Why do the three-letter codes for so many American airports end in "X"? How do you tell all the "Yxx" codes for Canadian airport codes apart? Where is SUX, again? Why are you flying into FCA? Airport Codes is a gorgeous, yet informative guide to the mysteries behind your favorite (or least favorite) airport code.
what it's like to fly the $23,000 Singapore Airlines Suites Class (includes lots of photos) [more inside]
"I'm not sure whether it mattered. One young man very kindly said to me, 'You don’t understand, women are holier than men.' I said, 'That’s rubbish and it doesn't excuse the insult,' and then I added that I spent 13 years in yeshiva and there's nothing he could tell me that I haven't already heard. Then the original man, the one who refused to sit next to me, muttered to another man as he was walking away, 'She doesn't understand.' I said, 'I understand everything, and don't talk to me as if I'm not here.' He ignored me, and all the other men turned their backs and did not respond or even look at me." [Similar version at JewFem blog.]
"It was always assumed that V-formation flight was learned from the adult birds. But these guys are all the same age and they learned to fly from a human in a microlight. They learned V-formation flying from each other. National Geographic reports on some of the fascinating intricacies of the V formation observed in migrating birds.
"Normal return route canceled. Proceed as follows: Strip all company marking, registration numbers and identifiable insignia from exterior surfaces. Proceed westbound soonest your discretion to avoid hostilities and deliver NC18602 to marine terminal La Guardia Field New York. Good luck." [more inside]
Flying RC Aircraft Carrier, Last year we saw the first launch of an RC Aircraft from an RC Carrier. Now we have the first launch AND landing of an RC Aircraft on a Flying RC Carrier.
Split of a Second is an eight and a half minute youtube video about wingsuit flying and a practitioner of the art.
The Epidemiology of In-Flight Medical Emergencies Friday SLYT- No time to read the NEMJ paper? (Previous Blue Medical emergency goodness). Doctors of Metafilter, what are you're favourite stories?
Several members of the Philadelphia Orchestra were on a flight from Bejing to Macao that got stuck on the tarmac for three hours. With nothing better to do, the musicians resorted to doing what they do best...
Turn up the volume, kick up your feet, and take a relaxing glide with Alexander Polli Warning: The part where he attempts to thread the needle may cause involuntary clenching.
United Airlines holds plane so passenger can say goodbye to his dying mother. Kerry Drake broke down when it seemed he would miss the last flight to Lubbock, Texas, where his mother lay dying. Then something that an airline watchdog says "almost never happens," happened. Also on CNN.
Why are owls so wise? Perhaps it's because they're utter badasses.
Ferocity is essential for a bird whose frigid, spotty range extends across northeastern China, the Russian Far East and up toward the Arctic Circle, one that breeds and nests in the dead of winter, perched atop a giant cottonwood or elm tree, out in the open, in temperatures 30 degrees below zero Fahrenheit. Dr. Slaght’s colleague Sergei Surmach videotaped a female sitting on her nest during a blizzard. “All you could see at the end was her tail jutting out,” Dr. Slaght said.The New York Times Science section gives an update on some current owl research. [more inside]
Pretty stunning cockpit perspective footage of unmanned aerial vehicles interacting in close quarters, flying with a range of flyers (Echelon FPV). [more inside]
"THE CLOUDS stretched across the Texas sky like a highway. And soaring along those lanes, lofted nearly 8,000 feet by the hot air rising from the earth, two hang gliders raced in tight pursuit of the most prized feat in this high adrenaline niche sport: farthest ever flown." The NY Times on breaking the hang gliding long distance record.
Tony Stark style daredevils "flying" over, under and through the water (SLYT) This video (warning: annoying music) gets off to a slow start, but then the air ballet begins and the people turn into cormorants and dolphins. Enjoy!
Why an airline that travelers love is failing. Virgin America, named the "top overall airline in the U.S." with a huge wow factor is having financial problems and experiencing cutbacks. Meanwhile, deep discounter Spirit Air is imposing $100 checked-bag fees, is wildly profitable, and has high bookings. [more inside]
Heathrow Approach Planes lining up on approach to London Heathrow at 17x speed. Strangely hypnotic slyt.
Short film by Khalil Joseph Song by Flying Lotus, Film by Khalil Joseph. Very violent images, but beautiful all at the same time.
The working week of a commercial pilot as seen from the cockpit A timelapse video showing takeoffs and landings from the pilot's perspective. Complete with squashed insects on the windscreen.
The frequent fliers who flew too much. American Airlines said that for a single payment of $350,000, you could fly with them anywhere, first class, for the rest of your life. Why were they so surprised when a few people... well... did?
A Philadelphia program is bringing families, airport employees and airlines together to help autistic kids fly more comfortably. [more inside]
"Uh Oh. Construction workers please note: Somebody just built a 20-foot tower using flying robots. No people involved." Eric Guizo notes: "The ceiling of the room where the assembly is taking place was equipped with a motion-capture system. A computer uses the vision data to keep track of the quadcopters and tell them where to go — the same approach used at ETH's Flying Machine Arena"
Tricks for getting your violin on a plane, by Lara St. John. How about an upright bass? A cello? A guitar? (previously) A trombone? A tuba (and other horns)? What about lutes, a djembe, a hurdy-gurdy, or bagpipes? (Some general tips. More general tips - part 1, part 2.)
People; ask not what F14's can do for you, but rather, what F14People can do for SLYoutubewhatwoahwowJetFighters are People?
Seanna Sharpe's crazy acrobatics show 285 feet up the Williamsburg Bridge. (Not) for those afraid of heights or lycra. More Seanna here.
Video: An Italian pilot flies a glider through the Alps for eleven hours (video highly condensed, obviously) at times coming agonizingly close to the mountains, not because he's reckless, but because that's what's keeping him aloft. Fullscreen viewing recommended.
You must have heard about frisbee, a flying disc based pastime, haven't you? Throwing a flying disc can be more exciting than you think. You can try to break one of the world records (there's a record for 1-year olds and a challenge for 102+ years old women). Alternatively, you can play some competitive games, including some well known ones like ultimate and some you probably haven't heard about: buttgutts, a game of immense skill played between two teams of one to ten players each. The objective is to hit the oppostition's butts with discs.
Boeing are currently testing the latest version of their venerable Jumbo Jet, the 747-8. Yesterday, in one of the last test flights prior to certification the new 747 flew for 17 hours, a distance of over 11,000 miles. The flight path can be seen here. [more inside]
Two hours just to sort through the error messages. What happened to that Airbus A380 (Qantas flight QF32) whose engine caught fire in mid-air between Singapore and Sydney in November 2010? One of the five crewmembers on the flight deck recounts the story, which centres on airplane computer systems as much as on keeping tons of metal in the air. [more inside]
An RC flight around lower New York City Featuring nice, close passes of the Statue of Liberty and the Brooklyn Bridge.
Every Anime Opening Ever Made (an admittedly exaggerated title) is a SLYT romp through the repeating themes in 93 different opening sequences, compiled by Derek Lieu (via Neatorama) [more inside]
Once, there was a boy named Yves. He lived in the mountainous country of Switzerland, and he dreamed of flying. He loved the idea of being free to soar through the air so much that he became a pilot. Later, he went on to fly bigger planes. Perhaps he's even been your pilot. But being a pilot was never quite enough. Yves still dreamed of soaring through the air, like a bird. And now, he does. Meet Jetman. Previously
The flying mammals were placed in a closed obstacle course on the forest floor. "It’s like walking a straight line," Fenton quipped, referring to a common test given to suspected drunk drivers by police —except to succeed, the bats had to maneuver around hanging plastic chains without crashing. Bats can fly drunk.
The exotic blend of international travel, the authority of commanding the ever larger and faster airliners, and those dashing uniforms turned heads, drew autograph hunters and attracted groupies. Pilots also made a lot of money. Today it is different. Captain Dave Ryter earned so little when he was a co-pilot for a major airline that he lived in a gang area of Los Angeles, commuted for hours to work and made less money than a bus driver. A pilot's life: exhausting hours for meagre wages
This past week: in D.R. Congo, an MD-80 strikes a lava field at the end of a runway; earlier over Iran, a medical emergency diversion frightens a passenger; the day prior, an LA-Sydney flight diverts to Honolulu to drop off a new mother and her child born en route. Also medical emergencies, unruly passengers, and unruly medical emergencies. It's avherald.com, your daily source for pretty much every incident occurring on an airliner.
First-person base jumping in Switzerland. Stick with it, as the horizontal movement across the rock face using the gliding bodysuit will blow your mind.
"The unburied come back to haunt us." On July 2, 1937, Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan took off from Lae, Papua New Guinea (map) in their Lockheed Electra en route to Howland Island (map). They were never seen again. [more inside]
Most frequent flyer programs are kind of a raw deal: seats are often severely limited, many popular dates are blocked and fees can be steep. But there are exceptions: JetBlue just came out with an All-You-Can-Jet Offer. $599 gets people unlimited travel anywhere on their network for a month beginning September 8th and seats are not limited. The idea isn't new: American Airlines used to sell a Lifetime AAirPass through the Neiman Marcus catalog, which offered unlimited travel on any AA flight in any class. Unfortunately, it cost a cool $3 million.