Saturday, July 29, 2006

Leaves and Strings

We see a leaf in a tree. It is beautiful, simply as a visual representation. If we examine, investigate and measure the leaf there would be some that say we have damaged its simplicity. I disagree. There is nothing wrong with simplicity and there is nothing wrong with measuring and defining. They are just different views of perception.

We can apply a multitude of methods to investigate such as algebra, geometrical, biochemical, its symbiotic relationships and so on. A leaf is a leaf and it is beautiful. A leaf can be much more and still beautiful.

When it comes to string theory I understand about 1% of what I read. A current view of the “string theory” is that the universe exits in eleven dimensions. We perceive the world in three dimensions plus one. An object has height, width and depth (three dimensions). The plus one dimension is time. Time is a coordinate in geometry. If time is a coordinate, then instead of three coordinates to describe a leaf, we have four coordinates to describe any object. So our ability to investigate has four dimensions.

And the other seven dimensions? They can be partially represented mathematically. The math works but our ability to have scientific verification is not there yet. So STRING is a theory. We lack the ability at the moment to prove whether STRING is a true or a false representation. Research with particle accelerators may be able to verify or dismiss STRING in the foreseeable future.

The site describes string as follows:

“Think of a guitar string that has been tuned by stretching the string under tension across the guitar. Depending on how the string is plucked and how much tension is in the string, different musical notes will be created by the string. These musical notes could be said to be excitation modes of that guitar string under tension.”

If STRING proves to be true then the elementary particles of a leaf can be thought of as musical notes that emit a specific vibration.
A leaf is green, it blows in the wind and it is beautiful. A leaf according to STRING may also be a series of musical notes in this magical universe.

Bobby (Whats Shakin') Bacon

Sunday, July 23, 2006

How Wet Can You Get

Should I go swimming, I wondered. Sunday early afternoon. Where was that program? Couldn’t find it. Such a quiet day. No one around. Nowhere to go to. I looked at my bike. I looked at the dog. Dog looked bored. Ahhhh. He can’t come swimming. Maybe take him to Monarch Woods. Good idea. Maybe on the way, exchange those beer bottles for money. Then they won’t take up space anymore. I didn’t seem too warm for a dog. See how it goes. So out we went. Up to the beer store. Passed the garden center. Maybe stop off there later, see what sales are on. It started to rain a bit. Mmmmmm, did I close my windows? Was sure I didn’t. But maybe it wouldn’t be so bad.

On a railing, close to the store entrance, I tied the dog. Dry spot. Went into that ice palace. Brrr. beer stores are cold. Had to wait a bit. Heard thunder roll in. Got my exchange money, turned and saw one thick sheet of rain. Ran outside, freed soaked dog ( name is Simon) who looked a bit panicky.

“May as well come in,” said a man in the front hall of the beer store, waiting out the storm with a case of beer. I did. As always Simon became the subject of conversation. Instantly adored by most who see him. The man, a typical beer drinker, told me about someone who breeds golden retrievers and how great they are. No argument there.

I looked at the sky. Pure blue in the direction of my place. The other way, coming from Waterloo, black, threatening clouds without end. “We may as well go, Simey”, I said, and we stepped into the downpour. We ran across the parking lot to the entrance of the “New Canadian Super Store.” Wasn’t going to hide there, was thinking about open windows at home. No ambition to go into the Garden Center either, anymore.

Folks hiding from the rain under the overhang of the super store looked adoringly and with pity at Simon, water streaming off him. “Ahh,” said a man, “You are the only one I feel sorry for.” No matter that I was dripping too. Simon and I jogged on. I ran into the house first to close windows. Luckily the rain had come straight and the damage was minor. My bed wasn’t wet at least, nor the books under the bathroom window. I grabbed two big towels from a shelf and threw them over Simon, rubbing him as close to dry as I could get him.

“Well Simon,” I said, throwing the wet towels in the washer and getting out the hair dryer, “I think we both went for a swim.”