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What is this? Number 2

Here is my plan. Post a “what is this” on every Friday until I run out of things. I will post the answer on Tuesday. Maybe we should start keeping points. You get more points for being the first one to get it right. You lose points for getting it wrong. Last week was easy,…

What if everyone jumped?

Might as well jump. Jump. Go ahead, jump. – Van Halen Suppose everyone in the world got together and jumped. Would the Earth move? Yes. Would it be noticeable? Time for a calculation. Note: I am almost certain that I have done this before, but I can’t find where. Starting assumptions. 7 billion people. Average…

How tall is that UFO?

You know I wander around the intertubes, right? Who doesn’t? Anyway, I saw this collection of strange google Earth images. Yeah, it is kind of dumb, but this one made me think: That article said the image was from TechEBlog, so there is that. I have no idea what this thing is, but it is…

Variation in throwing a ball

I might as well make a new tag called “basketball throws” because I can’t stop with the analysis of these crazy basketball shots. Watch – in the end someone is going to post a video about how all these were faked (and I have said there is no clear evidence they are fake). Oh, if…

What is this #1: Answer

Perhaps you have had enough time to think about the first “What is this” demo item. Here is the item in question. It seems most of you were right on track with this one – probably because you can still buy such a device. This thingy launches a small ball horizontally while at the same…

New Game: What is this item?

Let’s play a game. I think this will be fun. So, a couple of years ago I had the duty of organizing the physics demo room (well, “demo” is maybe not the best term). This room is quite large and there is a whole bunch of stuff in here, some of the items are very…

More basketball analysis

Reader Jorge has also looked at these amazing basketball shots. (here is my last basketball analysis) Jorge claims that at least one shot seems fake. He is referring to the following video (at around the 2:20 mark). ARRGH Ok, new plan. For some dumb reason, youtube won’t let me embed this video. Well, here is…

Let me start with the video. Here is a guy flying a plane in a barrel roll and pouring some tea at the same time. Talk about multitasking. How can he pour upside down? Well, there are two ways to look at this. First, I can look at this in the frame of the plane.…

Videos and traditional lecture

I see that Doug at Nanoscale Views has fond memories of the hit show The Mechanical Universe. If you have never seen this show, it is quite excellent (even if old). Perhaps the best thing about The Mechanical Universe is that it might be the best that traditional lecturing can provide. Oh, I know it…

More on turning and braking

I can’t let it go. There is more here to explore. First, I can’t believe that I looked at braking and then turning but not turning then braking. And what about braking while turning? I will model braking and then turning – but it won’t stop here. Consider a few motions. I could turn and…