Me at Gizmodo:
How Physics Can Make You a Master Ribbon Curler. "Most of us know how to get a ribbon to curl, by swiftly pulling a scissor blade across the surface. You’ve probably heard that the faster you do this, the tighter the curl. Physics begs to differ. A slower movement—combined with a sharp blade and just the right amount of tension on the ribbon—produces optimal curls, according to the latest experiments by an international team of physicists."
The Science of Using a Damn Coaster When You Are a Guest in This House--or, Why Whisky Rings Are Different from Coffee Rings. "A few years ago, a Phoenix-based photographer teamed up with physicists at Princeton University to explore the unusually uniform rings a drop of whisky leaves behind when it dries. Now those same physicists have published their findings in Physical Review Letters." [Image: Ernie Button]
The Same Rules Apply to Elephants and E. Coli. Biologist Sean B. Carroll Argues for Universal Rules That Regulate Life at All Size Scales. "On the surface, herds of zebras roaming the Serengeti don’t seem to have much in common with the number of cells in our bodies. But what if there is an underlying hidden logic behind it all—a set of universal rules regulating the numbers of things that applies across all size scales? That’s the provocative thesis behind The Serengeti Rules: The Quest To Discover How Life Works and Why It Matters, the latest book from renowned biologist Sean B. Carroll. Gizmodo recently caught up with Carroll to learn more about this intriguing idea."
Wind Down Your Day by Watching These Pennies Melt Under the Sun's Intense Heat. "The Internet is a wonderful place. Case in point: there’s an entire YouTube channel called Let’s Melt This, devoted to videos of, well, stuff melting. In the latest installment, the team placed two pennies under a Fresnel lens to see how long it would take for them to melt under the concentrated heat of the sun."
Four Sets of Identical Twins Staged a Time Travel Prank on an NYC Subway. "Most NYC subway riders are pretty blasé when panhandlers hit them up for cash between stations. When a panhandler announced he was collecting funds to build a time machine, riders chuckled at the odd request—until another man boarded the train and announced he was the inventor’s future self. He implored them not to give any money because time travel will ruin everything. It sounds just like that X-Files episode (“Synchrony”) where a scientist travels from the future to stop his younger self from making the cryobiological compound that will one day enable time travel. But it’s actually an elaborate prank by Improv Everywhere:
Other Cool Links:
How Cold Atoms Might Help Physicists Understand Superconductors.
Crumpled Graphene Can Be Even Better Than the Flat Stuff.
The Long-Awaited Promise of a Programmable Quantum Computer. Related: This Chip Could Finally Make a Real Quantum Computer. Also: Getting a Fix on Quantum Computation. "The quest to fix quantum errors has improve(d) our understanding of other areas of physics."
Scientists Discover That James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake Has an Amazingly Mathematical “Multifractal” Structure.
The Physics of Pokemon: Charizard’s flamethrower has more energy behind it than a thousand lightning bolts.
The next big LHC upgrade? Software.
CERN physicist Edda Gschwendtner explains why we need big machines to study tiny particles.
New insights from neuroscience — aided by dancing animals — are revealing the biological origins of rhythm.
Sure, Superman Has X-Ray Vision. But How Would It Actually Work?
Soot And Diamonds: Progress And Perspective In The Practice Of Physics.
How physics and maths helped create modernist painting.
Sonification: Scientific data might be filled with important things waiting to be discovered. Just listen to them.
Why Did the Air Force Play with Cats in Space?
19 Times Someone Gets Thrown Into the Vacuum of Space, From Worst to Best.
Scientists May Have Spotted Buried Lava Tubes on the Moon.
Astronomers saw an exploding star’s shockwave for the first time ever.
The Most Detailed Gravity Maps of Mars Let Us Peer Inside the Planet.
NASA’s New Top Astrobiologist Is Spelunking for Alien Life on Earth.
Infinity Inside the Finite: Newtons Solution.
Bigger Than Chaos: Q&A with Philosopher Michael Strevens on complexity, probability theory, and more.
Is it possible to algorithmically distinguish different novelists based only on their punctuation habits?
Three Revolutionary Women of Mathematics.
You Can Solve Quantum Mechanics’ Classic Particle in a Box Problem With Code.
Dead Bodies Light the Way in This Biofuel-Powered Cemetery: Decomposition is converted to electricity.
Amid a Graying Fleet of Nuclear Plants, a Hunt for Solutions. Related: Do The Majority of Americans Oppose Nuclear Energy? Maybe Not. Also: Everything you need to know about mini nuclear reactors. Finally, Why Nuclear Fusion Is Always 30 Years Away.
Solar installations are soaring, but production is still very small.
Callum Ormond explains, TEDxly, how they learned to partially unboil an egg.
A Demo of Babbage's Difference Engine.
Echo Observatory: beautiful, tactile fractal explorer with knobs on.
Why Physicists Want Their Best Theory To Fail.
How a Nobel Laureate introduced students to physics.
Challenger Engineer Who Warned Of Shuttle Disaster Dies.
War of Currents, A Shocking Arcade Game Where Nikola Tesla & Thomas Edison Face Off in a Street Fighter Style Battle.
Science in the World of Islam, 1: The Syllable Al.
Meet the largest science project in US government history—the James Webb Telescope.
Slowing Down In Space Is Easier With Yo-Yos.
You Can Now Build Giant Space Telescopes Out of LEGOs.
A Cambridge professor on how to stop being so easily manipulated by misleading statistics.
"If you like math, dominoes, and/or solving problems the hard way, this video is for you."
How Ballerinas Can Keep Spinning Forever: