Nuggets

Things to gawk at on the internets:

  • Remember the String Kings? Then you’ll love the Director’s Cut, brought to you by Steven Miller.
  • Remember that the cell is like Tron? There’s a Director’s Cut of the Inner Life of a Cell video as well, with commentary and all that. (Thanks to many people for letting me know.)
  • Construct a Heptadecagon with nought but compass and straightedge! That’s a seventeen-sided polygon, for those of you keeping score at home. Wikipedia shows you how. Heptadecagon
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9 Responses to Nuggets

  1. Pingback: Science After Sunclipse

  2. mollishka says:

    Too bad they don’t do something clever like highlight the final heptadecagon in blue or something.

  3. Neil B. says:

    Well, this thread is going a bit slow, so maybe I can put in my own two cents of Internet notoriety. You can decide how gawk-worthy it is; there aren’t any pictures or diagrams but it perplexes the understanding. Google for “Quantum measurement paradox” and some threads I started show up, because of where posted and all the academic folks that pitched in (some of whom seem to have linked from their own school sites, etc.) I am proud to be tops in an important subject search (anyone can sit top with an unusual name, etc.) The best thread is one I started on 10.31.00 on the high-quality (usually) NG sci.physics.research, moderator in chief at the time being the noted John Baez. The title was, “New quantum measurement paradox?” The basic point, now that I’ve found a better way to make it: if we could somehow get a polarized photon to enter over and over again through a half-wave plate (which reverses its state of circular polarization, but keeps the form of it – linear stays linear, elliptical or circular has the proportions of RH and LF reversed), we should be able to collect enough angular momentum to measure the intermediate spin tendency of single photons. I mean, a linear would register 0% of the max, an elliptical some percent of the 2n*hbar registered from a circular photon, etc., where n is the number of passes. (We need to keep reversing the photon’s spin of course, with another HWP, before each re-entry through the detector HWP.) Since the HWP simply reverses the proportions of RH and LH in the WF, it should be able to accumulate that angular momentum along a continuum. (Using one “elliptical photon” 1,000,000 times should be like sending 1,000,000 elliptical photons through the same HWP, and we already know that the latter would have such a result. Note that HWPs don’t “collapse” traversing photons into either RH or LH photons, despite collecting angular momentum during multiple interactions.)
    Of course I got a lot of flak from those who said we shouldn’t be able to find that out. (The conventional postulate says that we can only get yes-no response based on probabilities derived from the basis states, not the amount of circular polarization itself.) I don’t think there were any clear winners in the argument. It was a good free for all. Check it out; it makes for some interesting reading, IMHO.

  4. Mike says:

    My favorite cell animations were done by Drew Berry for the DNAi Project. You can see videos of his work at http://www.wehi.edu.au/education/wehi-tv/dna/index.html. Scroll to the bottom of the page for links to the videos. I especially like the DNA replication and DNA transcription videos, which are illustrated in real time!. For edited versions of these videos, with narration (but at a lower frame rate, which really takes away from the animation), dig around on the DNAi web site.

  5. Analyzer says:

    That should be “regular heptadecagon.” Anybody can make a non-regular one. 🙂

  6. Count Iblis says:

    All the “2^m times Product over distinct Fermat primes” gons can be constructed. 🙂

    Fermat primes are prime numbers the form
    2^(2^n) + 1.

  7. wolfgang says:

    A physics nugget: The Gravity Probe B team just announced preliminary results.

  8. Count Iblis says:

    A physics nugget: The Gravity Probe B team just announced preliminary results

    Results due december 2007??? They have been analyzing their data for ages already. 🙁

  9. wolfgang says:

    Count Iblis,

    the final results are due in december, but several years of data analysis is a short time compared to decades of preparation 😎