“We Are Living In Exponential Times”

From the following video comes a perspective on technology that illustrates the rapid, exponential pace of change since the 1990s – a pace unlike anything human beings have ever experienced. The video ends with: “What does it all mean?” A very good question, don’t you think?

Discovered on Dominik Deobald’s blog here:

Did You Know?

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An Unmistakable Sign of Spring

Earlier this week, I was working on some of my typical spring photographs – buds and blooms from throughout my garden – when I took a short break, went outside, and immediately felt like I was being watched. Well, I was being watched, by the nemesis whose reappearance every spring has me overplanting my pond, surrounding it with pots and wire trellises, and taking frequent headcounts of my poor carp that just want to be left to swim and eat in peace. It’s a blue heron, either the same one or certainly a relative of those that have been visiting my neighborhood – so I’ve been told – for at least a decade. “Blue heron” is surely a fine name for a big bird, but I prefer “Pond Monster” – a better reflection of our relationship.

It flew off my roof before I could get my camera out; in these shots, it’s perched on the front peak of my neighbors house.

Pond Monster 1

Click the picture for a wider version; something about those eyes…. you know you’re being evaluated as potential snack when those things turn toward you.

Pond Monster 2

This isn’t a great shot, but it’s the only one I’ve ever gotten of the bird in flight. That wingspan has to be six to eight feet, maybe more. Can you say pterodactyl? Those dangling “fingers” are a nice touch, eh?

Pond Monster 3

Happy Spring!

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On The Large Hadron Collider

I have to admit that even after reading several articles about it, I still don’t understand enough about the Large Hadron Collider to write an intelligent-sounding post. Physics, chemistry, astronomy — and anything that smacks of having even a distant relationship to math or calculus — don’t get past the internal censors in my head. I have enormous respect for people who do understand this stuff … I’m in awe of them, really … and this colossal experiment apparently has significance to these sciences that will be felt for many, many years.

So, here are a few related articles and sites that I came across yesterday:

From Computerworld:

Collider test called a ‘great milestone of mankind’ – “Today’s successful test run of a massive particle collider is being called ‘one of the great engineering milestones of mankind.’ On Wednesday morning, just outside of Geneva, scientists shot a particle beam fully around a 17-mile loop in the world’s most powerful particle accelerator — the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). Twenty years after development of the collider began, a particle beam made the full journey around the accelerator for the first time. It’s a forebear to the time when scientists will accelerate two particle beams toward each other at 99.9% of the speed of light….”

Also from Popular Science:

It’s Christmas for Physicists! – “If you somehow managed to avoid seeing the comic, listening to the rap or reading anything in the all out media blitz, then let me be the first to tell you that earlier today the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world’s most power particle accelerator, began operation. Scientists hope that the experiments conducted in the $9 billion dollar accelerator will help them discover the mysterious Higgs boson. The Higgs boson, colloquially referred to as the ‘God particle,’ is the hypothetical particle that imbues matter with mass, and finding it (or not finding it) will have profound implications on the world of physics….”

And from the Boston Globe’s consistently excellent photography blog, The Big Picture, a series of images of the collider inside and out, here:

Large Hadron Collider nearly ready.

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