Archives for August, 2013

Weekend Diversion: Reason Enough

“[F]or those of us who can’t readily accept the God formula, the big answers don’t remain stone-written. We adjust to new conditions and discoveries. We are pliable. Love need not be a command nor faith a dictum. I am my own god. We are here to unlearn the teachings of the church, state, and our…

What does the Universe really look like?

“On a cosmic scale, our life is insignificant, yet this brief period when we appear in the world is the time in which all meaningful questions arise.” –Paul Ricoeur Ask anyone who’s looked up at a dark sky on a clear, moonless night, and you’ll immediately hear tales about how incomprehensibly vast the Universe is.…

The Physicist’s Dream Machine

“It is no good to try to stop knowledge from going forward. Ignorance is never better than knowledge.” -Enrico Fermi As you probably know, the Large Hadron Collider — site of discovery of the last fundamental particle in the Standard Model, the Higgs Boson — is the most energetic particle accelerator in the history of…

“There is an ancient saying among men that you cannot thoroughly understand the life of mortals before the man has died, then only can you call it good or bad.” -Sophocles Imagine looking up at the night sky — able to survey the full depths of space — with eyes the size of saucers instead…

Weekend Diversion: Axe Cop

“I’ll chop your head off!” –Axe Cop What games did you play with your imagination as a little kid? Did you make up stories involving muppets? Horses? Cartoon characters? Cowboys and… native americans? Or, as the Hoosiers would sing, Cops And Robbers? Well, if ever any of that amused you, have I got a discovery for…

“Next to reasoning, the greatest handicap to the optimum development of Man lies in the fact that this planet is just barely habitable. Its minimum temperatures are too low, and its maximum temperatures too high. Its day is not long enough, and its night is too long… These factors encourage depression, fear, war, and lack…

“What was most significant about the lunar voyage was not that men set foot on the Moon, but that they set eye on the Earth.” –Norman Cousins What would life on Earth be like without the Moon? Our nearest neighboring body in the cosmos has a profound effect on us. It’s helped not only shape…

“Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence.” –Robert Frost Middle school — or junior high, which we called it when I went — should really be classified as a form of child abuse. I recognize that it isn’t as bad for everyone as it was for…

“Beauty is a manifestation of secret natural laws, which otherwise would have been hidden from us forever.” –Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Welcome back to another Messier Monday here on Starts With A Bang! Each Monday, we go through one of the 110 deep-sky wonders of the Messier Catalogue, some of the brightest and most prominent of the…

“My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four. Unless there are three other people.” -Orson Welles I just completed my 35th trip around the Sun yesterday, which was a great time! But, it got me thinking, has my time in this world resulted in a build-up of toxic substances in my body?…