I am reading three online resources in parallel – on the history and the basics of computing, computer science, software engineering, and the related culture and ‘philosophy’. An accidental combination I find most enjoyable. Joel on Software: Joel Spolsky’s blog – a collection of classic essays. What every developer needs to know about Unicode. New terms […]Read More Computers, Science, and History Thereof
Peter von Rittinger’s biography reads like a success story created by a Victorian novelist, and his invention was a text-book example of innovation triggered by scarcity ( Bio DE / EN). Born 1811, he was poor and became an orphan early. Yet he was able to study mathematics and physics as his secondary education had […]Read More Peter von Rittinger’s Steam Pump (AKA: The First Heat Pump)
Two years ago I wrote an article about The Myth of the Toilet Flush, comparing the angular rotation caused by the earth’s rotation to the typical rotation in experiments with garden hoses that make it easy to observe the Coriolis effect. There are several orders of magnitude in difference, and the effect can only be […]Read More Lest We Forget the Pioneer: Ottokar Tumlirz and His Early Demo of the Coriolis Effect
Don’t expect anything philosophical or career-change-related. I am talking about water and its phase transition to ice because … …the fact that a process so common and important as water freezing is not fully resolved and understood, is astonishing. (Source) There are more spectacular ways of triggering this transition than just letting a tank of water […]Read More A Sublime Transition
Originally posted on Samir Chopra:
The YouTube video titled “A Glorious Dawn” starring Carl Sagan and Stephen Hawking (their voices run through Auto-Tune), and snippets from Sagan’s epic Cosmos, has now racked up almost nine million views and twenty-seven thousand comments since it was first put up sometime back in 2009. (Mysteriously, in addition to its…
This is my pick of books I enjoyed reading in 2013. I am hardly capable of reviewing books but I tend to pick books in order to answer a specific question. Biographies I have a penchant for physicists’ lives in the first half of the 20th century. How did scientists organize their lives and research without computers? […]Read More This Year in Books: Biographies, Science, Essays.
I warn you – I am in the mood for random long-winded philosophical ramblings. As announced I have graduated recently again, denying cap-and-gown costume as I detest artificial Astroturf traditions such as re-importing academic rituals from the USA to Europe. A Subversive El(k)ement fond of uniforms would not be worth the name. However, other than that […]Read More Fragile Technology? (Confessions of a Luddite Disguised as Tech Enthusiast)