It's being reported that Stanislav Petrov passed away earlier this year. He was 77.
And even if you don't know who Petrov was, he might be the reason you're alive today.
In the 1980s, Petrov was a lieutenant colonel in the Soviet Union's Air Defense Forces. He was in charge of watching the computers at one of the Soviety Union's nuclear early warning centers. If the Americans wanted to start a nuclear war, Petrov would be one of the first to know.
At this time, the United States and the Soviet Union were embroiled in the Cold War. Each had stockpiled tens of thousands of nuclear weapons and a nuclear war, though horrific, often seemed imminent.
Suddenly, in the early morning of Sept. 26, 1983, a siren started to scream. If Petrov's computer was to be believed, the Americans had just attacked the Soviet Union.
The word "LAUNCH" appeared in bold red letters across Petrov's computer's screen. Then it happened again and again — five missiles in all.
Petrov need to react. If a nuclear attack really was incoming, the Soviets only had a few minutes to save themselves and launch a nuclear counter attack of their own.
It was Petrov's job, his duty, to alert his superiors — but something seemed off.
Petrov sat there, trying to figure out what to do. If the Americans were attacking, why were there only six bombs? Why not the thousands they were capable of? Why weren't there corroborating reports from ground radar? Plus this particular computer system was new and unproven. It could be a malfunction.
Did Petrov really think this was enough evidence to potentially start a full-scale nuclear exchange? Kill millions of people? It was a heavy weight to bear.
"Nobody would be able to correct my mistake if I had made one," Petrov later told the BBC.
After a few pregnant minutes, Petrov made his decision.
He picked up the phone and, though he couldn't know for sure, told his superiors it was a false alarm. His level-headed thinking may have saved millions of lives.
He was right. It was a malfunction.
For his efforts, Petrov's reward would be a long time coming. In the immediate aftermath, he actually got reprimanded by his superiors. It wouldn't be until after the fall of the Soviet Union that the world learned just how close we all came to destruction and the one man who saved it.
Petrov reportedly died on May 19 this year in a home outside Moscow. The news was not widely reported until now.
If you want to hear Petrov describe the incident in his own words, check out this interview with Petrov from the BBC.
**This was originally featured on

If you presently suffer from a mad case of wanderlust, you’re sure to appreciate this new motorhome unveiled by RV company Dethleffs. With a sleek design and head-to-toe solar panels, the vehicle was made for the open road. It’s especially perfect for those who seek to go off-grid for a while, as it runs without fuel or charging stations. Because the e.home is solar-powered and can store the sun’s energy in a battery pack, it allows campers to thrive in the wild without adversely impacting the environment.
New Atlas reports that the motorhome is built on Dethleffs Iveco Daily Electric chassis. The Iveco Daily is in turn powered by a variety of battery options. The largest battery gives the RV a range up to 174 miles on the European Cycle. With the camper’s extra weight, the e.home concept drops to just over 100 miles.
In reality, that short driving range doesn’t matter, as the e.home has 334 square feet of thin-film solar panels on its exterior. It can generate up to 3,000 watts of electricity to power the 228-Ah sodium-nickel-chloride battery. Though specific figures aren’t given, the company says the battery is good for approximately 1,500 charges — or about 250,000 km (155,350 miles).
Other applaudable features include a heating system that uses phase change materials to absorb heat when the outside temperature increases past 79 degrees F. Reportedly, the heat is released into the cabin when the temperature drops at night. To ensure RV owners stay warm, infrared heating panels have been installed in the floor, walls, and furniture.
Built-in driver assistance technologies include the CampConnect app and the Mobileye-based front vehicle monitoring system. The e.home also has two foil-based technologies: one is built into the window panes for darkening the windows for sleep or privacy, and a second in the lighting to create a mirrored surface when lights are turned off. A starlight system produces a starry sky on the ceiling above the alcove bed.
Apart from those technologies, the RV looks like a basic motorhome. A comfy sofa lounge/dining area that converts into a bed is included. There’s also a kitchen, toilet room, and flat panel TV.
While Dethleffs isn’t the first company to produce an electric motorhome, its vision is certainly compelling. Following are more photos of the innovative electric RV:

French street artist JR is but one of many who opposes the US-Mexico border wall and made his distaste for the division evident with a recent art installation. Along the latest piece of the border wall, JR and his team erected an enormous wood support for one of his signature posters, which features a young child peering over the wall. 
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 As MyModernMet reports, the project was a collaborative effort between JR and curator Pedro Alonzo (known to have worked with OS Gemeos, Shepherd Fairey, and Banksy). The human face seeks to evoke emotion in those who support the construction of a border wall between the neighboring countries. It also makes a statement about President Trump’s recent decision to rescind DACA, which protects undocumented immigrants who were brought to America as children.
Regardless of the piece JR produces, it nearly always features faces. His work on the separation wall between Israel and Palestine, for instance, resulted in him posting Palestinian portraits on the Israeli side and Israeli portrait on the Palestinian side. By doing this, he proved people couldn’t distinguish one from the other.
In 2015, JR revealed what life was like for immigrants entering the United States in the 19th Century with the Ellis Island street art project. And in 2005, he gained international attention for his wheat pasted photos of rioters in the Les Bosquets suburb of Paris. The recurring theme in his work is to encourage people to view each other without prejudice — and that is applaudable.

With his latest project, JR proves he’s not averse to tackling tough topics. Perhaps by showing a curious child peeking into the United States, he hopes to start a dialogue about what it means to immigrate to a new country.
Said JR in an exclusive interview:“I think there is no such thing as art trying to change the world. But being an artist and creating art in tons of different contexts, no matter what the mood is and sometimes against the codes that stand around you, is a way of breaking society and changing the world—just by trying.”
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Curator Pedro Alonzo and JR will be holding an open discussion on the street artist’s latest work and how immigration plays a role in his work on September 7, 2017, at 8 pm at Los Angles at Blum & Poe.

“For me, I am driven by two main philosophies: know more today about the world than I knew yesterday and lessen the suffering of others. You’d be surprised how far that gets you.”
What do you know today that you didn’t yesterday? Last Saturday? Last year?
Have you fallen into an intellectual rut?
Awaken Your Mind, And Reinvigorate Your Intellectual Curiosity. These Four Simple Habits Can Help Your Brain To Expand Beyond Your Wildest Expectations:
1. Intentional Learning
– Many of us would argue that we learn continuously. We read books. We stay up to date on politics. We travel to new places and do new things. It is wonderful to have a life that incorporates learning passively in the context of other activities – but when was the last time you went out of your way to try something new for the sake of increasing your knowledge base? When we learn as a result of more important ventures, we tend to stay within our comfort zone. We choose books that reinforce our current mindset. We travel to places we already know quite a bit about. We grow, but do we really change? Once a month, commit to doing an activity that is outside of your comfort zone. Do this with the sole intention of learning. Read a book by a politician you disagree with. Attend services at a church you don’t belong to. Take a class in a subject that would surprise your loved ones. You might just unlock a new and unexpected part of your mind this way.
2. Courageous Questioning
– Most of us neglect to question anything at all. We take the world as it is, and we accept people at their face value. We don’t dive any deeper, and we live complacently. We may never find out what exactly we’ve missed out on – and this is a tragedy. Start asking hard questions. Ask them of your family, your friends, your co-workers, and your political system. A difficult question does not need to be confrontational or offensive – it just has to challenge the mind. Ask your children what they’d change about the world, if they had the power to change one thing. Ask a local politician how a controversial bill might affect your own family. Ask your boss what their greatest regret – and greatest triumph – have been in their career. Then, truly listen to the answers. Form more questions. Dig even deeper. “It is not that I’m so smart,” claimed Albert Einstein, “but I stay with the questions much longer.”
3. Immersive Listening
– As Chuck Palahniuk stated, “People don’t listen, they just wait for their turn to talk.” While active listening is a great tactic for making conversation and ensuring that your partner feels heard, it still keeps the focus on you, yourself. Instead, try listening in a passive and immersive way. Lose yourself in their words. Don’t think critically. Don’t comment, relate your own experiences, or decide whether you agree or disagree. Just listen. Hear them out. Don’t react – internally or externally – until your partner is completely finished speaking. Apply this strategy to any monologue you care about – a political speech, a TED Talk, or even your child’s rambling account of their day at preschool. The more we absorb, the more we learn. The more we listen, the more open and powerful our minds can become.
4. Active Observation
– You may already see everything around you – but do you really notice it? Most of us observe our world in a passive way, taking note of only the things we think pertain to us directly. Spend ten minutes today observing your world with a critical eye, instead. Notice the small things. Analyze the everyday dynamics – global, interpersonal, societal – that normally pass you by. Think about them on a deeper level. Consider your own reactions and preconceptions. Why does the world work this way? Why do you see things the way that you do? What does it say about your character? We often look inward to increase our sense of self-awareness. This is a valuable practice, but it fails to account for the context of our environment. We don’t exist in a vacuum. This can result in missing pieces of our self-image. You’ll be surprised at what you can learn about your inner world when you make an effort to shift your focus outward.
“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever,” said Mahatma Gandhi.
Don’t limit yourself by fear or pure inertia. Grow your brain. Grow your sense of self. Be proud of the person you create.
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