It has taken a suspiciously long time before anyone attempted to emulate the success of Demon’s Souls and its offspring the Dark Souls series. Only two years ago did Lords of the Fallen take a somewhat random stab at it (and died). From Software’s own Bloodborne was so similar that it spontaneously generated the “Soulsborne” genre name and wasn’t even regarded as a competitor. Maybe it’s simply too difficult a task to fill From’s shoes. Would be kind of poetic, wouldn’t it?
It won’t help us reverse the effects of global warming fast enough, but there is a way to lock CO2 into a more permanent form.
At Iceland’s Hellisheidi Power Plant, Lamont hydrologist Martin Stute, Adjunct Senior Research Scientist Juerg Matter, and colleagues tried something different. They used CO2 captured at the power plant, and mixed it with water and hydrogen sulfide, creating soda-like carbonation, then injected the mixture into porous basalt rocks 400 to 800 meters underground. Basalt, which is created as lava cools, contains calcium, iron, and magnesium, which react naturally with CO2 to form solid carbonate minerals. Within two years, 95 percent of the injected CO2 had turned to mineral – far faster than the 8–12 years originally expected.
A “cool” technique, but it might take a while for it to be adopted on a grand scale.
In 2017 we can use all the good omens we can get…
“Almost 30 years ago Terry Pratchett and I wrote the funniest novel we could about the end of the world, populated with angels and demons, not to mention an 11 year-old Antichrist, witch-finders and the four horsepeople of the Apocalypse. It became many people’s favourite book. Three decades later, it’s going to make it to the screen. I can’t think of anyone we’d rather make it with than BBC Studios, and I just wish Sir Terry was alive to see it.”
In case melting poles and intensifying weather within the confines of our own planet wasn’t worrying enough, we also need to keep track of the Sun. Because it might just fire off some harsh “space weather”.
A solar storm, though, could be responsible for an off-the-charts economic disaster. Global Positioning Systems, satellite services and electronic communication systems are all at risk from the solar flares known as coronal mass ejections.
But it’s national power grids that are seen as the most vulnerable earthbound assets, with a risk that power surges will overload transformers which are both expensive and difficult to replace. Changes in the earth’s magnetic field interfere with electrical currents and blow large high-voltage transformers, which take at least five months to build and are bulky to transport.
The Sun giveth, the Sun taketh away. You’d think we’ve come incredibly far as a species, only to still be at the mercy of our original faith-inspiring celestial body.
It’s still insane to realise that there was a time that some people thought that a form of improvisation theatre combined with some game rules, dice, pens and paper made for effective Satanic rituals with dramatic results.
But the cartoonist Jack Chick saw only evil in Dungeons & Dragons. Chick, a publisher of evangelical Christian comics, penned a tract called “Dark Dungeons” that portrayed D&D as a game of Satanism and witchcraft. In Chick’s story, a witchy (and pretty sexy) Dungeon Master brainwashes her innocent younger players, recruiting them into a coven and teaching them to cast spells on their parents. One player, Marcie, becomes so upset when her D&D character dies that she commits suicide.