I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving! I, for one, spent mine with friends and family back in the Hoosier State and was away from an internet connection. At the moment I’m still trying to catch up reading blogs and news from the weekend, so I’m afraid I don’t have anything particularly interesting to say, except to dump a couple links I found interesting.
- The History of Thanksgiving – Mayflower Myths via The History Channel
- Christmas vs Skepticism via The Rogues Gallery. I didn’t grow up with Christmas, so I’ve always found the whole cultural phenomenon somewhat fascinating. Now that I have a completely different reason to ignore Christmas I find myself at something of a loss. Anyway, it’s an interesting, seasonally related read.
- Quantum physics ‘rules’ — Australian scientists create world’s most accurate ‘ruler’ via PhysOrg. Needless to say, I found the cute headline endearing. The concept looks interesting, though. The idea is to get single photons to traverse a specific region several times, and using quantum mechanics one can determine the probability of the photon taking a particular path. The more times the photons travel the region, the better we can estimate the probability of an unknown path, and thus it’s length by comparing it to a known path. In a sense, it’s a lot like how you can measure the period of a pendulum more accurately by letting it oscillate several times and averaging.