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Danger, Danger High Voltage
July 4, 2007 11:50 AM   Subscribe

Creepy High Voltage Installations The Russian countryside yields sometimes most improbable sights - abandoned artifacts and installations from bizarre military/scientific research, strangely futuristic forms left to rust and decay - to be found by a curious photographer. "Master" stumbled upon this installation close to Russian city of Istra (50 km from Moscow) quite by chance, and these mysterious shots were percolating for a while around the web, until the answer was found. According to this little, cryptic, and quite secretive website [in Russian], the weird alien-like towers are the Experimental Grounds for High-Voltage Generation, the only open-air kind in the world. Amazingly, it's still in use... as the powerful lightnings rip through the night and the darkened forest - much like in "The Prestige" movie.
posted by psmealey (38 comments total) 35 users marked this as a favorite

 
The Russian photoblogger's livejournal that those photos are all stolen from is AWESOME. He seems obsessed with crazy electricity photos & abandonded places.
posted by jonson at 11:57 AM on July 4, 2007 [3 favorites]


Wow, those are incredible. Thanks for posting this.
posted by ORthey at 12:04 PM on July 4, 2007


(is it really stealing if you cite the source?)
posted by ORthey at 12:07 PM on July 4, 2007


(is it really stealing if you cite the source?)

Yes.
posted by public at 12:09 PM on July 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


Wow. These could be build by the Dharma initiative of an uninhabited hidden islan.d
posted by jouke at 12:35 PM on July 4, 2007 [2 favorites]


Sites like knutzz.net or darkroastedblend are basically link thieves. More often than not, they fail to cite the source of their work, but even when they do, who cares. They're still pulling 100% of the content (almost always photographs), adding little value (in this case more than usual) and profiting off of it via advertising.
posted by jonson at 12:38 PM on July 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


Tesla-tastic.
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 12:41 PM on July 4, 2007


Great post. These are interesting and the rest of that site is pretty interesting too, link thieves or not.
posted by caddis at 12:47 PM on July 4, 2007


Sites like knutzz.net or darkroastedblend are basically link thieves. More often than not, they fail to cite the source of their work, but even when they do, who cares. They're still pulling 100% of the content (almost always photographs), adding little value (in this case more than usual) and profiting off of it via advertising.

What's even better is when some other "blog" makes an entry linking to a site like that which reads "Hey these are cool pictures of xxxxx, click here (after you see my ads.)" and then games it onto digg. Digg just needs to start placing ads for itself on the sites of people who actually contribute to the internet, and then we'd have a nice advertising circle jerk.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 12:48 PM on July 4, 2007


You gotta hand it to the Russians. They really had a way with industrial design.
posted by Thorzdad at 12:51 PM on July 4, 2007


I can't speak about darkroastedblend generally, but in terms of this post, linking to darkroasted made the information accessible in English, and it cites the source, as does psmealey... so, for us, it's better than a straight link to the Russian language photo blog, since we get some context this way.
posted by taz at 12:53 PM on July 4, 2007


taz, I agree, in this case they added more value than usual.
posted by jonson at 12:55 PM on July 4, 2007


<derail>glad I'm not the only one irritated by darkroastedblend's misuse of others' photos, and violating Flickr's TOS in general. </derail>

Cool pix. I want to throw the big knife switch. *BZZORT*
posted by sidereal at 1:13 PM on July 4, 2007


What? Someone is actually LINKING TO INFORMATION THEY DIDN'T CREATE? Burn THEM! BURN THEM!

P.S Don't forget to send us a link to the article on CNN about your trial and imprisonment.
posted by blue_beetle at 1:14 PM on July 4, 2007


Where did all the Russians who lived in these places go? Seems like a lot of empty buildings in Russia.

(In Soviet Russia, building empties you!)
posted by GuyZero at 1:29 PM on July 4, 2007


Incredibly awesome!

I think I've found it on Google Maps.
posted by smably at 1:35 PM on July 4, 2007 [3 favorites]


to sidereal & johnson:

A little clarification on Dark Roasted Blend content policy:

We are perhaps different from other sites, in that WE ASK SPECIFIC PERMISSION from content owners wherever we make a feature (more than simple couple of images and a link) post or review.

The creators of content gain additional exposure, and we credit the source (by permission) on both the blog and flickr photo-pages. Read more about it in "about" page. Plus we run many features with articles written by Dark Roasted Blend writers.
posted by merseybeat at 1:42 PM on July 4, 2007


blue_beetle, merseybeat - Flickr is a photo sharing site for Your Photos (photos you took). It is not a web host.

OK, no more derails from me this week.
posted by sidereal at 1:56 PM on July 4, 2007


merseybeat, my apologies, I didn't realize you were granted permission, that's completely different.

And blue_beetle, it's not "linking to information they didn't create" which is actually just called "the internet" but rather pulling someone else's content off their website & putting it up on your own, using their work (photography, art, whatever) to pay your bills via advertising. But congrats on your snark attempt, you're coming along nicely.
posted by jonson at 2:08 PM on July 4, 2007


smabley - I think you've got it. Is that ever neat seeing it on Google maps. The whole thing is eerie.
posted by arcticwoman at 2:18 PM on July 4, 2007 [1 favorite]


Incredibly awesome!

I think I've found it on Google Maps.
posted by smably


Wow.
posted by caddis at 2:23 PM on July 4, 2007


I think I've found it on Google Maps.

How in the hell did you manage that?
posted by fusinski at 5:37 PM on July 4, 2007


*BZZZORT*
posted by jouke at 5:47 PM on July 4, 2007


How in the hell did you manage that?

It's pretty easy really. Just look up Istra and look around a little. Can't miss it.
posted by puke & cry at 5:47 PM on July 4, 2007


Of course, I say that after already knowing where it is.
posted by puke & cry at 5:50 PM on July 4, 2007


Haha. I just tried that method for 5 minutes or so and I never would have found that. I never would have thought it would even be recognizable. Bravo, smably
posted by fusinski at 5:56 PM on July 4, 2007


Yeah, what puke & cry said. Not too hard given the name of the town.

Also, more photos! God, I love this place.
posted by smably at 6:12 PM on July 4, 2007


It is totally awesome! But.. What the hell does it do?
posted by Chuckles at 7:09 PM on July 4, 2007


What? Someone is actually LINKING TO INFORMATION THEY DIDN'T CREATE? Burn THEM! BURN THEM!

Yeah, hell, jonson was about ready to throw 'em onto one of those big high voltage installations before he found out they'd gotten permission and all.

Thanks for the post, psmealey. Most interesting.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:51 PM on July 4, 2007


Am I missing the joke here? The photos -- some of them anyway -- look like they're definitely CG renderings.

Some of them are very realistic looking, to the point where I'd believe they're authentic (though I'm not all that adept at telling fakes from the real thing), but a few of them aren't that great. Something is really wrong with the lighting in the last one.

Are they all renderings? If so, some of them are damn impressive ... or are they real and they've had some weird manipulation done to them that makes them look fake?
posted by Kadin2048 at 10:27 PM on July 4, 2007


I thought that one was hinky, too. But others looked authentic. I eventually sent shmably's link to a friend I thought would find it interesting.

I'm still not entirely convinced. But I've also seen photo's of Tesla's gear, and it's pretty unreal-looking, too.

I want to believe.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:40 PM on July 4, 2007


I found some photos of lightning testing in Russia.

They do lightning testing in the US, but I've never seen anything quite like the equipment in Russia.
posted by eye of newt at 11:06 PM on July 4, 2007


So in Russia they don't make them take down their version of Burning Man in the off season?
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 11:29 PM on July 4, 2007


That one does look like a rendering, but check out the google map link that smably posted. If it is, it looks like google is in on it.

And what's the big circular thing to the south? Istra + Cyclotron scores some hits.

Then there's this abstract.

And this, from another paper: A similar, albeit statistically less significant deviation was reported by the ISTRA collaboration and attributed to a nonzero pion tensor form factor, FT. Inclusion of FT = 0:0018(3), clearly at variance with the Standard Model, would account for this anomaly. However, we saw no analogous effect in radiative muon decays μ+ → e+υυγ.

Holy shit - there's another one a bit to the south of the "cyclotron". This has got to be the Russian analog to Batavia, IL.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 2:42 AM on July 5, 2007


Your web browser is not fully supported by Google Maps.

WTF? It's called Firefox 2, Google Maps Canada.
posted by Joeforking at 5:48 AM on July 5, 2007


To my eyes that doesn't look so much like a rendering so much as it does a hand-tinted photo.
posted by Songdog at 7:11 AM on July 5, 2007


I just realized I mislinked for "the other one".
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 9:02 AM on July 5, 2007


Yeah, so the Russian Power Test Lightning Generator Fake CGI (Or Maybe Not) stuff is pretty neat, but [derail] I liked this story on the site a lot more; look at the perspective, and imagine the work that must have gone into creating them. Oh, and I contribute no advertising revenue (I think) - Firefox + AdBlock = Web Surfing Bliss. :) :) :) [/derail]
posted by ZakDaddy at 9:04 PM on July 5, 2007


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