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About Macavity

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    Main Sequence
  1. Macavity


    Well, if you're gonna go... go BIG? 66kV! https://www.theguardian.com/science/2016/apr/29/large-hadron-collider-fouine-chews-through-transformer-wiring And again... (Immortalised via taxidermy) https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/jan/27/cerns-electrocuted-weasel-display-rotterdam-natural-history-museum At least it's not as bad as "road-kill guy"?
  2. Not sure where to put this one. But I was not aware of the HUGE variety of rainbows, halos, glories, coronas etc. etc. https://www.atoptics.co.uk/
  3. Macavity

    Had enough

    Lower the bar a bit? I find I am quite happy with "holiday snap" images of DSOs. The fact that *someone else* can produce a masterpiece too. Embrace your mediocity / failure? lol. As an idea, I think there are a LOT of objects that rarely get imaged at all... You could be "one of the few"! A blast from the past: "Computers should Work... People should Think"?
  4. Macavity

    Oh God is this the Future?

    lol. I think the Daily Mail carries (arguably) better researched science articles, but I think that many PPE, Eng.Lit etc., (Oxbridge) "Arts" journos don't know nuffin' about science! I console myself with the idea that much of this seems to be "Pie in the Sky"... for now.
  5. For a LONG time, it was certainly a *challenge* to find (even) Skywatcher data. For my recent purchases there was an improvement: http://skywatcher.com/ But I do agree (for many of us) the WEIGHT is a very important consideration...
  6. Macavity

    Soyuz launch failure

    Quite a JOLT (apparently)! Seems that their escape was indeed (just) after the escape tower had been jettisoned??? Scary Stuff... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soyuz_(spacecraft)
  7. Macavity

    Shall we get rid of the moon?

    A couple of night ago, I awoke from my "fell asleep on couch" and checked the pre-dawn skies: A quite wonderful "New Moon in the old Moons' Arms"! A.k.a. Earthshine! I tried a quick PIC with my "200mm @ 1/10 sec" handheld, but it was not quite as inspiring as the "visual splendor" shall we say... lol
  8. Macavity

    Science in Astronomy Now

    Well, I shall perhaps require A.N. to be more authoritative in the future! I felt a slight "negative frisson" (triggered?) with their use of "Fake News" in the Editorial... Is there no escape from the mundane? lol. But I concede: https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/the-real-story-of-fake-news My "word of the day" would definitely be Spallation (A.N. Oct 2018 P.47) I had previously only associated it with start of Neutron Beam production. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spallation +1 to AN on THAT one anyway!
  9. Macavity

    Sniff a Comet Postcards

    Maybe they should create a version than smells of the Moon!? Astronauts (who know?) claimed it smelled of "gunpowder"! That I can imagine. Reactive Chemistry has that sort of smell... Like "gettering" when you crack open old-style radio valves? I suspect the "smell of space" (generally) is quite ephemeral...
  10. I spotted some of those images... Indeed impressive!
  11. Macavity

    Science in Astronomy Now

    I find BOTH "sides" (the main protagonists) persuasive. I note (wickedly), aside from Email, "Astronomy Now" also have a phone number too... I suppose, the expectation of being a "mine of (correct!) information" reminds me of my latter years at WORK... As a "support" rather than front-line Physicist. I recall the Management Memo reminding us to: Answer the phone within two rings and be polite (sic!) to customers... (My experience was that it destroyed any residual "colleague" thing) Dunno about Journalism. I am lost in admiration for those who "got the gig" in totalitarian states. Less impressed by the hired guns who can dash of an article for whichever side is currently *paying* them? I suppose my favourite daft quote is along the lines: "To explore this phenomena, it is important to have a TOOL of suitable size"! (FNAR) (I suppose it reveals my mental state... A perpetual adolescent boy?) I do try hard to understand the idea that a mistake in a magazine is the thin end of the wedge to a (life-threatening) anti-vaccine lobby? I love activists. I wish the internet could accommodate apathy tho... P.S. I LIKE "Astronomy Now"... I hope they still have ONE left today! In the limited selection of magazines at a local WHS a real beacon?
  12. Belated thanks for all thoughts here. I still find it hard to visualise. But maybe that's not too much of a surprise / problem. Just found: https://phys.org/news/2014-12-universe-dimensions.html (For fans of SUSY) it seems as meaningful as anything I have seen!
  13. Macavity

    Science in Astronomy Now

    I sense I'm a bit forgiving about stuff? And I do think one should always STRIVE for as much *scientific correctness* as possible. (I also acknowledge I've forgotten [never knew] re. lots of stuff!) I am the (lucky) co-author of many *collaborative* papers, but I would not like to account for the exact TRUTH in many of them. Some I KNOW contain errors due to *analysis program* bugs. One that I wrote *completely* myself, had a *humdinger* of a mistake in the theory! My Thesis "forgot"... significant details... I am grateful that the author I cited in the former was GENTLE is his criticism and that my Viva Examiners were "generous"! lol For me, the "Joy of Science" is: It gets folks to think (question)? It is not about strict correctness ALL the time? And I don't see science (sic) having a duty to battle "fake news" (or nobbers)? I suspect part of the "answer" to this lies in the following... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spaghettification I might be right / wrong / irrelevant!
  14. Macavity

    Eyepiece projection

    I would be interested to see what you achieve! I did once (rather casually!) try this technique with Baader Hyperions (which have a screw-on adapter). The result was (shall we say) "a little indifferent"... But it would seem to be a useful technique! It is a rather easier to achieve significant image "magnifications" though...
  15. I did a Joint degree in Physics and Chemistry. I found that rather fun! I sense my alma mater has discontinued this? But there are now NEW combination and (option-richer) courses?!? TBH (notably back then) I sense I might have found "straight Physics" course a tad boring. lol In retrospect, I sometimes wish I HAD become a "Chemist" (greater aptitude / enthusiasm!) But a bit of Physics and Maths can make stuff like "Quantum Chemistry" a bit of a cinch...

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