Early in 1989 I found myself on a team that was responsible for automating the control and tuning of the source for a negative-ion accelerator …
These are images taken of chemical crystals using a Nikon polarizing microscope from 2004-2006. I prepared slides of melt crystals of phenol (carbolic acid) and benzoic acid, and precipitation crystals of ascorbic acid and potassium acid phthalate. Crystal will form vivid colors in a polarizing microscope as you can see this video. The music is a piece called “Impermanence,” I composed in 2011 using Acid Pro.
The Mind and the Body
The Second Law is even more important than water for the creation of life. The Second Law, in its simplest form, can be stated, “Matter and energy tend to spread.” What is so meaningful about that simple sentence. After all, it is not surprising that cream spreads into coffee when stirred. We think of disorder as matter and energy that are well spread. We give this disorder the name “entropy.” The Second Law states that the entropy of matter and energy increases or, at minimum, does not decrease. An implication of this law is that all the matter and energy in the universe will eventually become a uniform heated soup. There will be no structure to the universe. Physicists usually say, The Universe will die in a random heat bath.”
A thought, or gedanken, experiment is the creation of a simplified, often fanciful, world for the purpose of understanding the implications of a theory. One of the first was Plato’s allegory of the cave, in which Plato postulates that people are only able to sense a part of the universe about them. The allegory explores what that means and implies. The real value of thought experiments is to generate hypotheses that can be tested in the real world.