Thursday, June 28, 2012

Good news

From Huff post --  They agreed to collaborate on a follow-up to "Cosmos," Sagan's acclaimed 1980 miniseries, with MacFarlane serving as producer. Astrophysicst Neil deGrasse Tyson will host the series, which is scheduled to begin production this fall. --


Edvard Munch

I have only known Munch through The Scream.  Ignoring his body of work was a terrible mistake.  I love this work, very like a visual Poe.  

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Black holes, holographic gravity, and dirty jokes

As I read the comments following the video on the above link regarding black holes and holographic gravity, I was struck by two facts.  First, no one gave me a hint as to what  could induce a two dimensional set of data smeared across a theoretical, event horizon-like limit to our universe to project that data inward and thus create the reality we all experience and of which we are a part.  Second, I was disappointed in the number of adolescent sexual giggle fests over the term, " black hole".  

I posted the following comments:

  In the flood of comments, may I interject a question?  Assuming that holographic gravity is an accurate model of reality, what takes the place of the photons which cause the two dimentional pattern to project a three dimentional image?  I am not opposed to the concept of our perceived reality being such a projection, but can't conceive of an answer for this element of the picture.

Oh, and as a matter of historical interest, Russian physicists were appalled at the adoption of the term, "black hole" as it actually did have a pre-existing crude sexual meaning in their language.

Does anyone out there have an answer to my question?

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Tabletop X-ray Laser

From the LATimes:  --After more than half a century of research, the world's first
tabletop X-ray laser has been created an international team  of physicists, a development that promises to bring new  understanding to wide areas of chemistry and biology. --
And the weapons long dreamed of by sci fi  authors.  X -ray lasers have the potential to be the " blasters" of early sci fi, but only of they can be made small enough...

How about a lone infantryman using a single shot from a handgun to take out a main battle tank? Interesting thought...

And does the Second Amendment allow individuals to own what could justifiably be called a super weapon?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Super Nova?

From the Huff Post:  -- Betelgeuse, one of the night sky's brightest stars, is losing mass, indicating it is collapsing. It could run out of fuel and go super-nova at any time.--

But NASA says, --There is no reason to think the supergiant star Betelgeuse will become a supernova anytime soon, and when it does explode, it is too far away to hurt us.--

So, it looks like the Big B will go supernova soon, as long as " soon" means in the next 10,000 years.  There are changes to the star, but it is a variable star.  Such changes may just be part of its normal cycle.  If it did go supernova, it would be thrilling and sad.  Thrilling because we would see this amazing event; sad because there goes a beautiful friend in Orion.