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« break out the bubbly | Main | from pole to pole... to pole? »


Here's another fascinating practical application of interference and colors:

via Qualcomm, formerly Iridigm.

The hazards of nanoparticles have been vastly overstated in my opinion. Every time someone walks across a carpet or scratches their scalp, I bet that huge quantities of nanometer-scale particles are created. Auto exhaust must be full of nanoparticles. In other words, if nanoparticles are nothing new, why all the fuss?

I can't let the opportunity pass to plug Kurt Nassau's wonderful book, _The Physics and Chemistry of Color_. There are more causes of color than almost any non-specialist would guess. The book is well written and well illustrated and would make a great gift for anyone who knows enough physics to read this blog.

One of the great things about iridescence it that it lets you see small details easily. HINT. You're a physicist, so you know the red on black of your sidebar is harder to read than e.g. yellow on black would be. So how about changing your CSS to give us a legible sidebar please?

It wasn't that long ago that flat TV's were Sci Fi, now it is hard to get by without one. One wonders what the butterflies are communicating with those wings.

Jennifer, I hope you are planning to grace the American Association for Advancement of Science ( Feb 15-19. That is just before a book signing at Stacey's.

Firstly, Happy Belated New Year to you and that guy over at CV. He seems nice. ;-)

I like that you reminded me of "sprung rhythm." I, too, appreciate the romantics and neo-romantics exaltation of Nature despite that it's coupled with religious ecstasy, but I doubt that I need to qualify that to you: lovely poems are lovely poems.

Though these eye shadows and lipsticks may seem more "frivolous" fare, I find it interesting how everyday items incorporate nanoparticles. I'm not much for iridescent colors on my eyelids, but I might check that out to see the effect.

Stu, Jennifer is not a physicist; that you have that impression is to her credit, though. I agree, the sidebar has been a struggle to use. It's a little better on my new PC at work, but all the links are very dim (and I do use them a lot). I love red and black, but can you make them brighter? The brighter red headings are fine to read. Just adding my $.02.

Ste and TBB will be happy to hear that the site redesign is on;y temporary and we'll be going back to the old style as soon as I have a spare half hour to make the changes... :)

And yes, I'll be at the AAAS meeting next month in San Francisco... it's a huge meeting, but am sure I'll bump into folks from time to time!

Thank you for a great blog and for changing the colors, the red and black were giving me a headache.
Your blog is on my must read list. I am looking forward to listening to you at the CalTech lecture series in February. And of course, to meet you and get my books signed!
Thanks again for a wonderful blog.

Isn't opal technically a non-crystalline amorphous material?

Troubling the Glass

At dawn a west wind troubles the still waters of an inland lake

Awakening the deep.

Splashes of light like silent shouts glare
across the water. They started in a straight forward
way to cross the lake in the gathering dark
but the wind rippled water broke up the
attack and smeared out the forces of light
into a undulating wedge.

Carrying her dead like earrings.

Muddying the greens.

And always a mashed potatoe sky.

With some people it's the birds and the bees

but with you it's all buzzards and cane toads.

my cousin loves that pix

wow...this is very goood info for my research paper...i would be looking forward to seeing more things or information on this butterfly..well i think that i have seen this butterfly on this island where i'm from..
i'm from the island of is very beautiful here!i hope that one day you can come to my island...thanks♥fatima maria tainatongo barcinas

this is a cool butterfly pic and i will edmire it for the ret of my life.

Troubling the glass indeed...

Misery is a butterfly – Blonde Redhead

Dearest Jane I shouldve known better
But I couldnt say hello, I didnt know why
But now I think, I think you were sad
Yes you were, you were, you were

What I say, I say only to you
Cause I love and I love only you
Dearest Jane, I want to give you a dream
That no one has given you

Remember when we found misery
We watched her, watched her spread her wings
And slowly fly around our room
And she asked for your gentle mind

Misery is a butterfly
Her heavy wings will warp your mind
With her small ugly face
And her long antenna
And her black and pink heavy wings

Remember when we found misery
We watched her, watched her spread her wings
And slowly fly around our room
And she asked for your gentle mind

Torment fails to see the light
Pale indifference
Dark as light
Winter Beckons
Door open wide
No hesitation in letting it inside
Numb from reality’s cold
absence of warmth begins
to unfold
Cry out! Maybe someone will hear!!!
my only warmth is my blanket of
Will I survive, can I truly live this way?
or am I destined to die and
_ __ __

A Poem by Lori S. (not to be confused with L'oreal but interesting nonetheless) who is a Monarch Slave - and who has a blue morpho tat - and the dearest human I have ever known.

Please wake up and help, make yourself aware at least. Click on my name for the link to Monarch Programming. Thank you.

i really like this picture

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    Physics Cocktails

    • Heavy G
      The perfect pick-me-up when gravity gets you down.
      2 oz Tequila
      2 oz Triple sec
      2 oz Rose's sweetened lime juice
      7-Up or Sprite
      Mix tequila, triple sec and lime juice in a shaker and pour into a margarita glass. (Salted rim and ice are optional.) Top off with 7-Up/Sprite and let the weight of the world lift off your shoulders.
    • Listening to the Drums of Feynman
      The perfect nightcap after a long day struggling with QED equations.
      1 oz dark rum
      1/2 oz light rum
      1 oz Tia Maria
      2 oz light cream
      Crushed ice
      1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
      In a shaker half-filled with ice, combine the dark and light rum, Tia Maria, and cream. Shake well. Strain into an old fashioned glass almost filled with crushed ice. Dust with the nutmeg, and serve. Bongos optional.
    • Combustible Edison
      Electrify your friends with amazing pyrotechnics!
      2 oz brandy
      1 oz Campari
      1 oz fresh lemon juice
      Combine Campari and lemon juice in shaker filled with cracked ice. Shake and strain into chilled cocktail glass. Heat brandy in chafing dish, then ignite and pour into glass. Cocktail Go BOOM! Plus, Fire = Pretty!
    • Hiroshima Bomber
      Dr. Strangelove's drink of choice.
      3/4 Triple sec
      1/4 oz Bailey's Irish Cream
      2-3 drops Grenadine
      Fill shot glass 3/4 with Triple Sec. Layer Bailey's on top. Drop Grenadine in center of shot; it should billow up like a mushroom cloud. Remember to "duck and cover."
    • Mad Scientist
      Any mad scientist will tell you that flames make drinking more fun. What good is science if no one gets hurt?
      1 oz Midori melon liqueur
      1-1/2 oz sour mix
      1 splash soda water
      151 proof rum
      Mix melon liqueur, sour mix and soda water with ice in shaker. Shake and strain into martini glass. Top with rum and ignite. Try to take over the world.
    • Laser Beam
      Warning: may result in amplified stimulated emission.
      1 oz Southern Comfort
      1/2 oz Amaretto
      1/2 oz sloe gin
      1/2 oz vodka
      1/2 oz Triple sec
      7 oz orange juice
      Combine all liquor in a full glass of ice. Shake well. Garnish with orange and cherry. Serve to attractive target of choice.
    • Quantum Theory
      Guaranteed to collapse your wave function:
      3/4 oz Rum
      1/2 oz Strega
      1/4 oz Grand Marnier
      2 oz Pineapple juice
      Fill with Sweet and sour
      Pour rum, strega and Grand Marnier into a collins glass. Add pineapple and fill with sweet and sour. Sip until all the day's super-positioned states disappear.
    • The Black Hole
      So called because after one of these, you have already passed the event horizon of inebriation.
      1 oz. Kahlua
      1 oz. vodka
      .5 oz. Cointreau or Triple Sec
      .5 oz. dark rum
      .5 oz. Amaretto
      Pour into an old-fashioned glass over (scant) ice. Stir gently. Watch time slow.