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Man Creates ATLAS Detector From Lego Bricks

phage434 Superconducting magnet Technic kit (54 comments)

I can't wait to start building with Lego superconducting magnets. And the liquid helium distribution system!

about a year ago
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Hidden Viral Gene Discovered In GMO Crops

phage434 A Modest Proposal (391 comments)

The next obvious step is to label ALL food with the exact sequence of the plant/animal. Educated consumers will then easily be able to determine the safety and even the flavorfulness of their food. Don't like that pesky CMV promoter? Don't eat it. This is a much superior proposal to the worthless "GMO" label, that only tells you if some scientist did something (no telling what). And, you'll find out what all of those changes inserted with "natural" techniques involve -- most of which are far more "interesting" than the GMO modifications. Might take some space on the label, of course, but use a small font.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Science Sights To See?

phage434 Aricibo (363 comments)

Hard to drive to, but if you are in Puerto Rico, this is a must. It's even bigger than that. You can pretend you are James Bond running around.

more than 2 years ago
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Intel's Thunderbolt With Fiber Optics Years Away

phage434 Local optical interconnect has NEVER made sense (69 comments)

This is the latest in a very very long series of failures of optical interconnect in multiprocessors, in the computer room, and at the desktop. Since the '80s people have told us that wires will never keep working, and optics is the only solution. They have been wrong, and continue to be wrong. I was even blasted by a respected physicist that told me that there was an inherent power advantage for optics. That was wrong also. Optics is great if you need to go across the ocean, but don't tell me you want to go across the cabinet with it.

about 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Math Curriculum To Understand General Relativity?

phage434 Some concrete book suggestions (358 comments)

A Course in Mathematics for Students of Physics (Vols. 1&2), Paul Bamberg and Shlomo Sternberg; This is the book you will wish was used for your intro calculus text. It covers linear algebra and vector calculus done "right." Specifically, it makes the crucial distinction between vectors and one-forms, and you will be annoyed to realize you have been fooled all these years by poor instruction.

The Geometry of Physics, Theodore Frankel; An excellent introduction to differential geometry and its application not just to GR but to other areas of physics as well. Highly recommended.

A First Course in General Relativity, Bernard Schutz; I found this book helpful in some specific areas -- notably understanding the notions of the stress-energy tensor.

Gravitation, Charles Misner, Kip Thorne, & John Wheeler; This is the classic text, and is comprehensive and comprehensible. I like Wheeler's way of thinking about physics, and it shows through here. There is the standard joke, that this is a text which not only discusses gravitation, but also attempts to demonstrate it by its high mass.

about 3 years ago
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Making Microelectronics Out of Nanodiamond

phage434 The real problem is that there are no P devices (80 comments)

You can't make vacuum devices with holes, so there are not the complementary devices needed for CMOS like operation. We would be working with a technology similar to N-channel FETs, with all the problems of low-output state power dissipation. It won't scale to high integration levels. That said, the technology probably has niche applications in high temperature and rad-hard environments.

more than 3 years ago
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Developer Creates DIY 8-Bit CPU

phage434 The PDP-1 was soldered, not wire wrapped (187 comments)

Wire wrapped construction was a great step forward in reliability from the solder of the PDP-1 and PDP-6 computers.

more than 5 years ago
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History of the LED — the Movie

phage434 Silicon, not Silicone (106 comments)

Can't anyone keep the difference between silicon and silicone straight? Silicon: element, component of semiconductors (and some blue LEDs made from silicon carbide); Silicone: compound, used for breast implants

more than 5 years ago

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