25 Sep 2010 @ 06:18, by erlefrayne. Science
For this day I chose to peregrinate on the 3-Gorges Dam of China, a project that cost a whopping $23 Billion to build. The eco-fascist detractors of the project raised the specter of catastrophe that could result from a collapse of the dam infrastructure, so maybe its time to reflect about the giant energy project. More >
23 Sep 2010 @ 21:37, by feecor. Science
Just returning from the "Show" / Schau „Weltwissen“
„Weltwissen“ in the Martin Gropius-Bau.
Unfortunatley it only a historic exhibition which puts Berlin as the center of the scientific world. Well done ! high quality, ... but what a hybris.... and sooo one-eyed.
Tired now ! but I think it is time to present more under such an heading !
I feel it is time to review the 100 - 200 - 300 years celebrations in Berlin. Maybe there is more than just looking back, and maintaining one viewpopint...
Die WUNDERKAMMER and thinking in boxes is a deep concern of mine - as some of my readers know. Questions? Maybe see: NEW RENNAISANCE below - or start with this publication: [link] (PDF) and this forthcomming publciation on COMPASSION and IGNORANCE: [link] (PDF)
PLEASE COME BACK ! as times are busy these days...
27 Sep 2007 @ 00:46, by ming. Science
Doesn't really say much, but that's good news. Breibart:
Parallel universes really do exist, according to a mathematical discovery by Oxford scientists described by one expert as "one of the most important developments in the history of science".
The parallel universe theory, first proposed in 1950 by the US physicist Hugh Everett, helps explain mysteries of quantum mechanics that have baffled scientists for decades, it is claimed.
In Everett's "many worlds" universe, every time a new physical possibility is explored, the universe splits. Given a number of possible alternative outcomes, each one is played out - in its own universe.
A motorist who has a near miss, for instance, might feel relieved at his lucky escape. But in a parallel universe, another version of the same driver will have been killed. Yet another universe will see the motorist recover after treatment in hospital. The number of alternative scenarios is endless.
It is a bizarre idea which has been dismissed as fanciful by many experts. But the new research from Oxford shows that it offers a mathematical answer to quantum conundrums that cannot be dismissed lightly - and suggests that Dr Everett, who was a Phd student at Princeton University when he came up with the theory, was on the right track.
Commenting in New Scientist magazine, Dr Andy Albrecht, a physicist at the University of California at Davis, said: "This work will go down as one of the most important developments in the history of science."
Actually it doesn't tell us anything about what they figured out. But there is a parallel universe somewhere, in which that would have been a more informative article. And there's another one where I would have been able to understand the math in that more informative article.
Now, the next question is: Does the universe split all the time, in all possible directions, or only on special occasions, like just before you buy lottery tickets, or when you're leaning out the window in a tall building? I'd say it does it all the time, but that the idea of "splitting" gives the completely wrong idea. It is just a matter of having enough dimensions. Does the North/South compass direction split into East or West in millions of places? That's an equally silly question. If you're walking North, you're free to stop at any time and walk East, and you're free to walk back and go SouthWest. The place you came from didn't disappear just because you left it. That's the magic of being able to move in two dimensions. Parallel universes is just the same kind of thing, and only sounds magical because we folks are dimensionally challenged. We think we're walking in just one direction, even though we're changing tracks all the time. And of course there are multiple choices of tracks in a great many places. Whether there's somebody who took all the possible paths is, I think, a question that math alone will not solve. The universe doesn't need to split, because it has plenty of dimensions. But what about you - do you split? More >
19 Jul 2007 @ 05:19, by jhs. Science
Contemplating the irony of fate of two of my greatest heroes (and I don't have many, sorry to say), Nikola Tesla and Wilhelm Reich they are, both to arrive in the Land of the Free, only to die in disgrace after giving to mankind some of the greatest, greatest gifts in its history.
Preparing for the showdown: the UNSEALING of the books of Wilhelm Reich 50 years after his sudden death (how come??) in an American prison, a few days before his release from a ridiculous sentence in, again, the Land of the Free (or so they say in best Orwellian tradition).
Just to be sure, the FDA burned his books and his machines in 1956 (how low can a nation sink?), in the best tradition of the Catholic Church, just recently asserting being the ONLY true Church, what a shame...let's burn those witches, alright...
It makes me contemplate, another time yet, the pain of humans condemning exactly what would help them. Help buttons, yeah, I hear some cry out loud... but what I am contemplating here is the tragedy of the drowning fool who spits on a life vest in disgust because he KNOWS, he KNOWS, a life vest is a superstitious gadget of no real use, because he thinks he knows it all, because he read the news, of course, the news, those news, that tell everything a real man has to know to be happy by telling him all the other shit that is happening around the world at this time. Except, of course, giving a hint, or two, may be, that HE HIMSELF is a SLAVE.
So, to spare all of those who think who still need to write. wasting precious electronic bits, YES, I AM STILL ALIVE, even though I am living just 50+ km (30 miles) East of Sao Paulo. Indeed, I did NOT burn in those ashes of TAM.
Interestingly enough, I passed by Congonhas a few hours earlier, explaining my better half the function of the landing fires that are visible from the freeway approaching the airport, wondering why they were not constantly flashing as they do in Burbank or at LAX.
So, I returned to the jungle in the High Sierra, with few monkeys around (even though they still manage to make a hellish noise), wondering if someone would ever send me an email on the occasion of the worldwide news that a man and a woman having made cosmic love.
In the meantime. my respects to the global news to make sure a tragedy spreads around the world faster than a local would ever know.
Reminds me of that '93 (I think) earthquake in LA. My mother woke me up in the morning, calling me from Germany, informing me of the 'disaster' while I was still happily dreaming along in the Hollywood Hills (Studio City side, to be precise).
Or, some years later, her orders to evacuate immediately because of the San Diego fires (some 50 miles south of there, for non-cals).
Holy cow, I WAS NOT IN THAT AIRPLANE, folks, thanks for your concern!
The last time I flew from Porto Alegre to Sao Paulo Congonhas was on September 7th 2001 with connection to LA scheduled to arrive on 9/11 at 8:50 PST. Alright, alright, I winded up in Tijuana, not the first time, and took a bus to LA because the borders were closed to air traffic.
But that's another story.
End of rant for today. Cheerio...
Going back to wrapping me in layers of metallic and isolating materials... gotta be prepared for REICH DAY (Nov 7) !!!! More >
30 Jun 2007 @ 23:36, by swanny. Science
June 30, 2007
Synthetic life soon....
Word is out that scientist are only a short way away from
creating synthetic life forms,
well thanks I think but
I was somewhat afraid of this but at the same time
I don't think they or we have the ability to create anything much more complex
that a simple thing and thats what worries me. trying to mimic the process of
creation and evolution without the wisdom and experience and even ability to
compute the enormous amount of variables seems a bit of a fools errand.
and even if we could .... should we? and why
we don't even seem to do a very good job with the obligations and stewardship
of a fairly simple task of not destroying the planet and each other so why think we could handle something even more difficult and onerous. Do these egg heads really want the credit for unleashing potential hell on earth or ?. Im told the way they decide such things is to guage whether the benefit would exceed the damage. it just a bit of an unknown though. would this be or is this beneficial or detrimentary. and how could you know at this stage and if we don't really know do we really want to get into experimenting on ourselves and the planet again can't we just take a break for a few thousand years and tidy up the mess we made to this point.
so id say nix to it.... no more experiments on us and the planet..... been there done that..... Moratorium this till some future occurence. Im tired of trying to pick up sciences messes... theres so darn irresponsible and short sighted sometimes.
Here is a story told through quotes, comments and links related to
commonsense (naive) realism, epistemology, materialism, information
theoretic metaphysics, consciousness, empirical science, mysticism,
holistic science and also system theory. There's some fascinating
links to profound experiments into the nature of consciousness if you
don't already know about them... (The PEAR REG/GCP experiments)
Skepticism "is the application of reason to any and all ideas
- no sacred cows allowed... Ideally, skeptics do not go into an
investigation closed to the possibility that a phenomenon might be
real or that a claim might be true. When we say we are 'skeptical' we
mean that we must see compelling evidence before we believe."
Furthermore "To some degree skepticism manifests itself in
the scientific method, which demands that all things assumed as facts
be questioned. But the positivism of many scientists, whether latent
or open, is incompatible with skepticism, for it accepts without
question the assumption that material effect is impossible without
material cause." (The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia
So materialism is NOT a skeptical position to take - because it is
based upon the unquestioned assumption and belief in the primacy of
matter. If people were to question it and not simply assert their
beliefs it could be a skeptical position but any deep questioning
soon shows it to be unable to withstand such questioning.
Commonsense (Naive) Realism
"Naïve realism is a common sense theory of perception.
Most people, until they start reflecting philosophically, are naïve
realists. This theory is also known as "direct realism" or
"common sense realism". Naïve realism claims that the
world is pretty much as common sense would have it. All objects are
composed of matter, they occupy space, and have properties such as
size, shape, texture, smell, taste and colour. [It is assumed that]
These properties are usually perceived correctly. So, when we look at
and touch things we see and feel those things directly, and so
perceive them as they really are."
In its most common form a naive realist thinks "I ... am a
human being. There is this one physical world, the space where
everything exists and the time in which everything happens. There are
many things in this physical world, each largely separate from the
other and persisting over a span of time... My senses give me direct
knowledge of reality. If I see a chair, it is because there is a
chair physically where and when I see it. There are exceptions, like
when I am dreaming or watching a movie, but these are rare and
obviously not real. I can know things through my senses, through
thinking about things, and through communication with other people.
Other people's beliefs may be correct or not, but beliefs of people I
respect, and beliefs held commonly by most people in my society, are
It is a general tendency of naive realists to be unaware that
their beliefs are in fact beliefs. They consider them to simply be
obvious facts about the way things are. This is because they have not
yet questioned their beliefs. They are naive believers but they often
also believe that they are skeptical. It is a habitual credulous
state of mind and the habit can be very hard to overcome.
"Karl Popper (1970) pointed out that although Hume’s
idealism appeared to him to be a strict refutation of commonsense
realism, and although he felt rationally obliged to regard
commonsense realism as a mistake, he admitted that he was, in
practice, quite unable to disbelieve in it for more than an hour:
that, at heart, Hume was a commonsense realist. [And] Edmund Husserl
(1970), saw the phenomenologist in Hume when he showed that some
perceptions are interrelated or associated to form other perceptions
which are then projected onto a world putatively outside the mind."
I.e. objects which are assumed to comprise the "external
world" are really objects of perception. To attribute them with
external reality is an act of belief for which there is no rational
basis. More >
25 Apr 2007 @ 14:17, by ming. Science PhysicsWeb. I'm not sure I understand it well, but the scientific discussion seems to be on whether there are hidden variables in the universe that make reality exist in a consistent way, even when nobody's looking at it. And whether the universe is basically local or non-local. "Local" would mean that one can separate events completely from each other, so that they can't instantenously influence other events.
Markus Aspelmeyer, Anton Zeilinger and colleagues from the University of Vienna, however, have now shown that realism is more of a problem than locality in the quantum world. They devised an experiment that violates a different inequality proposed by physicist Anthony Leggett in 2003 that relies only on realism, and relaxes the reliance on locality. To do this, rather than taking measurements along just one plane of polarization, the Austrian team took measurements in additional, perpendicular planes to check for elliptical polarization.
They found that, just as in the realizations of Bell's thought experiment, Leggett's inequality is violated – thus stressing the quantum-mechanical assertion that reality does not exist when we're not observing it. "Our study shows that 'just' giving up the concept of locality would not be enough to obtain a more complete description of quantum mechanics," Aspelmeyer told Physics Web. "You would also have to give up certain intuitive features of realism."
Sounds like they're saying that experiements really do confirm that reality isn't real unless somebody's looking at it, and that everything is instantanously connected with everything else, so you can't isolate any piece of anything and claim that it has a real existence, separate from everything else, and seperate from who's observing it. I sort of figured as much, but it sounds good if they're rocking the boat a bit by proving it. More >
27 Mar 2007 @ 10:30, by swanny. Science
March 27, 2007
The New Antinomy
Well went searching for the laws of quantum physics and though they seem to get a lot of press there was no agreement on what they were and no place they could be found.
Is it thus "logic" or "weird"....?????
No agreement there and some purport it is "logical and weird" at the same time. Well thats just great.
Logical and weird at the same time well how insane are we to tolerate...? Or is this the new "reality" or new "TRUTH" logic and weirdness living in harmony.
Well most irreconcileable to those of practical and conservative natures.
Logical and weird at the same time well how conveinent and intolerable but then perhaps but even such must have some basic "laws"...otherwise would it not be total anarchy at will?
So then what are the "laws" of simultaneous "logic and weirdness" well we will have to take a fall back position and apply Mosaic Law in the intern... For now thus
the ten commandments are the "Laws of Logical Weirdness" until further notice.