Archive for physics

Tuva or Bust: A Richard Feynman Adventure

Posted in interesting things that caught my attention, people to watch for, random, the universe will wreck you with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 04/01/2012 by alex c

Bowerbird #15: Autodidact Aerialist Aquarium

Posted in Bowerbird, music, poetry, the universe will wreck you with tags , , , , , , , , on 08/18/2011 by alex c

Witches were thought to anoint a chair or broomstick with the devil’s ointment, and after self‐application, would fly through the air to meet for devil worship at the sabbat. But it’s quite the opposite—we’re confirming that nature is much more subtle than what the obvious thing would be. Now, there are loopholes — there are always loopholes. This theory illustrates deficits in everything except some other things. Similar patterns occur in the wind flow downstream of airplane wings. How cool would it be to look down to see a falling star? They’re just a bit of glitzy filth, the mildew of globalization. Seems like a perfect situation for a heavy drug addict, right? Sometimes they are angry but it comes out as laughter. But because the brain primarily consists of connections, you have to think about whether you disrupted some kind of communication or cut faulty connections, not just a region. This is more preaching than could possibly be salubrious. Probably not recommended if you’re uncomfortable with the sight of recently dead people moving. The taste just kind of lingers in your teeth. So let’s just say the physics community remains skeptical about the real-world potential for true antigravity devices.


Dancing Pendulum Snake

Posted in interesting things that caught my attention, the universe will wreck you with tags , , , on 06/02/2011 by alex c

I’ve already watched this several times, it’s mesmerizing. There’s a beautiful, inaudible music displayed in the patterns if you imagine each length as a different tone or instrument. After watching the unit as a whole, try to focus on one and note how the others operate around it.

As BadAstronomer Phil Plait points out, a pendulum’s period is determined not by the mass at its end, but the total length of the pendulum itself. The pattern that emerges from the variation of lengths across these 15 pendulums is a great example of complexity arising from simplicity.

A helpful commenter there also linked directions to make your own (pdf warning).