Tag Archives: brown

Archaeologist uncover hidden Mayan temple, deep in the jungle, to find terrifying giant masks

Does this sound like an Indiana Jones adventure or what!

Two archaeologists deep in the jungles of Guatemala are searching the lost empire of El Zotz, an ancient Maya city-state. First, they discover Diablo’s Pyramid, a 45-foot tall royal palace that is 1600 years old.

Then, they spot another building but it’s buried deep in the jungle. Two years later they have it uncovered (ok, that is not-so adventurous but realistic archaeological work), and find beyond the overgrowth some devilish faces, from the National Geographic article:

The sides of the temple are decorated with 5-foot-tall stucco masks showing the face of the sun god changing as he traverses the sky over the course of a day.

One mask is sharklike, likely a reference to the sun rising from the Caribbean in the east, Houston said.

The noonday sun is depicted as an ancient being with crossed eyes who drank blood, and a final series of masks resemble the local jaguars, which awake from their jungle slumbers at dusk.

 

Screenshots:

Imagine making your way through the jungle to find this entrance…

 

To find this guy staring down at you!

 

The Mayans sure were fascinated with power, death, and the sun.

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Brown widow spiders aggressively populating Southern California – pushing aside black widows

A poisonous spider is aggressively colonizing Southern California.

Panic.

Now, take a deep breath: The spread of brown widows could actually be good thing.

Newly released research suggests nonnative brown widows are pushing out more dangerous (and native) western black widows. Most of the time, brown widows have a bite similar to that of common household spiders, producing only a red mark and slight pain, according to the Center for Invasive Species Research at UC Riverside.

“The most common thing, anecdotally, that homeowners are saying is, ‘I used to have 3 or 4 black widows and now I have 10 to 15 brown widows,’” said Richard Vetter, a retired researcher at UC Riverside and lead author of a recent study about the interaction between the arachnids.

 

Learn more: U-T San Diego - Brown widows crawl across SoCal sprawl

 

 

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California launches a statewide network of charging stations for electric vehicles

Governor Brown joined with the California Public Utilities Commission today to announce a $120 million dollar settlement with NRG Energy Inc. that will fund the construction of a statewide network of charging stations for zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs), including at least 200 public fast-charging stations and another 10,000 plug-in units at 1,000 locations across the state. The settlement stems from California’s energy crisis.

The network of charging stations funded by the settlement will be installed in the San Francisco Bay Area, the San Joaquin Valley, the Los Angeles Basin and San Diego County.

“Through the settlement, EVs will become a viable transportation option for many Californians who do not have the option to have a charging station at their residence.”

The Executive Order issued today by the Governor sets the following targets:

  • By 2015, all major cities in California will have adequate infrastructure and be “zero-emission vehicle ready”;
  • By 2020, adequate infrastructure to support 1 million zero-emission vehicles in California;
  • By 2025, there will be 1.5 million zero-emission vehicles on the road in California; and
  • By 2050, virtually all personal transportation in the State will be based on zero-emission vehicles.

via ca.gov

 

Just one question, not addressed in the announcement, is charging at the stations free?

What will be the cost for a full charge?

 

// photos via NCDOT Comms and gwyst

Happy New Year – 760 new laws for California – gays in textbooks, fruity drinks, and maternity leave

I must be a wonk because I find all these new laws fascinating. From a bill that allows infused drinks to another that requires schools to include the contributions of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people in history lessons.

For the record, an infused drink is not a Mojito where mint is added when the drink is made. Instead the fruit is added to the alcohol and then sits on the shelf, infusing, and served at some later point.

There are also laws that ban selling puppies on the street and another allowing near unlimited clean needles for drug users. Beer with caffeine is banned and so is using a credit check during the hiring process. There is also a new permit that allows wine to be sold online and some extra money for investigating a San Diego to Los Angeles high-speed rail.

It feels like all the budget cuts from Governor Brown are rearranging everything, hopefully saving some money and maybe, just maybe improving our lives.

Here are a few more and a link at bottom for the full list.

Saving parks: allows nonprofits to take over the operation of state parks that otherwise would be closed because of budget problems.

Recycling: establishes as state policy that 75% of solid waste should be diverted from landfills to recycling and other processes by 2020.

Presidential primary: moves the state’s presidential primary election from February to June and consolidates it with the statewide primary election to save $100 million.

Iran: mandates that the state’s pension boards divest their funds from companies that are part of the defense or nuclear industries in Iran.

Autism: requires health insurers to include coverage for autism.

Foster care: allows foster care for eligible youths to extend beyond age 18, up to age 21, when the Legislature provides the money. Another measure requires California State University campuses and community colleges to give foster youths priority to enroll in classes.

Maternity leave: requires employers to maintain and pay for health coverage while women are on maternity leave.

Marijuana: gives cities and counties clearer authority to regulate the location and operation of medical marijuana dispensaries. Another law creates new penalties for the possession of synthetic cannabis products, which have been sold in convenience stores and tobacco shops.

Lying politicians: forces elected officials to forfeit office if convicted of falsely claiming they have been awarded military decorations.

Dream Act: The portion of the California Dream Act taking effect this year makes illegal immigrants accepted at California public universities and community colleges eligible for privately funded scholarships administered by the schools.

view the full list at LA Times