blogs/kevinhaas/x711925952/Rep-Jim-Sacia-compares-gun-control-to-castration" target="_blank">You folks in Chicago want me to get castrated because your families are having too many kids</a>.&quot;</p><hr /><p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:20px;"><span style="font-family: georgia, serif;"><span style="color:#a52a2a;"><em>Friday: The next WBEZ Meyerson News Quiz.&nbsp;</em></span><a href="http://www.wbez.org/tags/news-quiz" target="_blank"><span style="color:#a52a2a;">Take last week&#39;s now</span></a><span style="color:#a52a2a;">.</span></span></span></p><hr /><p><strong>SHOULD NPR SWEAR OFF GOVERNMENT CASH? </strong>National Public Radio&#39;s former CEO says <a href="http://www.newsmax.com/US/Ken-Stern-NPR-funding/2013/02/27/id/492286" target="_blank">walking away from federal cash</a> would lay to rest questions about the organization&#39;s credibility. He says public radio &quot;would do better&quot; without public financing.<br />* <a href="http://www.npr.org/2013/02/27/173056290/5-4-3-2-1-we-have-sequestration" target="_blank">Countdown to sequestration</a> just latest of many.</p><p><strong><a href="http://www.theverge.com/2013/2/27/4038280/star-trek-tng-in-theatres-best-of-both-worlds-april-25" target="_blank"><img alt="&quot;Star Trek&quot;: &quot;The Best of Both Worlds&quot;" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-DqQygKOCVUs/TlkNyU0uBCI/AAAAAAAAADQ/DRYhmMEP8Uw/s1600/The+Best+of+Both+Worlds.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 229px; float: right;" /></a>RESISTANCE IS FUTILE.&nbsp;</strong>What some fans consider the best two &quot;Star Trek&quot; episodes ever -- &quot;The Best of Both Worlds&quot; (a.ka. <strong>Capt. Picard goes Borg</strong>) -- <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2013/2/27/4038280/star-trek-tng-in-theatres-best-of-both-worlds-april-25" target="_blank">will be shown, newly remastered for Blu-ray, as a single movie on the big screen</a>, one night only, April 25.<br />* <a href="http://www.fathomevents.com/?utm_source=Star_Trek_TNG3_Press_Release&amp;utm_medium=PR&amp;utm_campaign=Star_Trek_TNG3_Fathom_Event_Page#!star-trek-best-of-both-worlds/more-info/theaters" target="_blank">22 Illinois theaters</a> on list of those screening the episodes.</p><p><b>UNRELATED DEVELOPMENTS.</b><br />* The departing <a href="http://www.newser.com/story/163589/popes-living-arrangements-are-a-little-er-weird.html" target="_blank">Pope Benedict&#39;s future living arrangements</a> are&nbsp;raising eyebrows&nbsp;around the world.<br />* Nonprofit foundation seeking couple for&nbsp;<a href="http://www.aljazeera.com/news/americas/2013/02/201322723556589753.html" target="_blank">501-day roundtrip mission to Mars</a>.</p><hr /><p><em><strong>ANNOUNCEMENTS.</strong></em><br /><em>* Suggestions for this blog?&nbsp;<a href="mailto:cmeyerson@wbez.org?subject=Things%20and%20stuff">Email anytime</a>.<br />* Get this blog by email, free. <a href="http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=feedburner/AELk&amp;amp;loc=en_US" target="_blank">Sign up here</a>.</em><br /><em>* Follow us on Twitter:&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/wbez" target="_blank">@WBEZ</a>&nbsp;and&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/meyerson" target="_blank">@Meyerson</a>.</em></p></p> Thu, 28 Feb 2013 05:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/charlie-meyerson/2013-02/chicago-has-project-batman-and-its-hiring-105799 New insight into the origins of Mars http://www.wbez.org/blog/clever-apes/2011-05-25/new-insight-origins-mars-87040 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-May/2011-05-25/Inner planets.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="From left to right, the relative sizes of Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. " class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-May/2011-05-25/Inner planets.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 261px;" title="From left to right, the relative sizes of Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. "></p><p>Scientists have delivered us another origin story today: about the formation of the planet Mars. New research from a Chicago scientist suggests the red planet developed in just a fraction of the time it took Earth, and effectively had its growth stunted.</p><p>Nicolas Dauphas says Mars is actually a planet embryo, in a state of arrested development. The University of Chicago professor says planets like Earth and Venus formed as several embryos collided and fused. Mars, though, grew rapidly from one original hunk of material.</p><p>“We think it took approximately 50 million years to grow a planet like Earth,” said Dapuhas. “And the result of our study shows that Mars grew in only two million years.”</p><p>The explanation might account for Mars’ small size – about one-tenth the mass of Earth.</p><p>Dauphas studied Martian meteorites and, by testing for certain isotopes, was able to essentially date when Mars’ core separated from its outer layers. His findings suggest that scientists can look to Mars to better understand the building blocks of Earth. The results are out today in the journal, Nature.</p><p>Meanwhile, NASA today announced that it has officially given up on the tough little Martian rover, Spirit. The high-tech dune-buggy-meets-Johnny-Five roamed Mars’s surface for six years, far longer than its designers ever imagined. In the process, it sent back stunning photos and plenty of data that scientists will be gnawing on for years.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="The rover Spirit delivered stunning photos of the Martian surface. (NASA)" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-May/2011-05-25/spirit photo.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 229px;" title="The rover Spirit delivered stunning photos of the Martian surface. (NASA)"></p><p>NASA is still in touch with Spirit’s sibling, Opportunity. Meanwhile, they’re also toiling away on the next Mars rover, Curiosity, set to launch later this year. As Dave Chapelle put it, MARS, um, folks.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/iRygA_sM6lM" width="480"></iframe></p></p> Wed, 25 May 2011 20:57:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/clever-apes/2011-05-25/new-insight-origins-mars-87040 Going to Mars...Cheese Castle, that is http://www.wbez.org/blog/steve-dolinsky/2011-05-09/going-marscheese-castle-86086 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-May/2011-05-08/cheesecastle.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="caption" height="336" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-May/2011-05-04/4644484638_71a63f3beb.jpg" title="glorious curds and whey, from the Mars Cheese Castle" width="365"></p><p>Now that&nbsp;the warmer weather is finally here, it's about that time of year when planning for summer vacations and weekend getaways begins. If you're a Chicagoan, chances are if you've ever made your way to Lake Geneva, the Dells or anywhere else in&nbsp;Wisconsin,&nbsp;you've passed the Mars Cheese Castle. It may seem a little touristy (and forgive the pun, but also a little cheesy), yet it now claims snazzier digs in a renovated building that literally looks like a castle; it's worth a visit.</p><div>The obvious choice is the cheese, but Mars offers much more than the traditional aged cheddar. The fruit-filled cheeses are both tart and sweet. Crumbly white cheddar is filled with apricot and ginger, cranberry, blueberry or cinnamon apple. The bakery is serving up fresh coffee cakes, cookies and a sliced cheesy bread. Mars is also a good place to stock up&nbsp;on beer from the New Glarus brewery. If you've never sampled the craft beer, their famous Spotted Cow is a great place to start.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>If you're stopping for a bite to eat, the menu is limited, but there are a few standouts. The classic ham and cheese is simple but done right with a tender shaved ham and your choice of melted cheese. For something different, yet still very Sconny, the cheddar-bacon-jalapeño bratwurst is an extremely flavorful sandwich. It's crispy on the outside and bursting with juices upon the first bite. Like all sandwiches, it comes with a choice of chips or two different types of homemade potato salad. The problem with stocking up here on a road trip is that not all of the snacks will end up making their way home. Intermittent nibbling is expected.</div></p> Mon, 09 May 2011 11:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/steve-dolinsky/2011-05-09/going-marscheese-castle-86086