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Update, 9:53 p.m.: NASA has responded to questions about its forecast and differences with NOAA. Scroll down to the bottom of this post. Meanwhile, NOAA has produced an excellent video about this event - click here to view.
From 12:31 p.m.: A wave of plasma stoked by an X-class solar flare, the most intense type, is headed towards Earth. This blast of charged particles, known as a coronal mass ejection (CME), is forecast to ignite a geomagnetic storm on Earth over the weekend. NOAA predicts it will be minor, maybe moderate. NASA says it will be moderate to severe.
I ask: which intensity will it be and why aren’t these two science agencies on the same page?
The intensity of the inbound CME matters.
If NOAA’s right, and the ensuing geomagnetic storm is minor, it’s no big deal. It means the high latitudes could be treated to some brilliant auroras over the weekend with few, if any, negative effects on earth-orbiting satellites or the power grid.
On the other hand, if NASA’s right, and the geomagnetic storm is strong to severe, Earth-orbiting satellites could get disoriented and the electrical grid,according to NOAA, could experience “widespread voltage control problems” among other issues. Aurora could be seen as far south as Alabama and northern California.
Visa and Mastercard make $7.25bn fees dispute settlement
Credit card companies Visa and Mastercard and major US banks have agreed to a $7.25bn (£4.65bn) settlement to retailers over card fees.
The case, which has been going on for seven years, is over firms colluding to fix the fees that stores pay to process credit and debt card payments.
The settlement is thought to be the largest of its kind in US history.
It involves a $6bn payment to stores and an agreement to reduce swipe fees for eight months, valued at $1.2bn.
An additional $525 million has been set aside to pay to the stores which sued individually, including grocery chains Kroger and Safeway and the Rite Aid pharmacy chain.
Yahoo News: Opinion News Headlines “Get the latest opinion news headlines from Yahoo News. Find breaking opinion news, including analysis and opinion on top opinion stories, photos and more.”
Drinking fresh milk in the classical world was considered a luxury because milk was so difficult to preserve. – Provided by RandomHistory.com
US charges two with trying to smuggle nuclear-related equipment to Iran
One of those charged is Iranian; the other, Chinese. An undercover operation leading up to the indictment offered US officials insight into secret efforts in Iran to obtain nuclear capability.
An Iranian businessman and a Chinese importer have been charged in a seven-count federal indictment with conspiring to smuggle nuclear-related equipment from the US to Iran, federal officials announced on Friday.
Parviz Khaki of Iran and Zongcheng Yi of Guangzhou, China, are accused of plotting to evade the US trade embargo of Iran and other export controls by shipping regulated items to Hong Kong before they were reshipped to Iran.
The equipment and materials apparently sought by Mr. Khaki could be used to construct, operate, and maintain gas centrifuges to enrich uranium. Khaki also allegedly sought radioactive materials for shipment to Iran.
The charges were returned by a federal grand jury in Washington, D.C.
Noise Pollution Killing Baby Birds
Researchers believe that noise could be to blame, at least in part, for the sharp decline of the UK’s house sparrow population over the past four decades. There are a number of reasons why this might be. The leading hypothesis is that noise affects the selection of a mate, perhaps by drowning out mating calls. Another theory, supported by the observation that sparrows nesting in noisy areas are less effective at feeding their chicks, suggests that urban noise makes it difficult for adult birds to hear the hunger calls of their offspring and negatively affects the way the chicks are fed, thereby limiting their chances of survival.
Playing with bacon….
Begging for boobs: Chrissy, 37, believes her ‘original’ idea standing on a busy street corner will help her raise $5,058 for breast implants
Chrissy, from Rittman, Ohio, has been standing on the corner of Manchester Road and Carnegie Avenue in Akron near a blue motorbike with her sign and bodyguard.
She said: ‘I see people panhandling (begging) everyday, so why not panhandle for boobs.
‘It’s original. I’ve never seen anybody else do it.’
No Joke: Al-Qaeda Operative Has Fellow Jihadis Sodomize Him To Widen His Anus So Suicide Bomb Can Be Inserted…
What the . . . . ?
Not only did the original “underwear bomber” Abdullah Hassan al-Asiri hide explosives in his rectum to assassinate Saudi Prince Muhammad bin Nayef — they met in 2009 after the 22-year-old holy warrior “feigned repentance for his jihadi views” — but al-Asiri apparently had fellow jihadis repeatedly sodomize him to “widen” his anus in order to accommodate the explosives — all in accordance with the fatwas [religious edicts] of Islamic clerics.
A 2010 Arabic news video that is making the rounds on the Internet gives the details. Apparently a cleric, one Abu al-Dema al-Qasab, informedjihadis of an “innovative and unprecedented way to execute martyrdom operations: place explosive capsules in your anus. However, to undertake this jihadi approach you must agree to be sodomized for a while to widen your anus so it can hold the explosives.”
The best looking bike I have seen!
The gegenschein is an oval patch of faint light directly opposite the sun in the night sky. It is so faint that it can only be seen in the absence of moonlight and is lost in the light of the Milky Way except in the spring and fall. It is thought to be caused by sunlight reflecting off dust particles in space that may be part of Earth’s tail of dust and gas. Danish astronomer Theodor Brorsen published an account of the phenomenon in 1854, about 50 years after it was observed and named by whom?
Can you spot the slut in this picture?
OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The voter registration form arrived in the mail last month with some key information already filled in: Rosie Charlston’s name was complete, as was her Seattle address.
Problem is, Rosie was a black lab who died in 1998.
A group called the Voter Participation Center has touted the distribution of some 5 million registration forms in recent weeks, targeting Democratic-leaning voting blocs such as unmarried women, blacks, Latinos and young adults.
But residents and election administrators around the country also have reported a series of bizarre and questionable mailings addressed to animals, dead people, non-citizens and people already registered to vote.
Brenda Charlston wasn’t the only person to get documents for her pet: A Virginia man said similar documents arrived for his dead dog, Mozart, while a woman in the state got forms for her cat, Scampers.
“On a serious note, I think it’s tampering with our voting system,” Charlston said. “They’re fishing for votes: That’s how I view it.”
The Storming of the Bastille (This day in 1789)
The Bastille was a 14th-century fortress and a notorious state prison in Paris. In 1789, an angry mob stormed the prison, freeing the political prisoners held in the edifice that had come to symbolize the French monarchy’s oppression of the people. The assault launched the French Revolution. Although the building itself was razed a year later, the Bastille became a symbol of French independence, and July 14th became a national holiday. How many prisoners were in the Bastille when it was stormed?