This year we are once again hosting our annual Trunk or Treat  event at McDonald’s on 485 Broadway in Paterson.

We will have candy, sweet treats, school supplies and happy meals packed inside of different trunks. We will also have a Halloween fashion show for the kids, a dance contest and more.

We feel that it is important to provide a positive and safe space for children to trick or treat in our city. Because parents want to provide their children with a safe way to enjoy the holiday we are expecting a very large turnout!

Please donate to make this event a success and bring something positive to the community!

Your generous donations will fund the candy, school supplies, happy meals, decorations and DJ. Remember, no ammount is too small! 

Thank you! 



Thanks to the hundreds of people who sent me their photos of the lunar eclipse! I used a lot of the photos (though not all — I’ve received a lot more since I put this together) to make this cross-country 20 fps time lapse. (It’s a big GIF so you might have to wait for it to load…)

The title card comes from Max Corneau (aka AstroDad) who camped out in Rockwall, TX and managed to get this terrific shot at totality before the clouds closed in.

Ron Pope in Abilene, TX caught a very spooky shot of the October moon rising from the mist.

I love the “moon bounce" images that Brittney Maehl sent me from Beloit, WI. She told me: “Trying to capture the Blood Moon as an amateur WITHOUT a tripod was like making the ultimate sniper shot!” Luckily she was Navy-trained, so she got some great steady shots as well that I included in the time lapse.

The last shot is from flickr user slworking2. He says, “I used the tracking mount from an old telescope to follow the moon - and this allowed for a sharply-focused exposure.”

It was wonderful to get your photos (there were so many cool ones I couldn’t highlight specifically) and to hear your stories of blood moon hunting. Thanks again!

ICYMI: Why are blood moons red, anyway?


Forty years ago: Desegregation in Boston Public Schools

Boston, Massachusetts, has long been a crucible for social, cultural, and political change. But Boston is also a city of contradictions.

Forty years ago, a group of parents filed a formal complaint in the U.S. District Court for Massachusetts.  The case beings with this simple sentence: “This is a class action brought by black children attending the Boston public schools and their parents.”

Tallulah Morgan et al. v. James W. Hennigan et al., United States District Court Civil Action Case File No. 72-911-G—known as the Boston schools desegregation case—occupies 54 large storage boxes in the National Archives at Boston.  The case was presented over a period of two years, and on June 21, 1974, Federal Judge W. Arthur Garrity ruled that the School Committee of the City of Boston had “intentionally brought about and maintained racial segregation” in the Boston public schools.

The response to the implementation was protest, at times violent, but eventually the Boston Public Schools would change.

During the summer of 2014, a group of educators from across the country—elementary through college—spent a week at the National Archives at Boston and Chicago studying issues of civil rights.

They scanned documents like the above letter from Mrs. Sumner Bernstein. She wrote to Boston Public Schools Superintendent Leary explaining how her initial support of Boston school desegregation turned to anger and fear after her daughter’s experience at Boston English (10/22/1974, from the Records of District Courts of the United States). All of the newly digitized documents are available online by entering “Primarily Teaching 2014” in the documents search box.

They also used these newly digitized primary sources to create online teaching activities related to education equality:

You can create your own activities on this subject with the tools available on DocsTeach!

via Education Updates » Forty years ago: Desegregation in Boston Public Schools


This Time, Humans Out-Perform Computers

Computers are terrible at mapping the brain.  Given a cross-section of a retina for example, computers have trouble distinguishing neurons from other cells and empty space.  Humans, on the other hand, can perform this task with ease.

Still, mapping the brain would be a monumental task for one human.  So MIT neuroscientist Sebastien Seung recruited more than 120,000 online gamers to help him - via a game called EyeWire.

Players help color in neurons, and a computer later compiles their data into a complex map. Already, their work is helping scientists understand how the brain sees movement.

You can hear all about it in this story from Joe Palca.

Iceland’s citizens were given a chance to help forge a new constitution for their country through Facebook and Twitter, so it’s not surprising that they backed the resulting draft. Now it’s over to the politicians.

Here’s a quick run-down of the background to all this. Iceland’s banking system collapsed right at the start of the financial crisis, taking the country’s government with it. The new leadership decided to go the open route, not least because secretive dealings were largely to blame for the banking fiasco.

There were two technologically interesting spinoffs of this situation. One was the creation of the Modern Media Initiative (now the International Modern Media Institute), a Wikileaks-inspired free speech drive – the idea here is to turn Iceland into an haven for free speech by inviting media organizations from around the world to host their sites in Iceland’s green data centers and enjoy the country’s strong new protections for whistleblowers and the like.

The other was the constitutional crowdsourcing. Iceland’s old constitution was based on that of former master Denmark and was seen as out-of-date, so 25 citizens were brought into into a Constitutional Council to help create a new one. The council took the ideas raised online by their fellow citizens and delivered the resulting draft in July last year. It took a while to ask the voting public at large what it thought of the result, but Iceland now has its answer to that question.

Who would you want to see on a panel discussing women superheroes?

We’re putting together a panel for San Diego ComicCon 2014!   Right now we’re envisioning a panel focused on women superheroes and aiming for an all-women panel!    What we definitely want is a lot of intersectionality on the panel— particularly women of color and women who hold multiple intersectional identities!  Women who write novels or comics or webcomics about superheroines!  Women who study transmedia and the depiction of superheroes!  Women who provide cultural commentary on comics and media representation!

This is where we’d love your help!  What would your dream panel on this topic look like?   Who should we invite and who would you like to see?

anonymous said:

sea family, do you or your followers know what going through foster care is like?

We do have lots of asks coming from dears in troubled homes, but The Sea Family is totally inexperienced on this subject. It’s something we’d like to be able to advise on for those with no other exit, but it’s not something we really can without firsthand knowledge of the problems and stresses that come as result.

Can any of Momma’s babies provide some insight what it’s like going through a foster program? Know someone who does? We’d love to get a better picture of the process! Reblog or send a reply and we’ll release a future master-post containing your stories and tips!

- Engineer Dave

World War I army nurse Louise Marie Liers (pictured at the top) is just one of the women profiled in the DIY History project. Her volunteer-transcribed letters, originally sent from Nevers, France, to her family in Iowa, mostly implore her parents not to worry about her. Occasionally, however, the horrors of war make their way through.

"When I see their horrible wounds or worse still their mustard gas burns or the gassed patients who will never again be able to do a whole day’s work — I lose every spark of sympathy for the beasts who devised such tortures and called it warfare," she wrote.


Thrilled to see our Louise Liers papers featured in this NBC blog article about transcription crowdsourcing!! For more info on the Iowa native and WWI Army nurse, see the links below:

IWA Tumblr: World War I collection sneak preview

IWA Tumblr: World War I centennial

Iowa Digital Library: Louise Liers papers and photographs

endeavor : an attempt to achieve a goal; earnest and industrious effort, especially when sustained over a period of time; an enterprise or undertaking

I’d like to welcome everybody and provide an introduction.

Right now, the year is 2014. Up until this moment throughout ‘modern’ civilization, we’ve struggled amongst society to penetrate through the economic discourse of our own devices and fuel innovation by actively participating in it ourselves alongside those working on the frontiers of our ignorance.

Citizen science is essentially rebranded or evolved activism, and it’s come a long way since the advent of the globally-connected wireless force of influence we call ‘the internet’. We’ve watched online activism take shape, assemble, and thrive in real-time on Twitter during Arab Spring. Just as quickly, we’ve watched viral smear campaigns become snuffed out just as fast as they’ve begun. Human society has entered an age where information - even the wrong kind - can spread, infiltrating homes and mobile devices, plaguing scientifically illiterate minds and confusing the masses regarding reality and the way society even functions.


However, just as in biological or cosmological evolution, entropy, when properly recognized, can be guided in a way where the outcome is beneficial for all. Carl Sagan once asserted, “if you wait long enough, everything changes;" which brings me to the present moment. We’re hungry for information, thirsty for the truth, and starving for transparency in an age where we so desperately need it the most amidst a growing population where new minds and voices are coming online every day.

One of us knows at least someone - other than ourselves - that have aided in scientific research, or attempted, at least. From charity baskets, door-to-door donations, online/sidewalk fundraising campaigns, walks/runs and triathlons for illnesses or disorders, we all have an innate desire to help our fellow brothers and sisters.

Aid. Cures. Progress. None of it happens without the research to propel it forward.

We all know that we want to assist in solving problems. And realistically, we understand that they won’t be solved today. Or tomorrow. But someday. And having the peace of mind that we supported this/that effort in someway, provides us hope in humanity and strengthens our resolve to remain confident regarding a future we realize may be beyond our time.

Now, there’s a network which embodies human curiosity and ingenuity never before put forward. It’s called Endeavorist.


From biochemistry to astrophysics, Endeavorist provides a platform for researchers to put their work in progress on display, communicate its importance, and launch a ‘Research Campaign' to have it funded. Adversely, 'Grants' and 'Grant Campaigns' - features unique to Endeavorist - drive innovation by the public at large (or another researcher) by essentially placing a bounty on the research either not yet explored, or which hasn’t been given the attention or support you feel it deserves and you’d like to see flourish.

Endeavorist is the world’s first curiosity network, meaning, it belongs to the world. We’ve long been held back by bureaucratic, commercial, industrial, and often institutionalized interests that scarcely reflect the passions of the researchers themselves. We’re overdue for an upgrade on how we connect the science of tomorrow with the researchers of today.

I invite you all to discover Endeavorist, because it’s what we’ve deserved all along. This is a small step for citizen science, but a giant leap for the advancement of scientific research.


These Smart Umbrellas Measure Rainfall Data For Meteorologists (And Send It Back To The Cloud) | FastCompany

A team of Dutch scientists wants to use the crowd instead, by turning umbrellas into mini weather-monitoring stations. Every time it rains, smart umbrellas would use sensors to detect falling drops, and then use Bluetooth to send a report to a smartphone app. As people walk around with umbrellas throughout a city during a storm, each app would send in data to a central system where meteorologists could use it to come up with better predictions.


Can we really trust the crowd? Jens Krause at TEDxGhent

Crowd-sourcing, crowd-funding, is all really that great? Well, Jens Krause has made a life of studying how crowds, or swarms, make decisions, and it turns out that crowds make terrible ones sometimes, depending on the type of problems they’re facing.

Whether you’re about to launch a big crowd-sourced project at work or are simply trying to find the best place to eat tonight, Jens’s results are worth knowing. Check it out above.


State Park Using Hashtags & Social Media to Create a Time-Lapse of Wildfire Recovery

Hashtags are nothing more than a novelty byproduct of the 21st century, right? Wrong. At least that’s the case in the minds of the scientists behind a new project that takes advantage of photography, hashtags and social media to help crowdsource a time-lapse documentation of fire damage recovery.

The initiative, known as #MorganFire02, uses signs with included brackets along the trails of Mount Diablo State Park. Said signs politely ask travelers to place their phone in the bracket, snap a photo and share the regrowth process of the land via Instagram and/or Twitter.

(Continue Reading)


Satellite company DigitalGlobe started a crowdsourcing campaign on its platform Tomnod.

Anyone can sift through more than 3,200 square kilometres of satellite images and flag any signs of debris or other clues.

DigitalGlobe is asking web users to tag any clues that may help locate the missing plane. Tomnod is not making the tagged results public.

If users start tagging some regions in large numbers, DigitalGlobe plans to use a computer algorithm to detect that.

To start searching, go to:



What do you think - is Mary Cassatt’s handwriting as fancy as her hat? We hope you’ll evaluate this important question and admire the penmanship of many other artists while participating in our BRAND NEW TRANSCRIPTION PROJECT, The Art of Handwriting. In a first for the smithsoniantranscriptioncenter, your transcriptions will be featured in a forthcoming book on handwriting to be published in 2015 by Princeton Architectural Press. If you’ve transcribed before, this is your chance for the limelight! And if you haven’t, there’s no better time to start than today!

Mary Cassatt, 1914 / unidentified photographer. Frederick A. Sweet research material on Mary Cassatt and James A. McNeill Whistler, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Mary Cassatt letter to John Wesley Beatty, 1905 Sept. 5. Carnegie Institute, Museum of Art records, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Transcribe this letter here!


This is my Ada-cat! She is a six-year old black-and-white, a foundling in Brooklyn adopted off the street as an infant, and as you can see, she’s got fats, she’s got wits, she’s got boom personality. She also, horrifically, has cancer and so this:


is the GoFundMe page about that.

If you can, please signal-boost! We thank you so much from the bottom of our chinny-chin-chins :D