Archive for
April 2020

Comments for Sunday, April 26, 2020, thru Thursday, Apr. 30, 2020:

April 29, 2020 - Last night I decided to just spend the evening doing "normal" stuff.  I started watching things I'd recorded on my DVR, beginning with "The Daily Social Distancing Show" with Trevor Noah, then Stephen Colbert's show, and a few parts of Jimmy Fallon's Monday night show.  (I record the shows and then watch them the next evening so I can fast-forward past the commercials.) Then it was movie time, and I tried a couple movies I'd downloaded from TCM, but it quickly became apparent that what I really wanted to do was watch a couple more Joe Rogan podcasts, specifically his two discussions with British physicist Brian Cox.  I clicked on the first discussion from February of 2015 and the link wouldn't work, so I watched the discussion from January 28, 2019, episode #1233, which is 2 hours and 35 minutes long.

Wow!  I have listened to many of Brian Cox's "Infinite Monkey Cage" podcasts and found them all enjoyable, but the Joe Rogan podcast was terrific.  It was what I really needed after watching and listening to Sean Carroll and Brian Greene.  Brian Cox is my kind of scientist.  He's clearly interested in how the universe works, not in how Quantum Mechanics is used to compute things that aren't real.  Quantum mechanics was mentioned only briefly in the show, at about the 1 hour 45 minute mark.  The rest of the discussion was about everything from science fiction movies to measuring space, from the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) to dark matter, from carbon and oxygen being more and more rare the farther you travel from the Milky Way to Bertrand Russell's addiction to tobacco.

Prof. Cox talked about his work at the LHC and the kinds of experiments they did to see how sub-atomic particles work.  He views the LHC as extremely important to science and feels sad that in 1993, due to budget and political problems, America abandoned its plans to build a Superconducting Super Collider in Texas.  Contrast that attitude to the negative views by Sean Carrol and Brian Greene, who seem to believe that the LHC was and is a waste of money.

Prof. Cox very carefully described to Joe Rogan what it means when scientists talk about a "flat universe."  He also talked about experiments and how experiments both confirm what theories propose and they provide clues to solving mysteries.  At one point Prof. Cox stated, "It is natural to not know."  That is in sharp contrast to the QM advocates who seem to believe that QM is all that you need to know.

When I paused the show from time to time to make a note I noticed that four links to other shows appeared near the bottom of the screen, and one of the links was to Joe Rogan's first discussion with Brian Cox (episode #610):

Brian Cox on the Joe Rogan podcast
The link to that show on Joe Rogan's web site still didn't work, so when I finished watching episode #1233 I clicked on the link to episode #610 and watched the YouTube copy.

In some ways that 2 hour and 50 minute discussion is even better than the one I had just watched.  I didn't have time to watch it all.  When it was bed-time, I turned off the TV at the 2 hour 8 minute mark (2:08:00) and I'll watch the rest of it tonight.  In the part I watched, Prof. Cox talked ONLY about what can be proved to be real, and he never mentioned Quantum Mechanics.  At about the 1:19:00 mark he talks about how, if you could watch at a proton going around inside the LHC at 99.9999999 percent of the speed of light, you would also see that time for that proton is passing 7000 times slower than it is for you.  That is what I keep telling the mathematicians on the sci.physics.relativity forum and what they constantly argue is not true!

At about that same place in the discussion, Brian Cox explains how you cannot travel at the speed of light if you have mass, and if you have no mass then you must travel at the speed of light.  That's something I had thought about but never saw or heard stated by any scientist before.  The rest of the discussion around that point is how time slows down when you travel very fast, and because time slows down it also seems like distances shrink.  If you were a proton traveling around the LHC which is 17 miles in circumference, it would seem to you that you only traveled 12 feet to go around one time.  (When I use a time dilation calculator, I find that if you go 299,792.455 kilometers per second, you will age 1 second while someone who is stationary ages 7,068 seconds.)

I'm going to have to transcribe some of the statements Prof. Cox makes in that part of the podcast and put them on the sci.physics.relativity forum where they constantly tell me I'm the only person in the world who believes such things.

On the sci.physics.relativity forum, they argue that when scientists talk about time actually slowing down for clocks (or a person) who is traveling very fast, the scientist does not actually mean it, they are just "dumbing down" what is true so that the "ordinary" people who do not understand mathematics and Quantum Theory can understand it. On that Joe Rogan podcast, Joe Rogan is asking questions and Prof. Cox is giving answers.  Plus Prof. Cox explains those answers in different ways, all of which would totally disagree with what the sci.physics.relativity mathematicians say.

I just wish there was some way to contact Prof. Cox to ask him what he thinks about my proposed radar gun experiment.

April 28, 2020
- Yesterday, I received my $1,200 stimulus check.  So, I'm once again trying to figure out how to talk with someone who has a Stalker II SDR radar gun.  I need to verify that it works the way the manufacturer said it works before I buy one.  (Another manufacturer also told me their gun works the way I need the gun to work, but I soon learned they were just telling me what I wanted to hear in order to sell me a gun.)  I've tried my local police departments, but they use Lidar guns, not radar guns, and I'm not sure of the best way to contact police departments that are further away and have less reason to talk with me.

Maybe someone on in Turku, Kauhajoki, Pyharanta, Taialkoski, Haapajarvi, Porvoo, Kokkola, Rauma, Miehikkala, Forssa, Lapua, Hämeenlinna, Keuruu, Kajaani, Lappeenranta, Tornio, Utsjoki, Mellila, Anjala, Valkeala, Lumijoki, Jokioinen, Uusikaupunki, Seinajoki, Ekenas, Nakkila, Ilmajoki, or Ylikiiminki has an idea.  Those are all towns in Finland from where people have visited this web site in the past month or so, plus Helsinki, of course.  I keep wondering what I have written that has gotten their attention.  Or is it just one traveling salesman?

Meanwhile, yesterday evening I watched the second of the three discussions podcaster Joe Rogan had with Professor Sean Carroll, which means I've now watched all three.  They once again discussed all sorts of topics, from Quantum computing to the "Black Mirror" TV show on Netflix, from Twitter to whether there is a need for people to die, from religion to the total number of heart beats each creature has in its lifetime.  To me, it still seems like a lot of Prof. Carroll's beliefs are total crap.  That was particularly true when the show ended and I saw that YouTube was suggesting that I might also be interested in a YouTube lecture by Sean Carroll titled "A Brief History of Quantum Mechanics."  I watched about half of it.

Argh!!!  More total crap!  He begins by describing what happens when a photon hits a half-silvered mirror, and how the photon will travel "in part" through the glass and "in part" be reflected by the mirror. How can anyone believe that????  What happens is that many photons hit the half-silvered mirror and half of the photons go through the glass and half bounce off the silver of the mirror.  A photon cannot be divided in half by a mirror! 

At about the 16:23 minute mark, they showed this graphic:
The Copenhagen Interpretation
It seems to describe the cause  of the nuttiness.  If nobody is looking, things work the way mathematicians compute that they work.  If somebody looks, things work in a rational and easy to understand way.   Why would anyone care about fantasies that happen when no one is looking?????????????????????

When I turned off that video, YouTube suggested another video that might be of interest to me: "Brian Greene and Alan Alda Discuss Why Einstein Hated Quantum Mechanics."  It was only about 15 minutes long, so I watched all of it.  Argh!!  It was more of the same, only instead of Joe Rogan being confused by what a Quantum Mechanics physicist was saying, it was Alan Alda.

I think I've had my fill of Quantum Mechanics lectures.  Why Einstein hated Quantum Mechanics is totally clear to me: Quantum Mechanics has nothing to do with reality, and the Quantum Mechanics practitioners don't care!  They just love playing around with mathematical equations, and they love how those equations just confuse all the non-believers.  If the non-believers want to understand, then they need to stop asking questions and just believe in the wonders of Quantum Mathematics. That is basically what people on the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum have been telling me for years.  I'm just not a believer.  Like Joe Rogan and Alan Alda, I need to understand the logic.  If it is not logical, then it is not understandable.  And if it is not understandable and just requires that you believe, then I'm not interested. 

April 27, 2020
- In yesterday's comment I mentioned the idea of referring to Quantum Mechanics as "Myth Math," and I wondered how the people on the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum would react to that. 
I asked, and there was only one response.  It was from "Dono" who wrote:
The reason that idiots like you can post on the internet IS QM. Without QM, transistors would not exist. Without transistors computers, routers, etc. would not exist.
I knew that, of course.  So, I need to qualify what is "Myth Math" and what is not.  When Quantum Mechanics was first developed, it produced amazing results.  But today it seems to be doing far more harm than good.  I needed to think more about that, so I spent most of yesterday afternoon puttering around with podcasts in hopes that, while doing that, my subconscious might put things in their right order or that some idea would occur to me.

One of the things I did was create a web page that only I can see because I haven't uploaded the page to my web site.  The page is just a directory of podcasts that seem interesting, something like a bookmark or favorites page, but with more details.  I could have done it with WORD or some other way, but creating a page in html format is easy to do with my SeaMonkey browser, so that's what I did.  Now I can just open that page in my browser, click on a link, and a window opens up for that web site.  And I can also have links directly to specific episodes, too.  Here's part of what the top fourth of the page looks like:

                    Lake's list of interesing podcasts

Yesterday evening, I put the file on a flash drive so I could use it in my small laptop that I have in my living room near my 46-inch flat screen TV.  And I watched Joe Rogan's first Sean Carroll interview.  It's 2 hours and 41 minutes long, and it's from August 24, 2017.  It was a very enjoyable and educational discussion.  I made lots of notes.  At about the 10 minute mark, Sean Carroll says that physicists today disrespect you if you ask about how things work in the universe.  They ask, "Why are you doing that when you could be calculating some numbers?"  They tell you, "What we see is different from what is."

At about the 37 minute mark, Carroll and Rogan started talking about the Bohr vs. Electron Cloud debate.   They showed this image on the screen:
Bohr vs Electron Cloud
Evidently, Niels Bohr described the atom like the version on the left, with electrons orbiting around the nucleus and lots of empty space between the nucleus and the electrons.  Sean Carroll argues that an atom is not like that.  It is more like the version on the right, but he doesn't even like that version because it is made up of little dots.  Carroll says the "correct" version would have a fog around the center, because the electrons could be in an infinite number of locations.  So, what he appeared to be saying is that it is not correct to illustrate an atom the way shown on the left (i.e., the most common way) because you cannot measure or calculate locations of electrons that way.  Perhaps not, but it definitely helps you understand how atoms work if you view things that way.  

What I got from the discussion was that today's Quantum Mechanics physicists do not care about how things work, they only care about how beautiful their equations are.  At one point, Carroll said that no human understands how facial recognition systems work.  They can build facial recognition systems, and nearly every smart phone these days has such a system, but no one really understands how they work.  Huh?

What I got from that was that there are people who can build facial recognition systems that look at faces just the way some people look at atoms (like the image on the left above), and they can match one face to another face in another file, but to a Quantum Mechanics physicist the process is a mystery because there are an infinite number of points on a human face, and working with just a few points is not mathematically correct.  Who picks what points to use?

I could go on and on, but this morning I woke thinking that, while Quantum Mechanics was once an amazing discovery that helped physicists solve many problems, today it does more harm than good.  We know more about how the universe works today than we did in the first quarter of the 20th century.  Plus, a lot of people appear to have adopted Quantum Mechanics as a religion.  They believe what their equations say regardless of what experiments and evidence says.  They look upon their equations as "The Word of God," although they never express things that way.  To scientists, however, there is always the possibility of some unknown factor changing what today appears to be true.  Quantum Mechanics mathematicians don't care about "what is true."  So, as Professor Carroll said at one point late in the program, "In physics today you can never discuss a subject and have everyone agree with you."  Evidently, there is always someone who has a different mathematical model of whatever is being discussed.

When the show ended (after they discussed many more subjects than what I mentioned above), I decided that I'd wait until the next evening before watching Joe Rogan's second discussion with Sean Carroll.  So, I clicked on the Dr. Steven Greer episode from March 3, 2013. Wow, what a contrast.  The blurb for the episode says:
#331. Dr. Steven Greer is the founder of The Disclosure Project.  Dr. Greer also runs CSETI (Center for the Study of Extraterrestrial Intelligence) whose goal is to initiate contact with extraterrestrials.
That certainly seemed like it should be an interesting show.  Ugh!  What a disappointment! I quickly learned that there is a BIG difference between CSETI and SETI.  Wikipedia has this information about Dr. Greer: 
He claims to have seen an unidentified flying object at close range when he was about eight years old, which inspired his interest in ufology.
Greer founded the Center for the Study of Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence (CSETI) in 1990 to create a diplomatic and research-based initiative to contact extraterrestrial civilizations.  The official statements regarding its intentions also included a new category of extraterrestrial encounters, namely CE-5 or 'close encounters of the fifth kind'. This was defined by Greer as human initiated contact and/or communication with extraterrestrial life.  Since its inception, the organisation has spent anywhere between $3.5 million and $5 million to achieve its goals.
I watched about 10 minutes of the 2 hour 55 minute program and then turned it off.  It was mostly conspiracy theory stuff about how the government is hiding all kinds of details about visitors from outer space.

I've got 20 more links to Joe Rogan interviews that look interesting.  I'll add them to my file of interesting links to make it easier for me to watch them when I have the time.

There are dozens of other podcast links on the list.  I don't enjoy listening to audio-only podcasts while sitting at my computer.  And it seems to be a waste of energy to listen to them on my flat screen TV, so I download them into my MP3 player and listen to them that way.  But not all podcasts are downloadable.  So, I spend a lot of time trying to figure out how some very popular podcasts, such as "Stuff You Should Know," can be downloaded as an MP3 file.  I don't have a smart phone, which I assume most people use to listen to such podcasts. 

I just need to determine which shows are worth the time needed to figure out who to download them, and which are worth listening to on my computer.

Or maybe I need to spend more time thinking about other things, such as my science fiction novel.  Sigh.  So much to do and so few hours in a day.  

April 26, 2020
- I've been listening to a lot of podcasts lately.  One podcast I listened to on Friday that was almost as fascinating as the Joe Rogan-Brian Greene podcast I mentioned in my April 22 comment, was Joe Rogan's interview with Sean Carroll.  Sean Carroll is a cosmologist and a professor of physics at CalTech, and he has a podcast of his own that I listen to quite often, whenever Prof. Carroll interviews some expert on a topic of interest to me.  

Joe Rogan's 1½ hour interview with Sean Carroll evidently took place around September 16, 2019,
when Carroll was out promoting his latest book titled "Something Deeply Hidden."  (The audio version of the podcast is 1 hour 41 minutes long because it contains commercials, the commercial-free video version is 1 hour 31 minutes long.) 

                    Rogan interviewing Sean Carroll

The interview took place before the Coronavirus pandemic began, and it covered all sorts of topics.  Once again I had to start taking notes.  I was somewhat stunned when Sean Carroll started spouting what seemed to me to be total nonsense.  I had to listen to it again (and watch it) on Saturday morning as I was writing this comment.  I wanted to hear and understand exactly what Carroll was saying.   

The idea that got my attention was that Quantum Mechanics is impossible to understand!  At about the 42 minute mark in the video version, Prof. Carroll says, "In Quantum Mechanics, what we perceive is different from what it really is."  And from there he goes off into QM ideas that he considers to be valid, but which someone outside of QM would not see as valid.  To me, if something is impossible to understand, that almost certainly means it is wrong

At about the 47 minute mark Carroll starts talking about whether an electron is "wave like" or "like a particle."  And he goes off into all sorts of directions, as if theories are valid without any experimental evidence, because experiments can be misunderstood.  At about the 50 minute mark, Rogan ask Carroll if an atom is mostly empty space, as most people (including me) believe.  Carroll doesn't believe that.  Listening to that part again doesn't clarify things very much.  It suggests to me that he's arguing that empty space is not empty space because it is filled with gravitational fields, therefore an atom is not mostly empty space because there are fields which keep the electron from escaping and also keep it from crashing down into the nucleus.  The problem, of course, is that some particles, like gamma ray particles, can go through those fields inside an atom just as easily as space ships can travel though gravitational fields without bumping into anything.   

At about the 54 minute mark, Rogan asks why so many people seem to dispute Quantum Mechanics ideas, and Prof. Carroll replies, "We use Quantum Mechanics but we do not try very hard to understand it.  You can talk to physicists on the street and they will tell you that understanding reality is not their job."  Moments later he says, "Because they don't care about these questions, they will often be sloppy in answering." Then he says, "Even if you are a super-duper expert at solving the equations and making predictions, understanding what is going on is a whole nother activity that a lot of physicists do not try very hard to do."  What he seems to be saying is that those physicists believe their job is to compute the equations, and if the equations do not fit reality, that's not their concern.  They just modify their equations to fit what they believe.

Like Richard Dawkins, Sean Carroll is also an atheist, which says once again that he 100% believes things that cannot be proven.  What's so wrong about saying "I don't know" when you do not have enough information to be 100% certain of an answer?

At about the 1 hour 20 minute mark in the video they start talking about podcasts and how podcasting has changed their lives.  It used to be that they could only get to interview scientists and celebrities if they were writing a book, which would be once every few years, but now they can routinely get the same people to talk on a podcast.  Rogan does about 4 podcast per week, and Carroll does about 1 a week.

When I finished listening to the Joe Rogan-Sean Carroll podcast on Friday evening, I then started on Joe Rogan's interview of another scientist, Lex Fridman, who is a research scientist at MIT working on human-centered artificial intelligence.  The audio podcast is 3 hours and 27 minutes long.  While the podcast was somewhat enjoyable, not one word was said about artificial intelligence in the first hour and a half, at which time I turned off my MP3 player and went to bed.  Instead, they talked about at least a dozen other subjects: Joe Biden vs Donald Trump, the movie "Ground Hog Day," being able to share your passions with others, and on and on and on.  Yet, it was interesting. 

On Saturday, I organized my bookmarks and my podcast copies.  Then in the evening, instead of listening to Joe Rogan podcasts on my MP3 player, I connected my small laptop to my 46-inch flat screen TV in my living room and I watched some Joe Rogan interviews on that big screen.  I watched the rest of the Lex Fridman interview, skipping over parts that seemed repetitious or of no interest to me.  Never did they talk about artificial intelligence.

Then I watched a bit of an interview with stand-up comic Duncan Trussell because it was the most recent podcast, created on that same day.  It didn't hold my interest, so I switched to the next most recent podcast, an interview with comic Tom Green, recorded on April 24.  They talked about the pandemic and about conspiracy theories.  It held my interest all the way through, but there was nothing in it worth mentioning here.  What it told me was that I need to plan ahead and make a list of the old episodes that seem most interesting.  That way I can go directly to the episode, instead of hunting through the entire list and sampling those that might be interesting.  Joe Rogan has interviewed Bernie Sanders, Edward Snowden, Brian Cox, Sir Roger Penrose, Elon Musk, Dr. Phil, Bill Maher, Robert Downey, Jr., Rosanne Barr, Mel Gibson, and right-wing nut job Alex Jones, among many others.  Plus, he's interviewed many people more than once, so I can try listening to an earlier interview with Sean Carroll to see if it clarifies anything about Quantum Mechanics, or one that is even earlier.

I awoke this morning thinking about an alternate name for Quantum Mechanics: Myth Math.  I wondered what the folks on the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum would think of it.  When I visited a thread about time dilation, I saw that a physicist had posted this:

NOTHING in physics can be proven -- proof is a MATHEMATICAL
concept inapplicable to the world we inhabit.    

Sigh.  So much to do, and on top of everything else I keep remembering that I also have a science fiction novel that I want to revise and self-publish.

Comments for Sunday, April 19, 2020, thru Saturday, Apr. 25, 2020:

April 23, 2020 - Yesterday, I stumbled upon and listened to an interesting podcast about the Coronavirus pandemic that I tried to save as an MP3 file, but each time I tried, it wouldn't download.  And, worst of all, I forgot to bookmark or record the link.  I just moved on to other things when I finished listening to the podcast and gave up on downloading a copy. 

The most interesting part of the podcast was when the medical expert talked about the real possibility that some of the people protesting against social distancing and business closings might decide to deliberately get infected.  They see the Coronavirus as just another type of flu that probably won't be very serious for them, but when they recover they will be immune.  And that will put them in high demand as workers.  Plus they will be able to go where they want and do what they want because they are immune.  And woe betide anyone who tries to stop them!

There's a certain logic behind such a thing, but it ignores all the people you might infect before you know you are infected and while you are recovering from being infected.  You could end up killing dozens of people, including many in your own family.

This morning, as a result of that Joe Rogan podcast I wrote about yesterday, I did research into "repulsive gravity."  I researched the term via Google Scholar and found many articles on the topic, but they all seem to be pure speculation based upon math equations.  My paper on "Logical vs Mathematical Universes" may also be considered speculation, but it's logical speculation based upon known facts, not mathematical speculation.  I was looking for support for my ideas, even if it is just more logical speculation, but mathematical speculation isn't support.

Lastly, I listened to another Joe Rogan podcast yesterday.  It was his interview and talk with English biologist Richard Dawkins.  It was the second time I've been disappointed by Dawkins.  I forgot that back on August 14, 2019, I finished listening to his book "Science in the Soul" and was somewhat disappointed by it.  In fact, it made me decide I need to be more careful on what books I burn onto CDs for listening while driving.  I got through the podcast okay, since it was an interesting discussion between Dawkins and Rogan, but to me a scientist cannot be an atheist, since that makes him closed-minded.  Without solid evidence one way or the other, he or she can only be an agnostic.   

April 22, 2020
- I watched the movie
"Good Will Hunting" last night, but before doing that, in the late afternoon yesterday, after turning off my computer for the day, I started listening to a podcast.  For some reason I had become curious about Joe Rogan's podcasts, probably because I'd just read somewhere yesterday that he was one of the most popular podcasters around. 

A search through my own web site shows that I first discovered podcasts on February 16, 2019.  And, two days later, on February 18 I had tried listening to one or two of Joe Rogan's shows, but I found them uninteresting.  It was probably because they were simply his most recent podcasts and the discussions were about topics of no interest to me.  Or maybe it was because his podcasts seem to always begin with a lot of advertising.  Anyway, yesterday, as I looked through the directory of his shows (he's done 1,460 of them), I saw that he had interviewed a number of scientists, such as Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Richard Dawkins and Brian Greene.

Curious, I downloaded the Brian Greene episode into my MP3 player, and after turning off my computer for the day, I started listening to it.  Wow!  I think I can safely say it was the most fascinating podcast I had ever heard.  I even started taking notes, lots of notes.  The first note I made was about a statement from Dr. Greene that we've been programmed to not understand!  I'm not a Brian Greene fan, and that kind of statement is one reason why.  Prof. Greene was saying we are programmed to not understand Quantum Mechanics because it is counter-intuitive (and makes predictions).  We're programed to accept what is intuitive.   In a way that is true, but I just didn't like it to be phrased that way.

The next note I made was that Prof. Greene became fascinated with mathematics at age 5.  As he grew older, Greene enjoyed doing math that no one else had done. (Greene also mentioned that his father was a comedian!  And his brother is a Hare Krishna.)

Prof. Greene talked about tying to discover something new and failing every time, because as soon as he found something that was new to him, he'd do research and find that others had discovered it first. 

Then he discovered something that was wrong, and no one else had ever discovered it was wrong.  That opened  a whole new way of thinking for him.

Things really got interesting when Greene started talking about "repulsive gravity."  And he talked about "repulsive gravity" being the force behind behind the Big Bang.  It is what forced everything to go flying apart.  And he said Einstein's equations predict repulsive gravity.  Wow!  I've probably heard of repulsive gravity before, but it was not something I'd thought about when discussing the Big Bang.  And it definitely should have been.  That doesn't make my Big Bang paper wrong, it just makes it incompleteEvidently people have been talking about repulsive gravity as being an alternative to "dark energy" since 2012 or earlier.

At about the 53 minute mark in the 2 hour and 36 minute podcast, Greene starts talking about giving a paid talk at a cult meeting.  His agent had set it up without knowing that it was a religious cult.  The cult was that of Judy Zebra Knight who "channels" a spiritual entity named Ramtha.  Greene expected to be booed off the stage, but everyone in the cult thoroughly enjoyed his talk, and they explained why. 

Then a couple minutes later in the podcast Greene and Rogan talk about a 2006 movie I never heard of, "What the Bleep!?: Down the Rabbit Hole."  It's a movie I definitely want to see.   Then they talked about William James and his 1896 book "The Will to Believe" (which is available for free on-line), then about taking hallucinogens, then about the power of group activities, which made me recall my first Christmas in the Air Force when I sang Christmas songs with a thousand other guys, a memory that is burned into my brain. 

I could go on and on, but I'll conclude by stating once again that it was the most fascinating podcast I have ever heard.  And I was totally surprised that comedian Joe Rogan was well informed on virtually everything Brian Greene talked about, and he could go toe to toe with Greene if they disagreed about something. 

Some day I'll listen to that podcast again, but before doing that I have at least two dozen other Joe Rogan podcasts I want to listen to first (and dozens of WTF podcasts).

Lastly, "Good Will Hunting" is still an excellent movie, but it and the Brian Greene interview me wonder about something.  Early in the movie there is a scene where Will Hunting, who works as a janitor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT ), sees
a difficult mathematics problem on a blackboard in a hallway that a professor had written there as a challenge for his graduate students. Effortlessly, Hunting writes the solution to the problem, without leaving any indication of who did it. 

That reminded me of a scene from the 1951 movie "The Day the Earth Stood Still," which I also have in my DVD collection and have watched at least ten times.  The scene is where the alien, Klaatu, visits an Einstein-like scientist and writes a solution to a math problem that the scientist has on his blackboard.

All I could think about at that moment was "pattern recognition" and how someone might see an incorrect equation as an error due to the fact that what is on the left side of the equal sign is not equal to what is on the right side.  It's undoubtedly far more complicated than that, and there seems to be dispute as to which side of the brain is most responsible for pattern recognition, such as facial recognition

So, it's something else I need to research when I find the time.  And I think I need to make time to research it.  I cannot continue with my idea of a new paper on "Left Brain vs Right Brain Physics" without learning more about how pattern recognition works.

I feel overwhelmed with things I need and want to do.  But they are things to do all by myself at home, which is probably want most others want and cannot find during this pandemic times.  So, I really cannot complain.

April 21, 2020 - Instead of working on my paper about
"Left Brain vs Right Brain Physics," I keep thinking of things I've read or seen about the topic.  I need things I can use as references for the paper.  This morning I awoke remembering the book "Thinking: Fast and Slow," which I reviewed back on May 17, 2015Amazon's review of the book says,
In the international bestseller, Thinking, Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman, the renowned psychologist and winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical.
The book is on my Kindle, so it's not easy to browse through, but I saved 22 pages of notes.  Maybe they'll contain something I can use as a reference.

I also remember watching the movie "The Man Who Knew Infinity" and writing a comment about it on August 24, 2016.  In that comment I wrote:

The Rotten Tomatoes movie review site gives it a 62% favorable rating (audiences give it a 78% favorable rating) and describes the movie this way:
"The Man Who Knew Infinity" is the true story of friendship that forever changed mathematics. In 1913, Srinivasa Ramanujan (Dev Patel), a self-taught Indian mathematics genius, traveled to Trinity College, Cambridge, where over the course of five years, forged a bond with his mentor, the brilliant and eccentric professor, G.H. Hardy (Jeremy Irons), and fought against prejudice to reveal his mathematic genius to the world.
While I found the movie interesting and certainly worth watching, I couldn't help but scratch my head over the absolute fascination mathematicians have with things that the average person would view as pointless and a waste of time.  Most of the movie involved Ramanujan and Hardy discussing obscure mathematical problems, but once in the movie they actually went through the steps of solving a problem.  It was a problem of how many ways you can add together whole numbers and get an answer of 4.  (1+1+1+1+1=4,  1+2+1=4,  2+2=4, etc.)  All I could do as I watched them go through the steps is wonder: "Who cares?!"
I don't want to over-simplify the situation.  Virtually everyone uses both sides of their brains, including mathematicians.  So, the issue seems to be: who uses the right side of their brain to solve a problem when they should be using the left side?  The answer would seem to be: Those people who do not require evidence to support their theories.  Here's a quote from Carl Sagan's "Broka's Brain" where he is discussing Einstein:
In the best scientific tradition he was open to new ideas but required that they pass rigorous standards of evidence. He was open-minded but skeptical about claims of planetary catastrophism in recent Earth history and about experiments alleging extrasensory perception, his reservations about the latter stemming from contentions that purported telepathic abilities do not decline with increasing distance between sender and receiver.
I've been through endless discussions with the people on the sci.physics.relativity forum where they demonstrate that experiments mean nothing to them, nor does evidence.  But how typical are they?

So, I'm doing research.  And I'm somewhat overwhelmed by all the stuff I'm finding, stuff which will require a lot of my time to read and sort through.  One of the things I remembered was the movie "Good Will Hunting."  I have it on DVD. My records show that the last time I watched it was on May 26, 2013.  I'll watch it tonight.  Maybe somewhere I'll find something that truly demonstrates that Quantum Mechanics mathematicians aren't interested in understanding the universe and how things work, they're only interested in mathematics.

April 20, 2020
- I haven't yet begun work on my paper about
"Left Brain vs Right Brain Physics," but I'm definitely thinking about it a lot.  My plan to obtain a Stalker II SDR radar gun to verify Einstein's theories (along with my understanding of how light and photons work) is a perfect example of Left Brain vs Right Brain conflicts.  I'm 99% certain the experiment will work, but Right Brain mathematicians are 100% certain the experiment won't work.  They are so certain that they cannot even be bothered with trying the experiment.  And, if the experiment works the way I think it will work, they will be 100% certain it is just a "trick" of some kind.  And, of course, they cannot be bothered with explaining or investigating some kind of "trick" that conflicts with their beliefs.

That's the basic problem.  If you think logically, and if the problem is very complex, you always acknowledge the fact that there could be some factor that you do not know about that might change things and make your answer less than 100% correct.  If you think emotionally, you are 100% certain of your answers almost all of the time.  If you are told you are wrong, you will be 100% certain that the person telling you that is a liar who is just making a personally attack on you for some agenda of his own.  And, if you find out for yourself that you were not 100% correct, then you will be 100% certain of your new answer and 100% certain that your previous answer was just misinterpreted by others -- probably deliberately as part of a personal attack.

Trump cartoon

This morning I wondered how something so obvious has not been thoroughly discussed a million times.  The answer seems to be the "herd instinct."  No one who is 99% certain is going to fight with people who are 100% certain if the conflict will put their job or reputation in jeopardy.  Most people seem to agree with the people around them just to avoid creating social problems.  They even VOTE the way people around them say they are going to vote, because they feel that the majority is probably right.  In reality, of course, the number of people who believe something has absolutely nothing to do with whether it is true or not.  At one time, everyone on earth believed the earth was flat.  That didn't make it flat.

I've often thought about what a terrific news story it would be to demonstrate that a certain type of radar gun can measure the speed of a box truck from inside the sealed back of the truck.  I could imagine the headline: "LOCAL MAN DOES THE IMPOSSIBLE!"  But, then I realized that no reporter is going to write such a story if there is any possibility that some highly respected local college physics professor is going to tell other reporters that it's just a trick of some kind.  How do you prove it is NOT a trick if you cannot prove the negative?  Why would a reporter believe me over a college physics professor when the subject is physics?

This morning I also wondered about something else: Would my paper
"Left Brain vs Right Brain Physics" be a paper about physics or about psychology?  How will I categorize it when I submit it to  I checked their list of categories and found they had 439 papers in a category titled:
History and Philosophy of Physics - including sociology of science
Looking through the recent papers submitted into that category, I found these titles among the most recent dozen:

Time-Space, Probability, and Physics

Interpreting Quantum Mechanics in Terms of Facts About the Universe

Analogy Between Special Relativity and Finite Mathematics

Something is Rotten in the State of Qed.

That last one seems interesting, but my intention wasn't to find something else to read, I was looking for papers that might point out what my paper will point out about right and left brain thinking in physics.   None of the above papers does that, as far as a casual glance can tell.

This morning, I also wanted to mention a couple books in my personal library that I bought about 40 years ago that evidently still resonate in my mind.  The books are:

The Right Brain
Broca's Brain

Hmm.  When I accessed Amazon to get the images above, they showed the price for a brand new paperback copy of "Broca's Brain" to be $1,012.90!  But, I digress.  "The Right Brain" is mostly about how the right half of our brain works and figures things out, mostly while our left brain is working on other things.  I've underlined hundreds of passages, but right now I can't find any that seems relevant to solving physics problems.  Skimming through "Broca's Brain" is the opposite situation.  I also underlined many passages, and most seem to have to do with how the left brain works, but without mentioning the two sides of the brain.  Here's a relevant quote that heads Chapter 6:
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle unless ... its falsehood would be more miraculous than the fact which it endeavors to establish.
                     -- David Hume, Of Miracles
Groan!  It's lunch time and I probably haven't made any solid points in this comment.  All I've done is ramble.  But, that is what happens when you try to figure things out while a constant stream of new information is trying to bury you.  It becomes tempting to just close your mind and think emotionally instead of logically.

April 19, 2020 -  I awoke this morning with an idea for what would likely be one of my final scientific papers.  The planned title for the paper is: "Left Brain vs Right Brain Physics."  It's the idea that puts all the pieces together for all the papers I've written.  The problem, of course, is: will anyone believe it?  I feel that doesn't really matter.  I'll just write up the idea and put it out there.  Take it or leave it.  It doesn't matter to me.  I'm not out to change any minds.  Left Brain physicists might agree, but they would be reluctant to say so, since it would put them in conflict with Right Brain physicists.  Like them, I learned long ago that you cannot use reason or logic to change the minds of Right Brain Physicists or Right Brain anything.  They think emotionally, not logically, so reason, logic and facts have no meaning to them. 

You can see the two modes of thinking in action in the news.  Last week, Right Wing extremists were out in force in Austin, Texas, and Lansing, Michigan claiming that the government has no right to issue orders to protect people if some people do not think they need to be protected or if they're willing to take the risks.  Such people are thinking emotionally, not logically.  Their motto is: "I'm smarter than everyone else, so no one is going to tell me what to do." That's Donald Trump's motto, too.  That's why virtually all of them are Trump supporters and why Trump is supporting them.  Trying to convince them that they are wrong is equivalent to telling them that you are smarter than they are, which makes it a personal challenge.  And such a challenge cannot be resolved with reason or logic, so it becomes a matter of who is willing to resort to force.   

In the world of science, Relativity is the credo of the Left Brain physicists who think logically, and Quantum Mechanics (and mathematics) is the credo of Right Brain physicists who think emotionally.   That is why there has been no meeting of the minds between them for 115 years.

How can a mathematician think emotionally?, you may ask.  The answer is in all the math-based theories that cannot be proved or disproved, such as String Theory and Multiple Universes.  To them, the math is "beautiful."  That is all they really care about.  The undeniable success of Quantum Mechanics is due to the fact that, using mathematics, they can predict what percent of the time some event will happen in a situation where no known experiment can determine exactly what is causing different events.  Right Brain Mathematicians enjoy playing and calculating the odds, while Left Brain Scientists want to know what is causing event X to happen 95% of the time, and more importantly, what is causing event X to NOT happen 5% of the time.  Left Brain Scientists wonder about cause and effect and the logic behind the events.  Right Brain mathematicians do not care about cause and effect, they only care about the beautiful math equations.

Nowhere is that as clear to me as in my arguments on the sci.physics.relativity discussion group.  The thread I started on April 10 about "Another confirmation of Gravitational Time Dilation," which was supposed to be about the recent Tokyo Skytree experiment, is still generating arguments.  But all the arguments are now about who is smarter.  Plus there is a lot of name-calling.  Before I abandoned the discussion, I tried to get them to think logically about what kind of experiment would fully resolve the question of whether a clock at a higher altitude actually ticks faster than a clock at a lower altitude, or if the measured differences are just the result of some incorrect way the experiment was performed.  They are not interested in resolving any dispute with an experiment.  So, they are just tossing math equations at one another and arguing about whose equation best fits the situation.  Then they call each other names when the other person doesn't agree. 

I've saved parts of 75 different threads on that forum, going back to Feb. 12, 2017, and I'd bet there was NEVER a situation in any of those discussions where someone said, "Ah!  I see!  Yes, you are right and I was wrong.  Thanks for clarifying things for me."  Or words to that effect.  And I seriously doubt there was such an admission in any of the of 66,542 discussion threads that have taken place on that forum in all the years that sci.physics.relativity has been available. 

You cannot reason with people who only think emotionally.  And, it seems that if I want to talk with people who think logically, I first have to find a way to convince them that I am also thinking logically.  Most of the time you cannot do that because Left Brain scientists have built barriers to keep away the Right Brain mathematicians who want to argue that they can prove mathematically that you are mistaken and that proves they are smarter than you are. 

As stated at the top of this comment, a paper about
"Left Brain vs Right Brain Physics" might be one of my final papers.  I've confirmed that the US government is going to be sending me a check for $1,200 as part of the stimulus program.  I'm still looking for a "Type-1" radar gun to demonstrate that another belief by Right Brain mathematicians is wrong.  If I cannot borrow such a radar gun or get someone else to demonstrate it for me, the check will provide the option of me buying a used Stalker II SDR radar gun, so I can perform as many experiments as I want.  But I'd still need to be more than 99% certain about how the Staker II SDR radar gun works before I'd spend more than a hundred dollars to buy such a gun.  I may be thinking about time dilation and the speed of light while 99% of the rest of the world is mainly worrying about the COVID-19 pandemic, but I still understand how to be cautious.

Comments for Sunday, April 12, 2020, thru Saturday, Apr. 18, 2020:

April 18, 2020
- Groan!  I don't think I've ever had so many things going on at the same time before.  This morning I had a problem with one of my credit cards as I was trying to pay a bill on-line.  So, I tried a different card.  Same response!  I then called that second credit card company and they informed me that the company that billed me never accessed their system to process my payment.  There's nothing wrong with my credit card.  So, does the company that tried to bill me use the wrong kind of computer software, software that ceased to function on April 15 as my software did?  Or is there some other issue?  I dunno.  It's a weekend and their support center tells me their billing department is only open "
Monday through Friday from 8:00AM to 5:00PM Central Time."  The problem ticket will evidently have to wait until then.


Meanwhile, I'm trying to figure out how to get around a problem that Google seems to have created.  Until a few months ago, I could easily obtain the URL address for pdf files.  Then Google suddenly changed things.  Now, if I search for a scientific paper in pdf format via Google, Google will not give me the address.  They will just ask if I want to view the pdf on-line or if I want to save it to a file in my computer.  That causes problems if I want to provide the address location of the paper to readers of this web site.  

Meanwhile, an interesting discussion I was having on the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum about the Tokyo Skytree time dilation experiment has gone off the rails.  Someone named "Pat Dolan" started a screwball argument about the United States Air Force disagreeing with the National Institute for Science and Technology (NIST) about how time dilation works in the GPS system, but the link he provided to support his claims says nothing about the Air Force.  The link did, however, provide me with a name of a NIST scientist to research, and I found many articles by that scientist about time dilation and the GPS system.  So, I've got a lot more things to read.


April 16, 2020 - Wow!  Yesterday was a panic day!  And I definitely didn't need such a day during these pandemic times. 

In the morning, I wrote a comment for April 15.  Then I tried to upload it to my web site host's computer just as I've done a couple thousand times in the past.  This time, however, I got two error messages I'd never seen before:
421 - Sorry, cleartxt sessions and weak ciphers are not accepted on this server.
421 - Please reconnect using TLS security mechanisms.
Huh?  I had no idea what the messages were saying, other than that I couldn't update my site.  I did a total reboot to see if that would fix things.  It didn't.  I remembered getting an email months ago that used the term "TLS."  The email had arrived on February 19, but I couldn't decipher it, so I basically ignored it.  Yesterday I paid the price for that.

The first people I contacted where people on a SeaMonkey discussion forum.  Seamonkey is the browser I use to update my web site.  They talked tech talk, but I was able to decipher that updating my web site using SeaMonkey was no longer possible.  I was stunned that no one was already discussing that on the forum.  When I asked:
Am I the only person on the planet who was using SeaMonkey to maintain a web site????
The answer was:
That is quite possible ;), assuming how many issues were known for file upload even 10 years ago.
They recommended using FileZilla.  And so I had to figure out what the hell FileZilla is and how it works. 

I still can't explain exactly what was going on, but my web site host finally stepped me through what I needed to do to be able to update this web site again.  I just did it to put the April 15 comment on the site, and now I'm doing it to see if I can repeat the process with a comment for April 16.

Assuming that it will work, then I'll try to get back to thinking about science issues once again.  Whew!

April 15, 2020
- Hmm.  This morning, as I was going through my daily routine of looking through the log file for this web site, checking to see who was visiting this site and who was trying to hack this site, I noticed another series of posts by the person who I'm 90% certain is "Dono" from the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum.   First, using an IP address that traces back to Amsterdam, Holland, he created ten log entries that looked like this (with my highlighting in read, plus I xx'ed out the web site address he provided): - - [14/Apr/2020:13:14:33 -0500] "GET /Moron_Ed_does_not_know_how_to_download_paid_science_
gonna_understand_it HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0
(Windows NT 10.0; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0"
The guy was responding to the comment I wrote yesterday where I mentioned a Nature magazine article about gravitational time dilation that was not available for free, and I didn't want to pay $32 to buy a pdf copy.  "Dono" knew where to get a free copy of the paper, and he was telling me how to do it!  Not only that, the next five log entries contained the full URL for the paper.  I copied the URL and pasted it into the URL search box that is at the top of nearly every browser window and, PRESTO!, I was provided with a pdf copy of the article.  (I'm not sure about the legality of any of this, so I'm not providing the links.)

I still need to study the article to see where it contains something I can quote to show that the body of the article says the same thing as the the first line says:

A clock at a higher altitude ticks faster than one at a lower altitude, in accordance with Einstein’s theory of general relativity.
Of course, if the body of the Nature article actually contained something that unequivocally states that clocks at different altitudes all tick at the same rate, and that that first line of the article is total nonsense, wouldn't "Dono" and "Tom" and others on the sci.physics.relativity forum have been quoting it everywhere?  They can't do that, so what they are doing is waiting for me to show them where the article agrees with the first line, so that they can hurl insults and claim I do not know how to read.  Like Donald Trump and everyone else who thinks that anyone who disagrees with them must be wrong, facts mean nothing.  They have their own "facts," beginning with the "fact" that anyone who disagrees with them is insulting their intelligence, and the proper response is to do the same to them, NOT to examine the facts.    

Meanwhile, I has started out this morning with different intentions as to what to write a comment about.  My plan was to write a comment about the audio book I listened to yesterday.  The book was "Farewell My Lovely" by Raymond Chandler, unabridged, 7 hours and 23 minutes long, and narrated by Elliott Gould, who played Philip Marlowe in the 1973 movie "The Long Goodbye".

Farewell My Lovely

I started listening to it shortly after lunch, and I finished it at 10:40 p.m.  The Amazon summary description of the book is:

Philip Marlowe's about to give up on a completely routine case when he finds himself in the wrong place at the right time to get caught up in a murder that leads to a ring of jewel thieves, another murder, a fortune-teller, a couple more murders, and more corruption than your average graveyard.
The "completely routine case" is the case where a huge brute of a guy who just got out of prison, Moose Malloy, hires private eye Philip Marlowe to find his former girlfriend, Velma, who he hasn't seen in 8 years.  That part I remembered from the 1975 Robert Mitchum movie I watched on TCM a couple months ago.  The rest is just complicated fun as Marlowe tries to figure things out while also avoiding getting killed.

Best of all, the book kept me from thinking about idiotic arguments about science for most of yesterday.

April 14, 2020
- My latest arguments on the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum seem to be coming to an end.  Their arguments have gone beyond absurd. They insist that when a science magazine states that clocks run faster at higher altitudes, they do not really mean that.  The "popular" science magazines are just telling the general public that because the public is too ignorant to understand real science.  Or, as "tjrob137" put it:

The POPULAR articles you reference are not telling the story correctly.  They have "simplified" it for their audience, and in doing so they get it wrong.
Or, as "Odd Bodkin" put it:
Why is it that a popular science article cannot be made laypeople-accessible, interesting, AND scientifically accurate?

The answer is that physics is an expert system. Like all expert systems, it takes 10,000 hrs at least to get to reasonable competency.
That is also their reasoning for why they believe that all the web site articles about the Tokyo Skytree time dilation experiments are total nonsense.  However, when I pointed out to them that the Nature magazine article written to inform professional scientists about the experiment begins with a sentence that says the same thing that the "popular" web site articles say:
A clock at a higher altitude ticks faster than one at a lower altitude, in accordance with Einstein’s theory of general relativity.
the response from "Odd Bodkin" was:
You’re reading an abstract. Not the article.
Don’t substitute a glorified subtitle for the content.
So, the abstract for the Nature article is also nonsense??  It's just a "glorified subtitle"?  Unfortunately, the article is not yet available to read for free.  It costs at least $8.99 just to "borrow" it for awhile, and $32 to buy the pdf version.  I'm not going to spend money just to argue with someone who won't believe anything I say, so I cannot provide quotes from within the article that would undoubtedly say the same thing that first sentence of the abstract says.  That was demonstrated in other arguments where the same claim was made and the article contents were available for free.  Plus, of course, when I point out what Einstein actually wrote, they just argue that that isn't what Einstein meant.  What Einstein meant was what the mathematicians believe, not what Einstein actually wrote. 

The people on that forum now have no further arguments other than to hurl insults.  And, I think I now fully understand why it is impossible to have an intelligent discussion with them.  I previously thought it was because they were True Believers who think that mathematics explain everything in the universe, and that makes it impossible for their equations to be wrong.  Now I'm thinking that that is not how they think, it is just a symptom of how they think.  They think the same way Donald Trump thinks: emotionally, not logically.  If they believe something, then any disagreement with what they believe is a personal attack, and they will respond with a personal attack. 

Three years ago, I created a blog page titled "Trump thinks emotionally, NOT logically."  For months it has been the most popular page on that blog.  The page contains a couple interesting quotes from Eric Hoffer's book "The True Believer":

The fanatic cannot be weaned away from his cause by an appeal to his reason or moral sense. He fears compromise and cannot be persuaded to qualify the certitude and righteousness of his holy cause. But he finds no difficulty in swinging suddenly and wildly from one holy cause to another. He cannot be convinced but only converted. His passionate attachment is more vital than the quality of the cause to which he is attached.
Both by converting and antagonizing, he shapes the world in his own image.
That is what Trump is doing and what the people on the sci.physics.relativity forum are doing.  They are changing the world (and the facts) to fit their own personal beliefs.  If it is what they believe, then it cannot be wrong.

Trump is a genius

Trump cartoon

April 12, 2020
- Sometimes it seems like I'm twice as busy during this crazy "stay at home" period than I am in normal times.  In normal times I would be going to the gym four times a week, and I usually had somewhere else to go on the other days of the week.  Usually I could go for months without a single day when I did not drive my car somewhere, even when it was snowing.  Now, I'm only driving my car about 3 times a week.

What staying at home does is give me more time to do research.  Some might think that that would allow me to finish the research earlier, but in reality what it does is cause me to never finish.  Researching one thing causes me to want to research some related thing. 

Last week, that research caused me to find scientific articles about two key topics of interest to me: (1) time dilation and (2) the Big Bang Theory of the origin of the Universe.  I wrote comments about them on the 9th and 10th.  On the 10th I also started a new thread on the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum.  In a way, it was kind of a trap.  I knew what the reaction would be from some of the people who post to that forum, so I was very polite and strictly business.  The thread I started was simply titled "Another confirmation of Gravitational Time Dilation." Here is the entire post:

This morning I noticed an article titled "Scientists use the Tokyo Skytree to test Einstein’s theory of general relativity."  The link:

Another article about it:

The actual article is titled "Test of general relativity by a pair of
transportable optical lattice clocks."
It's at his link:

It was a "trap," of course, because many people on that forum are Quantum Mechanics mathematicians who do not believe that time dilation is real.  They view it as simply an illusion.  So, how would they react to another scientific experiment which confirms that time dilation is real?  I assumed they would react they same way they reacted to all previous experiments, but I wanted to be sure about that.  The first on-topic reply was from "Paparios" who wrote:
Their experiment involves using a (at least 450 meters long) fiber optic link to compare the "ticks" of the clocks. They are comparing the clock "ticks" at the same place (the ground of the Skytree tower?) while one of the clocks is on the top of the tower.

As all experiments comparing two atomic clocks, the "ticking" of every clock is not affected by being on the ground or at 100000 km of altitude. All clocks are "ticking" at exactly 1 second/second!!

The difference detected is explained by the use of SIGNALS, being transported through the fibers, which are used to make the comparison.
In other words, "Paparios" is suggesting that the people who did the experiment were incompetent and didn't realize that time did not actually run slower for the clock that was closer to the earth's surface, the difference in time was actually due to the fact that the clock at the top of the Tokyo Tower had a longer cable attached to it, and therefore the "SIGNALS" from that clock would take longer to reach the measuring equipment on the ground.  Unfortunately, "Paparios" is on my "Do Not Reply" list, so I couldn't respond directly.

Someone who I had never seen post before, "Oleg Mascato," wrote:

too bad you are not qualified to judge any of them.
I ignored that post an a bunch of others that were off topic and between other people.  Then "Tom" posted this (with my highlighting in red):
You keep repeating falsehoods. You CLEARLY do not understand this.

No matter how you move, and no matter where you might be located, time ALWAYS passes at its usual rate for you. This is directly related to Einstein's first postulate of SR, and the fact that in GR all local physics is as in SR.

The correct statements corresponding to yours are: the faster you move RELATIVE TO SOME LOCALLY INERTIAL FRAME, the slower your clock ticks RELATIVE TO THAT FRAME. The closer you get to a large gravitational mass, the slower your clock ticks RELATIVE TO A CLOCK FAR AWAY FROM ALL MASSES.

Of course those relative clock comparisons are performed using SIGNALS, and both effects are due to HOW THE SIGNALS ARE MEASURED, and not any effect on the clocks.

You found POPULAR articles that do not describe the physics accurately. In an attempt to simplify the situation they discuss "time running more slowly", when that is not actually the case; the actual situation is more subtle and more complicated to describe.

He actually used his full name to sign the post, but I'm not going to show it here.  It was the response I was waiting for.  Tom was saying the lower clock did NOT run slower, it was just "HOW SIGNALS ARE MEASURED" that caused the difference.  He was repeating an argument he had made many times before.  He was claiming that the people who actually performed the experiment and wrote the paper claimed one thing, while the people who just wrote about the experiment in newspapers and on web sites wrote something totally different.  They wrote "falsehoods."

I responded to Tom's post with this:

So, Tom, you believe that when I show you a SCIENCE article I am
"repeating falsehoods"??   And you think *I* am the one who does not understand?  YOU understand that the science reports are FALSEHOODS??
and I added this:
So, it is a MASSIVE CONSPIRACY?  You're saying that intelligent people like you (and, of course, there is no one else like you) are DELIBERATELY LYING to the rest of the world, because everyone else is too stupid to understand what you understand.  And you want to keep things that way.

Why did the scientists who performed the experiment in Tokyo perform the experiment and write about it?  Is it part of the conspiracy?  Do you believe that they have to continue to do experiments and lie about them or .....  or what?  The ignorant people might catch on?
Meanwhile, "Paparios" posted this:
1) The atomic clocks, in the experiment, are not side to side but they are separated by at least 450 meters. How do you make the "ticking" comparison in that case?

The answer: they use a fiber optic cable to transfer SIGNALS indicating the "ticking" of the top atomic clock, so they can compare it to the bottom atomic clock. The properties of that communication channel produce the changes related to the gravitational time dilation.

If they take those properties into account and substract them from the received signals, the result is that both "ticking" rates are exactly the same.

2) In fact, to make the comparison, they do not use the "ticking" rate.
They, in fact, compare the accumulated number of "ticks" in a certain period of time: clock A ticked Na times in 50 hours, while clock B ticked Nb times in the same period, as measured in the bottom site.
I responded to Tom's post a second time (and to all the other posts) with this:
Hmm.  So, people on this forum believe that telling someone just the opposite of what is true is not lying?  It is "dumbing down" complicated information?

And no one is CONSPIRING to do this?  It's just the natural order of things when smart people have to deal with dumb people?

Why print the articles at all?  Who tells what crap they must tell people?  Why would agree?  What happens if they do not go along?

And isn't it the SCIENTISTS who are stupid if they believe that "how the signals are measured" is what causes the INVALID information that they must tell the public is true?

Wouldn't even a dumb non-scientist see that before you compare the tick rates of two clocks that are at different altitudes, you need to
compare them when they are side by side?  If you have two clocks that are side by side with one clock connected to a display by a 6-foot cable and the other connected to the display by a 1300-foot cable, if the two displays show the clocks are ticking at the same rate, doesn't that mean that the cable does not change the information?

And if you then move the clock with the 1300 foot cable to the top
of a tower and make a second comparison, how are the "signals" the cause of the difference?  Isn't the only difference the difference in the altitudes of the two clocks?

Aren't you saying that it is the scientists who are too dumb to explain things so that non-scientists can understand?
And then, after doing a bit more research, I posted this:
If people on this forum believe that all the scientists are doing is
giving the public WRONG information, why do it in so many places?

Here's a YouTube video about the experiment:

At about the 3:30 mark they state that they first tested the clocks at the same level.  Do you think they were too dumb to do the ground test with different lengths of cables?

More articles about it:

Why do you think the scientist are so determined to have people believe the nonsense that they know is not true?  
This morning, as I was writing this comment, I also realized that it would be the lower clock that would run slower.  Therefore, if the equipment was on the ground, the "SIGNALS" coming from the top of the tower would have to travel faster through the cable, not slower.

It also appears that they have stopped responding.  I seriously doubt that I changed any minds.  I think it is just their tactic of walking away from any discussion of facts that challenges their beliefs.  But, they might add something.  I'll keep watching.  I may prompt them to respond further by mentioning that the lower clock will run slower, not the clock at the end of the 1,300 foot cable.

In my blog page about "The 10 DUMBEST beliefs in physics," I list this as #2:

#2. Scientists routinely LIE to the public.

I spent a lot of time discussing this belief with mathematician physicists.  They go to great pains to avoid using the word "lie."  Instead, they say that scientists "dumb down" or "vulgarize" explanations of their work for the public, because the public is "too dumb" to understand what is really happening in science and particularly in physics.
I created that page on February 26, 2018.  Not much has changed in the past 2 years.  When you find the science journal papers the scientists wrote, the journal articles always say the same things that the "dumbed down" articles say.  That's something else I neglected to mention in the sci.physics.relativity debate.  The article in NATURE written by the Japanese scientists has this as the first sentence in the abstract:
A clock at a higher altitude ticks faster than one at a lower altitude, in accordance with Einstein’s theory of general relativity.
So, were the scientists also "dumbing down" their work so that other scientists can understand what they did?  I'll have to ask the people on the forum.  Or maybe they already saw that, and that's why they stopped posting.

Comments for Sunday, April 5, 2020, thru Saturday, Apr. 11, 2020:

April 10, 2020 - This morning as I did my usual morning chores, which includes checking the latest news, I found an article titled "Scientists use the Tokyo Skytree to test Einstein's theory of general relativity."  It's a report on yet another experiment verifying gravitational time dilation as predicted by Albert Einstein.  The article begins with this:
In another verification of the validity of Einstein's theory of general relativity, published in Nature Photonics, scientists from the RIKEN Center for Advanced Photonics and Cluster for Pioneering Research, with colleagues, have used two finely tuned optical lattice clocks, one at the base and one on the 450-meter observatory floor of Tokyo Skytree, to make new ultraprecise measurements of the time dilation effect predicted by Einstein's theory of general relativity.
Checking further, I found another article with the same title but written by the experimenters, and I found the abstract for the actual article, which is titled "Test of general relativity by a pair of transportable optical lattice clocks."

So, I added that experiment as #12 on my "List of Time Dilation Experiments." Then I created a new thread about it on the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum.  Of course, "Dono" was the first to respond, since he seems to be tracking my every move lately while causing insults to appear on my web site logs nearly every morning.  While I still cannot be 100% certain that "Dono" is behind the insults, I'm now confidently about 90% certain.   This morning he caused 15 of these to appear on my logs: - - [09/Apr/2020:12:08:39 -0500] "GET /Old_Fart_Imbecile_Old_Fart_Imbecile_Old_Fart_Imbecile_
Old_Fart_Imbecile_Old_Fart_Imbecile_ HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-"
"Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0"
And 10 of these: - - [09/Apr/2020:12:10:03 -0500] "GET /IMBECILE_ED_insists_in_repeating_his_errors_when_
HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:68.0)
Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0"
And 5 of these: - - [09/Apr/2020:12:10:45 -0500] "GET /AIN'T_NO_WONDER_YOU_ARE_BEING_CALLED_
"-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101
And when he responded to my post to the sci.physics.relativity forum within a few minutes after I started the new thread, he wrote:
You first non-crank post, Ed. Could it be that you are turning  a corner, all those beatings may have jarred your brain.
So, he talks about me "being called an idiot everywhere" when I puts things on my log file and he talks about me getting "all those beatings" when posts to the forum.  He fantasizes that I'm getting insulted by people other than the trolls like him on the sci.physics.relativity forum, when in reality I'm getting lots of "likes" when I post elsewhere, I get people following me on and elsewhere, and new people are reading my papers on every day.  Plus, I'm not sure exactly why, but this morning I got a flood of new first-time visitors to this web site.  I'm hoping it is because of the recent news about the expanding universe and how it relates to my paper on Logical vs Mathematical Universes.

It is all certainly keeping me busy in these unusual times.

April 9, 2020
- This afternoon, thinking I didn't have anything to write a comment about, except for another batch of insults on my web site log file from the guy who is most likely "Dono" from the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum, I decided to listen to some podcasts.  The first podcast I listened to was interesting but not worth a comment.  The second was terrific and definitely worth mentioning here.  It was a "Point of Inquiry" podcast that consisted of an interview with Kurt Andersen, author of "Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire," which I have partially read on my Kindle.  The title of the podcast, however, is "How Irrationality Worsened the  Pandemic."  While it was an truly interesting interview with a lot of stuff about the Coronavirus pandemic and how Trump is getting just about everything wrong, it was what happened next that caused me to write this comment. 

I did a Google search for "Kurt Andersen" to see what other books he had written, and the bottom of that page, Google provided a link to a news article that they figured might be of interest to me, based upon my past searches.  The article was titled "A widely held theory about the universe expanding has just been contradicted."   The title grabbed me, so I had to read the article.  It begins with this (with my highlighting in red):

The prevailing theory, known as the isotropy hypothesis, argues that the universe is not only expanding but doing so at the same rate in all directions. But a new study suggests that may not be the case at all.

In a study published Wednesday in the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics, astronomers challenge this cornerstone theory of cosmology. The results suggest that while the universe is expanding, it is not expanding at the same rate in all directions.

The Astronomy and Astrophysics article it is talking about is filled with complex mathematics and is difficult to decipher, but it begins with this:
The isotropy of the late Universe and consequently of the X-ray galaxy cluster scaling relations is an assumption greatly used in
astronomy. However, within the last decade, many studies have reported deviations from isotropy when using various cosmological
probes; a definitive conclusion has yet to be made.
The article I was reading seemed to be supporting my most recent scientific paper, "Logical vs Mathematical Universes." 

I went back to the Google information and found a second link there to another article on the same subject, titled "Are Some Parts of the Universe Expanding Faster than Others?  Maaaaybe."   That second article didn't add much to what the first said, but it caused me to hunt for some email address when I could send them a copy of my paper, since it appears to solve their mystery.  Unfortunately, I couldn't find any useful email addresses.  But I'll keep trying.

The only mystery I see is the mystery of why my solution isn't the totally obvious solution.   Evidently it requires a paradigm shift in the thought processes of a lot of mathematicians, but that can only be a good thing.

April 8, 2020
- Hmm.  I really should write some kind of paper about "The Three Paradigms."  My discussion about "contradictory postulates" with "beda pietanza" on the sci.physics.relativity forum has ended.  It appears he can only discuss his paradigm where the speed of light and objects are measured relative to the imaginary "ether" or the paradigm he is trying to debunk, where the speed of light and objects are measured as being c relative to both the emitter and the receiver.  Just like everyone else, he refuses to discuss Einstein's paradigm where all motion is measured relative to the speed of light.

Meanwhile, that prankster who has been insulting me by causing attempted file accesses to appear on my daily log files for my web site did something very unusual and enlightening yesterday.  Shortly after 1 p.m., he created this log entry by trying to GET a file with a name he made up to insult me: - - [07/Apr/2020:13:09:39 -0500] "GET /Typical_
 403 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0"
It's interesting to me for a number of reasons: (1) the IP address traces to a location in Amsterdam, Holland, (2) for years I have blocked all accesses to my web site from all IP addresses that begin with 185 because it seemed like everyone with such an IP address was a hacker, and (3) within the next minute and a half, he posted 4 more messages with the same insult from IP address which traces to a location in Zaanstad, Holland.

It appears he saw that he was unable to access my web site from those two IP addresses, so about 3 minutes later he did the same thing from IP address which traces to Dusseldorf, Germany.  When he saw he was able to access my site from that IP address, he then posted 5 copies each of two more parts to that same personal attack: - - [07/Apr/2020:13:15:49 -0500] "GET /just_like_he%20insists_in_repeating_his_errors_when_
HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0;
rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0"
and - - [07/Apr/2020:13:16:20 -0500] "GET /AIN'T_NO_WONDER_YOU_ARE_BEING_CALLED_
404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:68.0)
Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0"
It seems clear that the prankster is not located in any of the locations identified by his IP addresses.  AND all the IP addresses he uses are close to IP addresses used by hackers who try to POST crap onto my web site.  That suggests that web sites at those IP addresses are used by hackers because they somehow allow people to hide their real IP addresses, just as the prankster was doing.

One would think that if he is so upset because I think there is a 80 percent chance that he is the same person who posts a "Dono" on the sci.physics.relativity forum, that seems to confirm that he IS "Dono."  Otherwise, why would he be bothered by my saying he is "Dono"? 

I always assumed that if I were to go to a coffee shop with a WiFi connection, I would be able to access the Internet without using my own IP address.  A little research, however, found that there are such things as "Virtual Private Networks" (VPNs) through which you can access the Internet without using you real IP address.  Some are even free.  But, I'd have to have a good reason to want to do that, so for now, I'm not even going to try it to see how it works. 

Lastly, this morning I saw that "
beda pietanza" started a new thread on the  sci.physics.relativity forum yesterday with the subject as "time dilatation seen through the eyes of God."   His post to start the thread includes this (including all of his typos and grammatical errors):
Trough the eyes of God, using God's capacity of seeing all the happenings, now everywhere, what would you see of the time rate of a moving away clock?

you better think before you answer, the destiny of your soul is at stake.

Since I want to save you, I will suggest you three answers:

1) if the absolute speed of the clock is smaller (than my abs.speed) then, its time rate is longer than the time rate of my clock.

2) if the absolute speed of the clock is larger (than my abs. speed) then, its time rate is slower than the time rate of my clock.

3) if the absolute speed of the clock is equal but in the opposite direction (than my speed) then, its time rate is equal to the time rate of my clock.

You don't have to apologize for not being able to know how to detect the absolute speed of moving clocks, it is not your fault: God himself made it difficult.
And within a few minutes, "Dono" replied with these comments:
Imbecile Beda Pietanza continues to pollute the forum .... with his idiocies
"1) if the absolute speed of the clock is smaller (than my abs.speed) then, its time rate is longer than the time rate of my clock."
There is no such thing as "absolute speed", old fart imbecile
His repeated use of the word "imbecile" has made me change my estimate of the chance that "Dono" is also putting those insults on my log file to 81 percent.

April 7, 2020
- The discussion I joined yesterday on the sci.physics.relativity UseNet forum doesn't appear to be going anywhere.  While "
beda pietanza" hasn't attacked my intelligence or called me names, he doesn't appear to want to discuss anything that would require a "paradigm shift" in this thinking.  While we seem to agree on many things, he won't change his mind about the "ether."  As part of his only reply to me overnight he wrote:
rather garbled wording versus which I can only state my position:

light speed is assessed by the combination of local environmental condition plus the effect of distant masses, light travels versus the local space (or ether), objects travel versus the local space (or ether) and therefore versus the local speed of light, the local speed of light has it's maximum value c only away from masses, where is also isotropic, any speed is absolute.

hope it is clear what I say, of course, you don't have to agree,
His English is far from perfect, which causes problems in both directions.  But it appears he believes that the only way to measure the speed of light or the speed of objects is to measure them relative to a "local space (or ether)."  

I responded to his latest comment, but I doubt he will respond to my response.  It seems he will prefer to agree that we disagree, and leave it at that.

Meanwhile, the prankster who has been insulting me by causing attempted accesses for non-existent web pages to appear on the daily log file for this web site appeared again yesterday with 10 attempted accesses that look like this on the log: - - [06/Apr/2020:19:10:37 -0500] "GET /Nice_try_IMBECILE_Ed___but_Dono_Ain't_writing_here___
grandeur HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0"
So, he reads my web site, and his post was his second in a row from Montreal, Canada.  Searching through my copies of discussions on the sci.physics.relativity forum, I found a post dated January 10, 2017, when David (Lord Kronos Prime) Fuller also called me an "imbecile."  The next time I see that word appear is on May 12, 2017, when "Dono" used it on me.  Then "Dono" did it again on August 18, 2017.  And there are many many more times that "Dono" used that term. 

This morning I wondered if I could search through all the messages in all the threads on the sci.physics.relativity forum instead of searching through my copies.  It turned out to be incredibly easy to do.  And I found post after post where "Dono" was using that term when referring to someone else.  I found a couple more from
David (Lord Kronos Prime) Fuller, and some from names I didn't know, but at least 50 percent of the times the term was used it was used by "Dono."  Then I found a discussion from February 25, 2015, where "Dono" used the term "narcissistic imbecile." So, I'm going to stick with my 80 percent chance estimate that "Dono" was behind the fake accesses to my web site.     

April 6, 2020
- While I haven't posted anything to the sci.physics.relativity discussion forum in long while, in my March 1 comment on this web site I mentioned a discussion thread there titled
[sic] "How does the moon able to maintain a stable orbit around the earth?"  At that time I was amazed that such a elementary question could have 95 posts from 15 different authors.  Today, as of this moment, it has 564 posts by 33 different authors, with 975 views.  What could they possibly be arguing about since February 24?????

I took a look at the latest page of their arguments (page 22 at the time) and found that the person who had started the thread, Ken Seto, had posted this on April 3:

You can't assert constant speed for the moon when it is in a constant state of tangential acceleration in a circular path.
You can't have a constant speed for an object that is not moving in a straight line? Why not?  All circular orbits would involve a constant speed.  The moon's orbit may not be perfectly circular, but you can still compute its average speed over the course of one orbit.  It is moving at an average speed of 2,288 miles per hour.
The first response to Seto's comment was from "Odd Bodkin" who wrote:

You insist that the moon cannot have constant speed because you insist there is tangential acceleration present. Meanwhile, sane people with familiarity with basic first year physics know that the tangential
acceleration is zero because the moon’s tangential speed is observed to be constant. They know it is constant because they watch its position in the sky, day after day.
I had to look up "tangential acceleration."  Their arguments all seem to be about word definitions, terminology, or the proper way to perform some calculation.  When they aren't doing that, they are hurling insults at one another.  Sigh! What a waste of time!

Then, this morning I noticed a new thread titled "contradictory postulates" that was started yesterday by "
beda pietanza," an unfamiliar name to me.  He began the thread with this (with my highlighting in bold and in red):
Quote from the translation of the original work of Einstein:

1) the same laws of electrodynamics and optics will be valid for all frames of reference for which the equations of mechanics hold good.1 We will raise this conjecture (the purport of which will hereafter be called the “Principle of Relativity”) to the status of a postulate.
2) and also introduce another postulate, which is only apparently irreconcilable with the former, namely, that light is always propagated in empty space with a definite velocity c which is independent of the state of motion of the emitting body.

The postulate 2) is experimentally true, even though, in many cases  the  postulate is reported as:

“the speed of light is the same in all inertial frames”.  

This version  of the  postulate 2, becomes only a mere application of the first postulate and the sentence “that light is always propagated in empty space with a definite velocity c which is independent of the state of motion of the emitting body.”” and is clearly contradictory:

The speed of light cannot be c in the open space and, at the same time, c in an all different moving inertial frame.
He began by stating that what Einstein wrote as his Second Postulate is not how "the postulate is reported."  In other words, it is not how the Second Postulate is stated in college physics textbooks.  I've been pointing that out for years. 

"Beda Pietanza" then goes on to explain how the First Postulate conflicts with the Second Postulate.  Einstein stated that they only appear to "conflict."

The post seemed to be crying out for me to respond.  I've got a dozen different science papers that explain things in detail.

So, I responded. 
"Beda Pietanza" then responded to my response in a very intelligent and polite  way.  And I responded to his response.  The conversation is still on-going at this moment.

Meanwhile, all the others on the forum are ignoring me, except for "Dono," one of the trolls on my "Do Not Reply" list.  "Dono" wrote (with my highlighting in red):

Utter imbecile Ed Lake resurfaces
snip link to Ed Lake's garbage
That response made me about 80 percent certain that "Dono" is the same person who was putting insults into my log files by attempting to access files that do not exist.  Example: - - [30/Mar/2020:15:58:32 -0500] "GET /Ed_Lake_is_a_narcissistic_IMBECILE_with_intellectual_
delusions_of_grandeur HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/68.0"
I did a search through old arguments, and "Dono" appears to be the only troll who repeatedly calls me an "imbecile."  In fact, while I didn't do a complete search, I couldn't find anyone else who ever called me that.

So, my joining the argument over "contradictory postulates" has been productive.

So far.

April 5, 2020 - I keep wanting to write something about Coronavirus conspiracy theories, and this seems to be the right time.  I have nothing else prepared this morning, even though there are a lot of other things I've been thinking about.  The subject first attracted my attention when I saw on the news that some railroad engineer crashed a diesel train engine through various barriers in an attempt to hit the USNS Mercy hospital ship in the Port of Los Angeles, ending up about 800 feet from his target.  According to NPR, the engineer wanted to wake America up to some government plot to take over something or other. 

"You only get this chance once. The whole world is watching. I had to. People don't know what's going on here. Now they will," [Eduardo] Moreno allegedly told a California Highway Patrol officer who apprehended him immediately after the incident.
crashed train

crashed train

According to a Newsweek article, there are at least 132 web sites promoting various Coronavirus conspiracy theories.  When you read the Newsweek article, however, you find that some of those sites are not actually promoting conspiracy theories, they are promoting false Coronavirus cures.

The most common conspiracy theories are, of course, that the Coronavirus is a biological weapon that was either purposely or accidentally released.

One conspiracy theory that makes absolutely no sense, is the theory that 5G cell phones are causing the pandemic.  According to one article on the subject:
New Agers, right-wingers, and QAnon conspiracy theorists think global elites are using 5G to spread the coronavirus pandemic.

The paranoia about 5G — the industry term for the fifth generation of wireless communications infrastructure — has risen for the last few years, but as the world battles the pandemic, a baseless hoax has spread that the technology that runs cellphones could secretly be causing the outbreak. 
Misinformation falsely claiming the coronavirus is a bioweapon has circulated since English-language reports of the outbreak began circulating in January. Depending on which internet rabbit hole you fall down, the coronavirus was created by the Chinese government, is part of a human depopulation scheme by former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates, or stemmed from a tainted batch of children’s blood that the world’s celebrities drink to stay young.
Another article says that anti-vaxxers (people who oppose vaccinations) are fighting everything that is being done to stop the virus:
What is about to unfold over the next few weeks is a test to see how well we have assimilated the government’s lessons in compliance, fear, and police state tactics; a test to see how quickly we’ll march in lockstep with the government’s dictates, no questions asked; and a test to see how little resistance we offer up to the government’s power grabs when made in the name of national security.
It's difficult to tell how many people actually believe the conspiracy theories, but it seemed clear to me when I went out to buy groceries yesterday that there are a lot of Americans are not going to wear face masks just because government scientists recommend it.  And I'd bet that the vast majority of them are Republicans who also do not believe in Climate Change.  In a podcast I listened to the other day, a scientist said that conspiracy theorists do not care about facts, so there is no point in trying to change their minds by presenting them with more facts.  I learned that lesson very well when I was investigating the anthrax attacks of 2001.

I've been referring to this as being "interesting times," but I think a better term is "unusual times."  I don't think anyone alive today has ever seen times like these, much less the times that are ahead of us.  They are going to be "unusual times," so standard routine thinking isn't going to work.  "Social distancing" is an idea that is totally new, and very important.  When I was in Aldi's yesterday, I realized that there are now new rules that I'm going to have to learn.  There are rules against walking down the center of an aisle, and if possible, we should all avoid passing others in an aisle.  We're supposed to keep 6 feet apart, even when the aisles are less than 6 feet wide.  And, it's probably a good idea to avoid picking things up to look them over and then putting them back on the shelf again.  But I don't see any way to avoid it when I want a bag of tossed salad that has the most distant expiration date on it.   Yes, these are indeed unusual times.      

Comments for Wednesday, April 1, 2020, thru Saturday, Apr. 4, 2020:

April 4, 2020 - This morning I made my first Coronavirus face mask.  It was incredibly easy to do, and I'm not sure I really need to work on a better one. 

                    first coronavirus mask

I didn't have any "tea towels" to cut up, but I had a couple short-sleeved white all-cotton shirts that have been in my clothes closet for at least ten years without me ever wearing them.  (When I did, I looked like I'd come from playing polo.)

So, on Friday I washed one of them and then copied instructions from a New York Times article on how to sew a mask.  This morning, when I sat down to begin the project, the first task was to cut a 20-inch by 20-inch square of cloth from the back of the shirt.  As I did that, I noticed that the shoulders on the shirt were already bowl shaped, and that the seams around the back of the shirt and around the bottom edge looked exactly like the straps in the NYT instructions, except that the seams were already sewn.  I cut six seam strips from the shirt, and they were clearly just as good as what was in the instructions.

Then I cut the shoulders out of the shirt and used one of them to create the mask in the images above, folding the extra material over onto the inside, so it is two layers of cloth.  And I used narrow double-sided tape to secure the folds.  Then I wondered if I could just staple the straps onto the mask instead of sewing them on.  I tried that.  It worked just fine.  And, if I want to used the same straps on a different mask, they will be a lot easier to detach.  I have a staple remover. 

So, I have a Coronavirus mask that I used when I went out shopping for groceries this afternoon.  And I didn't do any sewing at all.

I stopped at Walmart, Aldi and Kroger.  I'd say that about 5% of the other people at those stores were also wearing masks.  There was one serious problem with the mask, however, and it's evidently a problem with all such masks: my eyeglasses kept fogging up when I breathed.  As a result, much of time time I shopped without my glasses.  When I returned home, a little research indicated that there is a simple solution to the problem: Wash the glasses with soapy water and dry with a soft tissue before using the mask.  I just tried that here at home.  It seemed to work.  Live and learn.

April 3, 2020
- Hmm.  I think I may have turned a corner of some kind.  When I woke up this morning, instead of coming up with something new puzzle or new realization about centrifuges, light clocks or radar guns, my subconscious had devised a way to make a cloth mask for Coronavirus protection.  It involved a handkerchief and the elastic from a pair of Jockey shorts.  My conscious mind wasn't even aware that it was something I should be thinking about.

When I got up and watched the morning news, I saw that everyone now seems on the verge of recommending that everyone wear a mask when going out in public, such as to a grocery store.  It's probably something I should have done a week ago, but people on the news kept saying that it wasn't a good idea.  Evidently that was because they didn't want everyone buying professional masks and leaving none available for health care workers.  It may also be because wearing such a mask gives the wearer a false sense of security.  Whatever the reasons, those reasons seem to be fading away.  So, the next time I go to a grocery store, I'll be wearing a home-made mask.  

Looking the subject up on the Internet, I found just about every web site calls them DIY masks.  I looked up "DIY" and found it means "Do It Yourself."  Duh!

It also appears that the best material to use is a "tea towel."  I had to look that one up, too.  It turns out to be what most people call a "dish towel."

It seems that the best way to hold a mask in place is probably by tying the strings behind your head, instead of having loops that hook around the ears, particularly if you wear glasses which also hook around your ears.  I couldn't recall the last time I tied a bow-knot behind my head or behind my back, but I tried it and found it's easy to do. 

So, it seems that my next project will be to make a face mask that is not just a flat piece of cloth like a folded handkerchief, but will be bowl shaped so that it will fit better over my nose and chin.  And, if I find I need white shoestrings for the straps, instead of taking them off my gym shoes, I can use package-wrapping string for the first mask and use the mask that way to go to Walmart to buy white shoestrings.  And since I have only one "tea towel," I'll have to buy one of those, too, in order to make a "proper" mask.

Yes, these are certainly interesting times. 

April 2, 2020
- I forgot to do my monthly computer file backups yesterday.  So, I did them this morning.  But how did I forget?  It must be because these days one day is the same as almost every other day.  You really have to force yourself to remember when it is time to do something.  And, as I look around for things to occupy my time, it's easy to get caught up in that and forget what I should be doing.  Yesterday I discovered some podcasts that were very interesting, so I had to download a bunch of them.  But Google or Microsoft changed something recently which often causes it to take a long time to download an MP3 file.  Then I figured out a way to speed things up, but I still wasted a lot of time.

I downloaded a bunch of podcasts from the Big Picture Science web site that appear to be worth listening to.  Then I downloaded a larger bunch from a web site called "WTF with Marc Maron."  If you can get past all the profanity that Maron uses to start his show, the interviews he does can be very interesting.  The first one I listened to, an interview with Dan Aykroyd, was fascinating.  There are probably a lot more podcast web sites that I'm not even aware of.  When I get the time, I plan to search for more and maybe create a directory of some kind.

Meanwhile, Stephen Colbert is back with "A Tonight Show," broadcasting new shows which he is televising from his home, with guest stars who also appear from their homes.  The Monday night show with John Oliver was hilarious, as was the Tuesday night show with Daniel Radcliffe.  And I found that "The Daily Social Distancing Show" with Trevor Noah is also being broadcast from home.  I stopped watching "The Daily Show" years ago, but Monday and Tuesday nights' shows were terrific.  On Monday's program he showed Trump explaining things in a way I hadn't seen before:

The other thing that's nice and the one thing that has come out, and I learned this, again, it was reaffirmed by President Xi last night in my conversation, the young people are really, this is an incredible phenomenon, but they are attacked, successfully attacked to a much lesser extent by this pandemic, by this disease.  This whatever they want to call it. You call it a germ, you can call it a flu, you can call it a virus. You know, you can call it many different names. I'm not sure anybody even knows what it is, but the children do very well.
Isn't it nice to have a President who understands the situation so well?

Meanwhile, I'm also discovering a lot of TV shows that I wasn't even aware of, which are available to me "On Demand." 

And the weather is turning nice.  The forecast is for temperatures in the 50's with mostly sunny skies for the next full week, maybe even getting into the 60s.  So, I'll be able to do a daily walk for exercise.  I could walk north or west in residential areas, but I much prefer to walk through empty parking lots of the strip malls to the south of me.  During yesterday's walk I found that Hobby Lobby is now closed, with a sign on the doors that says it is to be in agreement with local laws regarding the Coronavirus pandemic.  The pet store is open, since it is probably essential for pets.  The door is locked, but they have a person inside who looks you over before unlocking the door for you.   Interesting times.

Meanwhile, I awoke this morning thinking about "light clocks." 

light clock explanation

I decided I need to track down who dreamed up the idea of light clocks.  Was it Einstein, or was it someone trying to explain Einstein's theories in a way that would have made no sense to Einstein?   I thought I wrote something about light clocks long ago, but I haven't been able to find it.  Ah! I just remembered one place where I wrote about it.  It was on my blog almost 4 years ago.  

Since there doesn't seem like any possibility of borrowing a "Type-1" radar gun while the Coronavirus pandemic is raging, maybe some research into "light clocks" will prove interesting.  Maybe.  Sigh.      


© 2020 by Ed Lake