Tornado Quest Science Links And Much More For July 15 – 22, 2015

If it’s sizzling hot with summer heat where you are, I hope you’ve been able to keep your cool. For much of North America, a ridge of high pressure (often referred to colloquially by storm chasers as the “death ridge”) has dominated much of the mid-summer weather. Temperatures in the mid to upper 90F combined with dew points in the 70’s has created a torrid sauna that only the most staunch fans of summer can love. For those (like yours truly) who prefer a more temperate summer, hang tight. In a matter of week’s the heat will pass swiftly and the seasons will change.

This week’s post, for the sake of dealing with a myriad of time constraints, will be rather brief. In fact, I may experiment with a more concise format for a period of time. Having had several in-depth conversations on the social psychology behind social media with people who, in a professional capacity, are engaged public relations has been very enlightening. In general, most people like you and me prefer to digest as much information in shorter segments rather than long-winded accounts. Having said that, let’s not waste any more time.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

As I explained in this week’s introduction, much evidence shows that brevity is key in social media success…i.e. the ideal Twitter tweet is between 70-100 characters.

A startling look at the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s fourth annual “Who Has Your Back” report on the tech sector’s customer privacy practices. Though this report is from May, 2014, all indications are that little (if anything has) changed.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

SciStarter and NASA are enlisting citizen scientists for a nationwide research project that will examine water availability and soil moisture conditions.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

NASA has released a new photograph of our humble home that is true to its description. Epic!

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

The biggest news this week in weather and climate was NOAA’s latest State Of The Climate Report. The bottom line; 2014 was the warmest year on record for planet Earth.

The latest US Drought Monitor showed a great deal of improvement…except, of course, for the drought plagued western states. The newest report will be issued tomorrow and, in spite of recent California rains, will likely show little change.

In spite of a recent rebound, the dramatic loss of Arctic sea ice continues.

Are heat advisories and/or excessive heat warnings “over-the-top hype” or are they beneficial to the public? Personally, I believe it’s the latter, but many strongly disagree.

Last but definitely not least is a “shout out” to “This Week In Science” (TWIS) with Kirsten Sanford, PhD, Justin Jackson, and Blair Bazdarich providing the web’s most entertaining and informative look into a wide spectrum of science topics. If you’ve not seen an episode, you should check it out.

That’s a wrap for this week’s post! I’d like to welcome my new followers…glad you’re along for the fun. Stick around folks, there are some very cool things in the works for Tornado Quest.

Cheers!

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