Friday, August 17, 2012

5 Things We Might Not Know About Our Universe

The universe is an awfully big and mysterious place. Humans have been working to pick apart it's intricacies for thousands of years now, and we are only just beginning to understand some of the more basic pieces of the galactic puzzle. It seems that with every new piece of knowledge that we gain, we open up a number of new questions for research. The following is a list of 5 things that we still might not know about our universe.
1. How did the universe begin?
 There are a number of theories ranging from the big bang all the way to the idea that a supreme being built the universe from a vast blank. Although many theories have emerged, there is no definitive answer to the question of how the universe began. Scientists are developing powerful telescopes in an effort to effectively see in to the past for clues that can answer this question.
2. What is dark matter and dark energy?
Our universe is made up of roughly 95% dark matter and dark energy. What this means is that the matter that we, as humans, can see, touch, smell, et cetera, is largely the minority of matter and energy in the universe. Dark matter and energy is being researched from a multitude of angles. There are no definitive answers to any of our questions regarding this phenomenon.
3. Will the universe ever slow it's expansion?
The universe is proven to be expanding away from itself at a high velocity. Scientists say that the speed is still increasing. What this means for humanity is completely unknown. We may never have the time to get a grasp on this knowledge.
4. Is there more than one universe?
This question is presented by renowned physicist, Stephen Hawking. He hypothesizes that, like galaxies, there are an indeterminate amount of universes which make up an even larger multi-verse. This theory can only be proven when we can develop more powerful telescopes.
5. Is there life somewhere out there?
This is possibly the most compelling of the unknowns. Are we alone? Are there other intelligent life forms somewhere out in the stars wondering on the same existential questions that we sit here pondering? We can only hope that we will find ways to sustain our race for long enough to find the answers to these ultimate questions of the universe.

This is a Guest Blog Post written by Kathleen Hubert. Check out more of her work at

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Is Grub and Boot Error in Fedora the Reason for Declination in User Numbers?

I had used Red Hat, a kind (distro) of Linux operating systems over a decade ago as a first Linux OS. So, I love to use Fedora, CentOS, Scientific Linux, and Fedora as the most preferred nowadays.

I like Fedora because it is a leader of all Linux distro in terms of rolling out and testing of new software. There are some science dedicated Linux distros, such as Scientific Linux, Bio-Linux, Scibuntu, etc. However, it has been easier for me to use latest science / chemistry related software, such as PyMol, Chimera, Autodock, OpenBabel, BioPerl, etc. in graphical version via Fedora. Sometimes, some of this software had made me irritation due to repeated crashes. We can tolerate the crash because of availability for free use of these precious software. But the obnoxious condition in Fedora is due to crash or error in Grub / boot.

I have always been using a dual boot system of Fedora and Windows OS. Grub boot as master. Fedora 4, 9, 12 and 17 were shipped the version with Grub Error, as I experienced. Unlike other error crash, for Grub / boot error, we are unable to report or repair with the simple restart of the computer. It may be due to infection / viruses or due to bugs.

The grub / boot error is a very sensitive issue. At the initial days, I couldn't fix that error and had to format hard disk, which was responsible for my data loss. Thus, this boot error affected Windows system also. I hope Fedora will be shipped with a stable and reliable version of Grub. And Fedora can compete with Linux Mint, Ubuntu and Mageia to take its sovereignty again.