Train driver’s view

Probably because I associate trains with holidays when we were growing up I love trains. One time many years ago I even got to ride a diesel-electric locomotive hauling a passenger train in India — a rare treat. Thanks to YouTube, these days you can get a virtual ride in a locomotive. My favorite train-driver’s view channel is one that goes by the handle HinduCowGirl.

The driver is a Norwegian lady, who I believe is also a sky-diving instructor. She has heaps of videos of the trains she drives. I confess that I spend an inordinate amount of time watching them. All of them are pre-recorded since they don’t have the internet connectivity to live-stream the videos but many are streamed with live chat. It’s fun to hang out with others who share the love of trains. OK, so here’s one of those videos.
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What about that Higgs boson?

The last time I had mentioned the Higgs boson in connection with the naming of the particle. But what is the Higgs boson? Particle physics is hard to comprehend because it deals with the extremely small. We, middle-sized creatures, are not equipped to comprehend the infinitesimally small or the infinitely large. Moreover, them itty-bitty things lie in the domain of quantum mechanics — which according to Feynman, if you believe you understand QM then it means that you actually don’t. QM is useful but incomprehensible. Thus, human comprehension is not a precondition for human utility. Also, although there’s little utility in it, attempting to comprehend advances in high energy physics can be fun. So here’s something just for fun.
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Visual Perception Lessons

Our brains create the what we observe the world to be. A pretty awesome set of lessons on visual perception from the Mind Lab. Start with “Lesson 1: Illusion of an Uninterrupted World” by clicking on the thumbnail picture. The second lesson is on “Constructing a 3-D World from 2-D Images.” The next lesson is “Visual Interpretation of the Physical World.” And finally, “Perception beyond Sensory Input.” The web is amazing. There’s so much out there to learn. Have a fun weekend.

Fireworks Battle in Greece

Well in India we just got done with Diwali. The fireworks were great if you don’t mind the air and noise pollution. I think foreigners should visit India during Diwali. I don’t think any other country has so much in terms of fireworks as India during Diwali. But I don’t think we have fireworks battles in India.

Easter on the small Greek island of Chios means one thing – a massive firework battle, with over 50,000 rockets raining down on two small towns.

http://lads.myspace.com/videos/vplayer.swf

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