Wikipedia:Picture of the day/September 2012

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A monthly archive of Wikipedia's featured pictures


These featured pictures previously appeared (or shall appear) as Picture of the day as scheduled below. You can add the automatically updating Picture of the day to your userpage or talk page using {{pic of the day}} (text version) or {{POTD}} (short version). For instructions on how to make custom POTD layouts, see Wikipedia:Picture of the day.


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September 1 - Sat

Picture of the day
Battle of Bazeilles

This 1873 painting, Les dernières cartouches ("The last bullets") depicts a small detachment from the "Blue Division" of the French Army's Troupes de marine in the Battle of Bazeilles on 1 September 1870. As the French Army retreated from its loss at the Battle of Sedan, this group remained in the last house on the road to Sedan, fighting to the last bullet to cover the retreat.

Artist: Alphonse-Marie-Adolphe de Neuville;
Restoration: Adam Cuerden

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September 2 - Sun

Picture of the day
Boulder brain coral

A colony of boulder brain coral (Colpophyllia natans), a species of stony brain coral found primarily in the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. It is characterised by large, domed colonies, which may be up to 2 m (6.6 ft) across, and by the meandering network of ridges and valleys on its surface. It is considered one of the dominant reef-building corals of the Caribbean region and is commonly found on shallower reef ledges and slopes.

Photo: Nick Hobgood
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September 3 - Mon

Picture of the day
Little Penguins

A family of Little Penguins (Eudyptula minor) exiting their burrow. At an average of 33 cm (13 in) in height, 43 cm (17 in) in length, and 1.5 kg (3.3 lb) in weight, this is the smallest species of penguin. It is found on the coastlines of southern Australia and New Zealand, with some colonies popular as tourist attractions.

Photo: JJ Harrison
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September 4 - Tue

Picture of the day
Hagia Sophia Church, Sofia

The nave of the Hagia Sophia Church, the second oldest church in the Bulgarian capital Sofia. The present basilica dates to the 6th century and is believed to be the fifth structure to be constructed on the site. The city took its name from the church in the 14th century. It is now one of the most valuable pieces of Early Christian architecture in southeastern Europe.

Photo: Plamen Agov
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September 5 - Wed

Picture of the day
Three Little Pigs

The wolf blows down the straw house in a 1904 adaptation of Three Little Pigs, a fairy tale featuring anthropomorphic animals. Printed versions date back to the 1840s, but the story itself is thought to be much older. The story in its arguably best-known form appeared in English Fairy Tales by Joseph Jacobs, first published in 1890. The phrases used in the story, and the various morals which can be drawn from it, have become embedded in western culture. The story uses the literary rule of three, expressed in this case as a "contrasting three", as the third pig's brick house turns out to be the only one which is adequate to withstand the wolf.

Artist: Leonard Leslie Brooke; Restoration: Jujutacular
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September 6 - Thu

Picture of the day
Dhow

A dhow, a traditional sailing vessel that originated in the Indian Ocean and Red Sea areas, sailing past the East African island of Zanzibar. Dhows are characterised by one or more masts with lateen sails and typically have long, thin hulls. Even to the present day, dhows make commercial journeys between the Persian Gulf and East Africa.

Photo: Muhammad Mahdi Karim
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September 7 - Fri

Picture of the day
Battle of Malakoff

The Battle of Malakoff, during the Crimean War, was fought between the Russian and the allied French-British armies on 7 September 1855. In one of the war's defining moments, a French zouave installed the French flag on the top of the Russian redoubt, as depicted here. The battle brought about the capture of Sevastopol after an 11-month siege.

Artist: William Simpson; Restoration: Adam Cuerden
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September 8 - Sat

Picture of the day
Engadin, Switzerland

A view of the High Engadin valley in Switzerland, from Muottas Muragl. The Engadin follows the route of the Inn River from its headwaters at Maloja Pass running northeast until the Inn flows into Austria 100 km (62 mi) downstream. The Engadin is protected by high mountains on all sides and is famous for its sunny climate, beautiful landscapes and outdoor activities.

Photo: Murdockcrc
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September 9 - Sun

Picture of the day
San Bruno pipeline explosion damage

Destruction caused by a natural gas pipeline explosion, which took place on September 9, 2010, in San Bruno, California, a suburb of San Francisco. Defective welds in the pipeline caused the gas to leak, which then caused the explosion. The resulting fire was fed by the natural gas, hampering emergency efforts, and the fire was not contained until the following day.

Photo: Mbz1
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September 10 - Mon

Picture of the day
Dusky Robin

The Dusky Robin (Melanodryas vittata) is a small passerine bird native to Tasmania. A member of the Australian Robin family, it is not related to European or American Robins. It is a brown-plumaged bird of open woodland, measuring 16–17 cm (6.3–6.7 in) in length.

Photo: JJ Harrison
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September 11 - Tue

Picture of the day
Manganese

Chips of electrolytically refined manganese, showing signs of oxidation, as well as a 1 cm3 cube for comparison. Manganese is a silvery-gray metal that resembles iron. It is named for the Magnesia region of Greece, which is also the source of the name magnesium. Manganese has important industrial metal alloy uses, particularly in stainless steels.

Photo: Alchemist-hp
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September 12 - Wed

Picture of the day
Henry Compton, Bishop of London

The Right Reverend Henry Compton (1632–1713) was the Bishop of London from 1675 until his death. During this time, he was also appointed a member of the Privy Council, and entrusted with the education of the two princesses – Mary and Anne. Compton was strongly opposed to Roman Catholicism. On the accession of the Catholic James II he lost his seat in the council and his deanery in the Chapel Royal. At the Glorious Revolution Compton embraced the cause of William and Mary, being one of the Immortal Seven who invited William to invade England. His son John travelled to Maryland, and from afar, Henry helped establish the Anglican Church in the colony.

Artist: Godfrey Kneller
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September 13 - Thu

Picture of the day
Lyapunov fractal

A rendering of a Lyapunov fractal, a type of bifurcational fractal named after Russian mathematician Aleksandr Lyapunov. A Lyapunov fractal is constructed by mapping the regions of stability and chaotic behaviour between two values A and B. In the image, yellow corresponds to stability, and blue represents chaos.

Image: BernardH
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September 14 - Fri

Picture of the day
Old Fort of Zanzibar

The Old Fort of Zanzibar is a fortification and the oldest building in Stone Town, the capital of Zanzibar, Tanzania. It was built in the late 17th century by the Omanis to defend the island from the Portuguese, and later used as a prison and as barracks. In the early 20th century it was also used as a depot during the construction of the railway that connected Stone Town to the village of Bububu.

Photo: Muhammad Mahdi Karim
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September 15 - Sat

Picture of the day
Computer-generated imagery using Cobalt

Shown here is a three-dimensional rendering of a high-end espresso tamper with an integral bubble level, created using Cobalt, a computer-aided design computer program published by Ashlar-Vellum. The program can be used in either direct-modeling mode to create and edit objects, or the highly structured, history-driven parametric way. Cobalt's interface was designed in 1988 by Martin Newell (who created the Utah teapot in 1975 and went on to work at Xerox PARC, where the WIMP paradigm for graphical user interfaces was invented) and Dan Fitzpatrick.

Image: Greg L
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September 16 - Sun

Picture of the day
Imperial Hairstreak butterfly

The Imperial Hairstreak (Jalmenus evagoras) is a butterfly species native to Australia. Its wingspan is about 40 mm (1.6 in). The caterpillars feed on various Acacia species and are found in mutualistic relationships with ants of Iridomyrmex.

Photo: Benjamint444
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September 17 - Mon

Picture of the day
Saturn's moon Mimas

Saturn's moon Mimas, as imaged by the Cassini spacecraft. It was discovered on 17 September 1789 by English astronomer William Herschel, and was named after Mimas, a son of Gaia in Greek mythology, by Herschel's son John. The large Herschel Crater is the dominating feature of the moon. With a diameter of 396 km (246 mi), it is the smallest astronomical body that is known to be rounded due to self-gravitation.

Photo: NASA/JPL/SSI
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September 18 - Tue

Picture of the day
African elephant

The term African elephant refers to elephants of the genus Loxodonta. Shown here is the African bush elephant (Loxodonta africana), one of two extant species and the largest living terrestrial animal, with males standing 3.2–4.0 m (10.5–13.1 ft) tall at the shoulder and weighing 4,700–6,048 kg (10,362–13,334 lb).

Photo: Ikiwaner
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September 19 - Wed

Picture of the day

An animation of creating a maze using a depth-first search maze generation algorithm, one of the simplest ways to generate a maze using a computer. Mazes generated in this manner have a low branching factor and contain many long corridors, which makes it good for generating mazes in video games. In these mazes, it will typically be relatively easy to find the origin point, since most paths lead to or from there, but it is hard to find the way out.

Animation: Purpy Pupple
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September 20 - Thu

Picture of the day
Blackback butterflyfish

The blackback butterflyfish (Chaetodon melannotus) is a species of butterflyfish found in the Red Sea, Indian Ocean, and western Pacific Ocean. When observed at night or when frightened, this species changes color; the dorsal portion of the body turns black except for two white patches. These oviparous fish are common on staghorn coral thickets, at depths of 4 to 20 m (13 to 66 ft).

Photo: Leonard Low/PLW
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September 21 - Fri

Picture of the day
Pointed Cortinarius mushroom

The pointed Cortinarius (Cortinarius vanduzerensis) is a species of mushroom found only in the Pacific Northwest region of North America. The fruit bodies have a slimy dark chestnut-brown cap that becomes deeply radially grooved or corrugated in maturity, and reaches diameters of up to 8 cm (3.1 in). The stem is lavender, measuring 10–18 cm (3.9–7.1 in) long and 1–2 cm (0.4–0.8 in) thick. The edibility of the mushroom has not been determined, and it has been described as "much too slippery to be of value".

Photo: John Kirkpatrick
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September 22 - Sat

Picture of the day
Batak warriors

Batak warriors in 1870. The term "Batak" is used to collectively identify a number of ethnic groups predominantly found in North Sumatra, Indonesia. It includes the Toba, Karo, Pakpak, Simalungun, Angkola and Mandailing, each of which are distinct but related groups with distinct, albeit related, languages and customs (adat).

Photo: Kristen Feilberg; Restoration: Peter Weis
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September 23 - Sun

Picture of the day
Greyhound racing

Greyhound racing is a sport similar to horse racing where greyhounds, which have been bred primarily for coursing and racing, chase a lure around a track. Greyhounds can accelerate to 70 km/h (43 mph) within six strides. The sport was invented in 1919 in the United States and has since spread to a number of countries.

Photo: AngMoKio
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September 24 - Mon

Picture of the day
Black rhinoceros skull

The skull of a black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis), a critically endangered species of rhinoceros native to eastern and central Africa. The two horns on the skull are made of keratin, with the larger front horn typically 50 cm (20 in) long. Sometimes, a third, smaller horn may develop.

Photo: Jebulon
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September 25 - Tue

Picture of the day
Welcome Swallow

The Welcome Swallow (Hirundo neoxena) is a small passerine bird in the swallow family found in Australia and nearby islands, including New Zealand. It is about 15 cm (6 in) long, metallic blue-black in colour above, light grey below on the breast and belly, and rusty on the forehead, throat and upper breast.

Photo: JJ Harrison
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September 26 - Wed

Picture of the day
Marine Iguana

The marine iguana (Amblyrhynchus cristatus) is an iguana found only on the Galápagos Islands that has the ability, unique among modern lizards, to live and forage in the sea, making it a marine reptile. It can dive over 10 m (33 ft) deep and mainly lives on the rocky coasts, but can also be spotted in marshes and mangrove beaches.

Photo: Benjamint444
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September 27 - Thu

Picture of the day
Lutetium

Pieces of sublimed dendritic lutetium, as well as an argon arc remelted 1 cm3 cube of it for comparison. Lutetium is a hard, silvery-white rare earth metal which was discovered as an impurity in the mineral ytterbia. It is rare and expensive, and has few specific uses.

Photo: Alchemist-hp
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September 28 - Fri

Picture of the day
Geleucht, Halde Rheinpreußen, Germany

Geleucht, a memorial in the shape of a mining lamp on the Halde Rheinpreußen, a spoil tip in Moers, Germany. Designed by Otto Piene, the 28 m (92 ft) tall monument was constructed in 2007 and contains an observation deck at the top. The Halde Rheinpreußen is part of the Industrial Heritage Trail in the Ruhr area.

Photo: Carschten
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September 29 - Sat

Picture of the day
Wat Arun, Bangkok, Thailand

Wat Arun ("Temple of the Dawn") is a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand, across the river from the Grand Palace. It is named after Aruṇa, the Hindu god of the dawn, and was restored in the early 19th century during the reign of Rama II. Shown here is the entrance to the ordination hall.

Photo: D Ramey Logan
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September 30 - Sun

Picture of the day
Nordland Line

A NSB Di 4 diesel-electric locomotive hauling a passenger train on a stretch of unelectrified track of the Nordland Line of the Norwegian State Railways. Running between Trondheim and Bodø, the line is the longest in Norway, at approximately 729 km (453 mi), and is the only one in the country that crosses the Arctic Circle.

Photo: David Gubler
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Today is Monday, February 8, 2016; it is now 07:12 UTC