Mr. Eccles Presents | Stephon Alexander: The Jazz of Physics

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In The Jazz of Physics: The Secret Link Between Music and the Structure of the Universe, physicist and jazz saxophonist Dr. Stephon Alexander revisits the ancient realm where music, physics, and the cosmos were one. This cosmological journey accompanies Alexander’s own tale of struggling to reconcile his passion for music and physics, from taking music lessons as a boy in the Bronx to studying theoretical physics at Imperial College. Playing the saxophone and improvising with equations, Alexander uncovered the connection between the fundamental waves that make up sound and the fundamental waves that make up everything else. As he reveals, the ancient poetic idea of the “music of the spheres,” taken seriously, clarifies confounding issues in physics. Dr. Alexander is the Royce Family Professor at Brown University’s Physics Department. In 2013, he won the prestigious American Physical Society Bouchet Award for “his contributions to theoretical cosmology.” He is also a jazz musician, and recently finished recording his first electronic jazz album with Erin Rioux.

via Skeptic Magazine‘s YouTube channel

The Call Bulletins | 2016.05.19

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I’m mostly done blogging for this week, and have decided to cancel some of the paid options for this site, namely the ‘No Ads’ and ‘Media File’ subscriptions. So, the ads that WordPress shows on its unpaid sites with renew later next year. It’s good though, that in the nearly 8 years I’ve posted on this site only 29% of the total space for media files has been filled by all of the images and PDFs I’ve uploaded. I’ve decided to use the funds freed up from this to expand my Patreon support for the artists, writers, podcasters, and bloggers I follow and sometimes share from here.

I’m currently working on a draft for the Bengali edition of Lost in Translation, which will be scheduled for posting when complete, sometime next week. I’ve lately been setting up quizzes for my Bengali lessons, for both catch-up work on earlier material as I’m going over now, plus the next set of study units I’ll engage with when the next 18 week semester begins later this summer. These quizzes have been set with notifications, so that each Friday night one of each in the set will pop into my inbox, ready to be completed before moving onto the next week’s study unit.

Tf. Tk. Tts.

Great Courses from the Great Courses® | The Big Questions of Philosophy

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This course of 36 lectures is taught by Professor David Kyle Johnson of King’s College. It deals with the most perplexing ideas in philosophy, those which have yet to yield any definitive answers to our species’ inquiry.

From the start on how we do philosophy and what it is, leading up to the biggest question of all on the meaning of life, this course is bound to at some point touch on matters many will find unsettling.

This includes matters of the existence of the soul, of the existence of minds, and even the existence of persons as real, discrete things existing ‘out there’ in the world.

The matters of free will, of justice, of what makes our actions moral and defines the Good, are all discussed in as much detail as allowable for the roughly 30 minute lectures.

These lectures offer, at best, tentative answers and remaining problems to keep you thinking about the best arguments offered for them to date.

A warning: If you are frightened by the prospect of having your beliefs on these questions called into at least some doubt, then avoid this course.

I personally found the lessons on morality, personal identity and the nature of government unsettling in parts, but in a good way, and have since revised my prior social and political views in light of the questions raised. This is as it should be.

In my view, dogmatic adherence to any ideology or a fixed set of conclusions is reactionary and dangerous, and this course is a terrific way to overcome that.

I found this course enjoyable and enlightening, and if you are into asking questions without cheap, easy, and simplistic answers, then this course is for you.

Caturday’s Astrophenia | A Most Mercurial Week!

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Getting ready for study this weekend, focusing on vocabulary and lectures, so I’ll be minimal on text here. I’m still recovering from the coolness and yummy food of Friday’s Greek Fest celebration, and seeing Marvel’s Civil War movie in the theatre immediately afterward. I’m enjoying a new video lecture course, on Indian history, by the Great Courses. I’ll post a review of it when I’m done. Enjoy the weekend, and I’ll try likewise!


Contemplating the Sun

Crossing Mars

Aurora over Sweden

A Mercury Transit  Sequence

The SONG and the Hunter

NGC 7023: The Iris Nebula

Three Worlds for TRAPPIST 1

Mercury’s Transit: An Unusual Spot on the Sun

Webb Telescope Mirror Rises after Assembly

Saturn and Mars visit Milky Way Star Clouds

A Mercury Transit Music Video from SDO

A Transit of Mercury

ISS and Mercury Too

Falcon 9 and Milky Way

Image Of THe Week:


1st Boeing Starliner Hull Assembled as 1st Crew Flight delays to 2018

Eleanor Lutz Created a Medieval-Style Map of Mars

Climate Change: Plankton and You: the Science of How We’re All connected to Climate

Expose-R2 Photochemistry on the Space Station

Second Cycle of Martian Seasons Completing for Curiosity Rover

Astronomy Cast Ep. 414: Navigating Far

Reminder: Science Luau 2016

Climate Change: Power Play: Envisioning a Wind, Water, and Solar World

A Martian Dustup

2007 OR10: The Largest Unnamed World in the Solar System

Super-Secret X-37B Nears One Year in Orbit Doing???

Creationist Ken Ham’s Attempt to Debunk Science with Science Goes Hilariously Awry!

Climate Change: Effects

Kepler Verifies 1284 New Planets!

When Can I Die on Mars?

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Fractals of the Week | Newton’s Bounty, So Passing Strange

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Here I’ve a few wallpapers from a parameter set using Fractal Domains as an example of how useful older apps can remain. I’ve still not found a version of the Mandelbulber app that will work with my current OS, El Capitan, so I’m forced to find new methods with apps that may seem at first more limited. FD is the first app I ever used, and the most limited. FD uses only 4 fractal types; Newton, Halley, Mandelbrot set (and its corresponding Julia sets), and a more generalized Mandelbrot set, kinda, sorta, using a method of finding ratios which allows more variation in formula exponents, like z^3, z^4, and so on, instead of only z^2 as with the regular M-set. These are all created from the same Newton fractal parameter set, and vary by far in differences in the formula numerator.

Small changes can have a big effect! Double-click to macro-transscalify each image to full size!





All JPEG, PNG & GIF images in this post are original works by the author, created via a variety of apps and unless otherwise stated are copyright 2016 by Troy Loy. I hereby permit the free, noncommercial use of these images, with proper attribution or a link back to the original source. Thank you!