Current News from The Looking Glass:

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

12/21/2012 Dark Nights Rising from The Dawn

It seems the final words of my last post to this site were perhaps never more profound...

"I will make an attempt to jump back into the fray. Until then, stay safe and keep your heads out of the line of fire..."

The utterly disturbing events (albeit expected) of the past month or two seem to fit right in with the "End of The World"/Mayan Prophecy mania that predictably has swept into the collective unconscious, and mass media alike. If we were not before, we certainly now are Down the Rabbit Hole folks. It is virtually impossible to tell what is real and illusion any longer.

Beware but do not fear! The worst is yet to come. See you all on the other side! 

In the meantime please check out the following IMPORTANT posts:


Monday, October 29, 2012

I am not one to make light of the inherent power and destructive force of a hurricane...after all, I grew up in North Carolina (so, I have seen my share of damage there), I have seen first hand the long term effects of "Katrina" on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi seven years later, and just recently hunkered down through "Issac" as it slowed to a near stand still and whipped on Biloxi, MS. and neighboring towns for days.

That being said...there are a number of interesting things happening in relation to hurricane "Sandy".

It was this same time 21 years ago that the great Halloween Nor'easter known only as "The Perfect Storm" battered basically the same geographic region that is likely to be the bulls eye on "Sandy's" projected path this evening. Those of you too young to remember it might recognize the story of the same name that became a major motion picture with George Clooney which centered around the fishing vessel, Andrea GAIL which was lost at sea during the storm.

Today is The Hunter's MOON, which doesn't bode well for those along the North Atlantic coast, as the Full Moon should affect the tides in such a way as to create a more pronounced Storm Surge as "Sandy" makes her way towards land later tonight.

As Halloween and the U.S. Presidential election both draw near...the "Demon Star" or "Ghoul Star" has been highly visible this past week. Algol (in the constellation Perseus) has historically been associated with misfortune and violence.

Good luck out safe and keep your eyes on the skies.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Is Anybody Out There?

With the Mayan "End of the World" predicted for just over two months from now...I figured, I could spare a moment to check back in with The Looking Glass and let any old or new readers know that I am still around. I keep my eyes and ears open, I just don't have the time or resources these days to write or post full time (or even part time for that matter). I am not much for "End Times" prophecy, so I'm just going to go ahead and suggest that by January 2013, I will make an attempt to jump back into the fray. Until then, stay safe and keep your heads out of the line of fire...

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Thank you Loren Coleman!

Nuff' said...

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Top Twenty Twilight Language Theorists

Top Twenty Twilight Language Theorists

Monday, March 19, 2012

Shake, Rattle and MOLE

(CNN) -- Mysterious explosions. Unexplained shaking. Something's going on in Clintonville, Wisconsin, but nobody seems to know what it is.

The sounds -- variously described as rattling pipes, clanging metal, thunder or firecrackers --have continued on and off since early Sunday night in just one part of the small town of 4,600, located about 180 miles northeast of Madison.

Accompanying the sounds are vibrations that have shaken homes and household objects in the northeast corner of town, city manager Lisa Kuss said.

The sounds were loud enough Monday morning that a CNN journalist could hear them during a cell phone conversation with Kuss.

The baffling phenomenon does not appear to have caused any significant damage or injuries, according to Kuss.

Workers peered into manhole covers and utility crews tested for leaking natural gas and other problems, but no one has yet to find anything amiss, Kuss said.

Geologists and the military don't seem to have any quick answers, either, she said.

U.S. Geological Survey records show no seismic activity anywhere in Wisconsin Sunday or Monday.

"It's like we're imagining things but it ain't, because we're all out and talking to find out what's going on," Clintonville resident Verda Shultz told CNN affiliate WLUK.

Absent any better explanations for the sounds and sensations that have, well, rattled, the town, residents were left to their own devices to come up with explanations.

"My bet is on gremlins," one Facebook user jokingly posted to WLUK's Facebook page. Alien machinery buried for millennia, countered another.

No, said one one tongue-in-cheek Twitter user. It's clearly mole men launching their attack on the surface dwellers.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Time Bandits!

First Demonstration of Time Cloaking

Physicists have created a "hole in time" using the temporal equivalent of an invisibility cloak.

Invisibility cloaks are the result of physicists' newfound ability to distort electromagnetic fields in extreme ways. The idea is steer light around a volume of space so that anything inside this region is essentially invisible.

The effect has generated huge interest. The first invisibility cloaks worked only at microwave frequencies but in only a few years, physicists have found ways to create cloaks that work for visible light, for sound and for ocean waves. They've even designed illusion cloaks that can make one object look like another.

Today, Moti Fridman and buddies, at Cornell University in Ithaca, go a step further. These guys have designed and built a cloak that hides events in time.

Time cloaking is possible because of a kind of duality between space and time in electromagnetic theory. In particular, the diffraction of a beam of light in space is mathematically equivalent to the temporal propagation of light through a dispersive medium. In other words, diffraction and dispersion are symmetric in spacetime.

That immediately leads to an interesting idea. Just as its easy to make a lens that focuses light in space using diffraction, so it is possible to use dispersion to make a lens that focuses in time.

Such a time-lens can be made using an electro-optic modulator, for example, and has a variety of familiar properties. "This time-lens can, for example, magnify or compress in time," say Fridman and co.

This magnifying and compressing in time is important.

The trick to building a temporal cloak is to place two time-lenses in series and then send a beam of light through them. The first compresses the light in time while the second decompresses it again.

But this leaves a gap. For short period, there is a kind of hole in time in which any event is unrecorded.

So to an observer, the light coming out of the second time-lens appears undistorted, as if no event has occurred.

In effect, the space between the two lenses is a kind of spatio-temporal cloak that deletes changes that occur in short periods of time.

The device has some limitations. The Cornell time cloak lasts only for 110 nanoseconds--that's not long. And Fridman and co say the best it can achieve will be 120 microseconds.

But it's early days yet. Given the rapid development of spatial cloaks, it'd be a brave man who'd bet on this being the last word.

Fridman and pals have clearly made themselves an interesting toy but they modestly refrain from speculating about the applications for their time cloak.

However, that's a task well suited to readers of the Physics arXiv Blog. If you have any suggestions, leave them here.

Ref: Demonstration Of Temporal Cloaking

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

"This Moment to ARise" Redux

Dozens of dead blackbirds have fallen from the sky over a small Arkansas town for the second year in a row.

That the town of Beebe has seen this before, however, doesn't make the deaths of dozens of birds any less odd -- maybe even more so.

ABC Arkansas affiliate KATV reported that a radar image showed a large mass over Beebe a few hours before midnight Saturday. Then the birds began falling from the sky, just like last year.

Emily Nichols, a police dispatcher in Beebe, told ABC Radio that she received multiple calls. "Just that blackbirds are falling again and that they found black birds on their streets where they live or at churches," Nichols said.

Animal Care and Control was called out at about 7 p.m., a few hours earlier than last year, Horace Taylor of Animal Care and Control in Beebe told ABC Radio.

"Well, there was just birds falling down on the street and people dodging and missing them," Taylor said. "And we were down the street picking them up. We got called out by the chief and we all [came] out trying to pick them off the street."

Taylor added that the Game and Fish Department took about 30 of the nearly 100 birds for testing to try to determine what happened.

Fireworks were blamed for the deaths of thousands of blackbirds last year, but it's unclear whether fireworks were the cause this time. Police imposed an impromptu ban on fireworks when the birds began falling this year.

Lt. Brian Duke of the Beebe Police Department told ABC this year wasn't nearly as bad as last year, when the birds covered the streets of Beebe. This year, they were concentrated in a smaller area and the birds were cleaned up quickly. There haven't been any reports of people being hit by a falling bird.

Biologists said last year's kill was caused by birds who were spooked off their roosts by the loud explosions and began flying into homes, cars, telephone poles and each other.

Around this same time last year, thousands of dead fish also turned up in the Arkansas River, prompting conspiracies about the end of the world, poison and environmental catastrophe.

Taylor and Duke both agree, though: it's probably just the fireworks in Beebe.

ABC News Radio and the Associated Press contributed to this report.


The Red Queen?

[the Mad Hatter is brought into The Red Queen's court]
The Red Queen: Where is Alice?
The Mad Hatter: I've been considering words that start with the letter M. Moron. Mutiny. Murder. Mmm-malice.
The Red Queen: Well, we're looking for an A word right now. Where is Alice?