Fridaygram: Google Public DNS, lonely black hole, tiny chameleons

FEB 17, 2012
By Scott Knaster, Google Code Blog Editor

Google Public DNS is a fast, free DNS service that we introduced a little more than 2 years ago. As the Official Google Blog post aptly puts it, “DNS acts like the phone book of the Internet”, translating from human-readable URLs to all-numeric IP addresses. Google Public DNS started as an experimental service and has now become the most-used public DNS service in the world with over 70 billion requests per day, mostly from outside the U.S. Will the next step be support for users in more distant places? (Probably not there.)

Speaking of faraway places, astronomers using images from the Hubble space telescope have found black hole HLX-1, which appears to be all that’s left of a dwarf galaxy that once contained other stars. The theory is that this late galaxy was torn apart by a nearby spiral galaxy, leaving only HLX-1. The other stars became part of the larger galaxy.

While you’re musing on this supermassive black hole, consider some much tinier creatures: little chameleons, just about one inch long, recently discovered in Madagascar. Scientists think this miniaturization might be an evolutionary response to limited resources.

tiny tiny tiny tiny tiny chameleon
Tiny chameleon: he comes and goes, he comes and goes

Finally, we can’t help but jump on the Linsanity bandwagon. Of course, we’re doing it in a nerdy way by pointing you to this article (interesting even for non-sports fans) about why talent evaluation is so tricky.

On Fridays we take a break and do a Fridaygram post just for fun. Each Fridaygram item must pass only one test: it has to be interesting to us nerds. Special thanks to Wired Science for having many excellent posts this week.

Images: Glaw, F., et al., PLoS ONE