Interesting science

There is so much information out there that I miss stuff that I might find interesting from the sciences. Yesterday I was reading about no local quantum science (Dr Adam Becker) and this morning this popular piece popped up on my feed, which may be of interest to our dog loving friends.

‘This could be the holy grail to replace palm oil’ - research team 'This could be the holy grail to replace palm oil' - research team - BBC News

Medical science has had a rough time recently as people question their motives and spread unfounded rumours and lies. Good news stories don’t get air time these days as most media companies prefer to beat up the crisis mentality.

There’s hardly a person I know that hasn’t been touched by cancer in one way or another. This hopefully is a breakthrough.


It’s that time of year again … Nobel Prizes. Two stories caught my eye from chemistry and physics.
Quantum dots: TV screen crystals win Chemistry Nobel Prize Quantum dots: TV screen crystals win Chemistry Nobel Prize - BBC News

Nobel Prize for ‘attosecond physicists’ Agostini, L’Huillier and Krausz Nobel Prize for 'attosecond physicists' Agostini, L'Huillier and Krausz - BBC News

As a reference an attosecond is a billionth of a billionth of a second. This duration is so short that there are about as many attoseconds in a single second as there have been seconds in the entire history of the universe. (Scientific American)


Weird science…

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I’m fascinated by the field of “synthetic biology” - aka the art of applying engineering principles to biological systems. Cell engineering, CRISPR, generative AI trained on DNA - the future is exciting!


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These things are quite amazing when put into a comprehendable perspective. It’s fascinating.
I remember doing a speech in primary school, where I extracted the info from my fathers ‘Chemistry for Engineers’ books. He had a full set of them and I used to read them occasionally as I was bent that way at the age of 10. In the speech I described (quoted from the manuscipts) the real size of an atom. It read as:
If you took all the atoms in a single cubic inch of air, and changed each atom into a grain of sea sand; the resulting masses of sand would fill a trench, one mile wide and three feet deep, extending from New York city, to San Fransisco. (About 2500 miles).
My vivid imagination was amazed by this statement, however, I don’t believe it had the same affect on the rest of the class. Mais, c’est la vie …
I often find myself trying to make certain things a tad more tangible for others, and some respond, some don’t. I’ve always had an inquisitive mind and am fascinated by things that others just aren’t.


They probably had little or no understanding of the scale of the various entities you were talking about because it’s actually quite a complicated illustration of the scales of size.


He is a brilliant writer and thinker.

Are you reading his book, ‘what is real’, or some of his scientific journalism?

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No but it’s on order.

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Some years ago, I was ultimately responsible for a large auction of radio spectrum in the UK. It raised a very large sum of money for the Government, in excess of £22 billion.

Trying to set this in context for an audience subsequently, I said that if you took this amount of money in pound coins and were able to make a very high pile of them, it would reach all the way to the moon. That way to describe it caught people’s imaginations at the time.


You’re probably right. It was only about grade 6 and if it’s not a topic that one is truly interested in, it would be tedious to listen too. To me, at the time, the explanation seem to make the matter nicely tangible. Maybe I was weird.

Please let me know how you find it.

It is one of the most interesting and important books I’ve ever read.

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It’s like trying to get people to understand that the earth’s surface they’re standing on is actually moving at 1000 mph. Quite baffling to most, understandably.

Much much faster than that, when one considers the speed of the Sun and the Earth as we orbit the centre of the Milky Way.


Ah. But relative to what?

The Sun.

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I think relativity is probably the baffling part.