Archive | July, 2012

Relativistic Baseball

10 Jul

What would happen if you tried to hit a baseball going 90% of the speed of light?

These gamma rays and debris expand outward in a bubble centered on the pitcher’s mound. They start to tear apart the molecules in the air, ripping the electrons from the nuclei and turning the air in the stadium into an expanding bubble of incandescent plasma. The wall of this bubble approaches the batter at about the speed of light—only slightly ahead of the ball itself.

Nice. Isn’t that the name of a band? “Incandescent Plasma!”

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Via Meadea: Reading Advice from Edmund Burke

7 Jul

Here it is. Here’s the intro:

A wonderful appreciation of the British orator, parliamentarian and essayist Edmund Burke appears in written by Brian Doyle. Read the whole thing is our advice. One (of many) highlights in the essay: Doyle tells us what Burke read. It’s a paragraph any aspiring writer, reader and orator should study: read like this and whatever talent you have will shine more brightly than it does now.