Sunday, April 24, 2016

April Showers 2016

Lord Mayor of Belfast, Nichola Mallon, Bell's brother and sister plus a few fans dedicate a street in Belfast's Titanic Quarter named after John Bell's quantum entanglement theorem.


I missed April Fools Day this year. It went right by me. But April's not yet over. So here's a few foolish links to brighten your day.

1. Belfast dedicates a street to Bell's theorem. On the fiftieth anniversary of Belfast-born John Stewart Bell's famous quantum-connectedness theorem, the city of Belfast, North Ireland, pulled out the stops to celebrate their favorite son -- the first city in the world, I would guess, to name a street after a theorem in mathematics. Now which theorem do you suppose will be the next to be so honored? I'm pushing to have the dirt road in front of my house renamed "No-cloning Theorem Way."

2. Nice film here on YouTube about the life of Grigori Perelman, the Moscow mathematician who proved the Poincare' Conjecture. No street named after this conjecture yet, so far as I can tell. The film is in Russian with English subtitles and features mainly interviews with Perelman's colleagues. The reclusive genius shuns both fame and fortune and appears mainly in blurry snapshots.

3. Nice article here on a fascinating site called Philosophy of Science Portal about Corning, the American company that invented Gorilla Glass, the superstrong, transparent substance on the front of every iPhone. Corning makes good stuff: I love my little Corning Visions-series all-glass sauce pan in which I cook my breakfast sausages.

4. Can NOTHING have a phase? This is a short pdf by Nick about whether the electromagnetic vacuum state, symbolized by |0> can possess a phase angle. And if so, how to effectively produce Gray Light, which is a coherent superposition of NOTHING (the vacuum state |0>) plus a single-photon Fock state |1>. Nothing to see here, ladies and gentlemen. Please move along.

5. From science impresario John Brockman's site, Korean futurist Jaeweon Cho's Feces Standard Money proposes to give a job to every human being and to develop a new basis for money.

6. Podcast #469 from Lorenzo Hagerty's Psychedelic Salon features Terence McKenna speaking at Esalen Institute on "Philosophy With the Gloves Off".  In this workshop Terence takes questions from his audience including an inquiry concerning the use of psychedelics as aphrodesiacs which Terence handles with remarkable grace and insight.

Double-slit skirt experiment


iona miller said...

Brilliant as ever, and definitely coherent. Am especially fond of #4.


Mistress AliceInBondageLand said...

So much good stuff here <3

Greg Mallozzi said...

Hi Nick-
Please give me a call, I am in your area and would possibly like to chat if you are available.
Thank You.


R. John said...

Brilliant stuff. I've been reading some of your books, Nick, and I'd love to talk with you about them. I wrote to the email address on your webpage (is that still current?). In any case, feel free to call me if that's best: 203-214-0748. Hope to hear from you soon!

All best,
John Williams
Professor of English and Media Studies
Yale University