Posts in the “science” category

“He has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me”

“He has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion."

~ Stephen Hawking (1/8/1942 to 3/14/2018), in regards to Albert Einstein (3/14/1879 to 4/18/1955)


The Human Occupied Vehicle named Alvin

Yesterday a nurse told me about a Human Occupied Vehicle named Alvin. which, among many other things, made twelve voyages to the Titanic. You can read the basics here, and more here at

A quote from the first article: “Currently rated to 4,500m, which gives researchers in-person access to about 2/3 of the ocean floor, the most recent upgrade increased the depth rating of many of the vehicle’s systems, making it just steps away from having a depth rating of 6,500m, or approximately 98% of the seafloor.”

A story about a black-hole merger

“About 1.1 billion years ago, two black holes coalesced. They had danced around each other for billions of years, losing energy and swinging closer, until they could no longer resist each other's embrace. Spiraling in, they merged, and released a quaking shout of gravitational waves that echoed across the cosmos.”

Phil Plait on has a nice story about a black-hole merger.

That’s quite an illusion

The Milky Way is moving at over half a million miles per hour. (In the time it took me to type that, we sailed about 1,500 miles through the Universe.)

Inside the Milky Way, the Earth revolves around the Sun at 66,600 mph.

The Earth rotates around its axis at about 1,040 mph (depending on your latitude).

And yet, somehow I feel like I’m sitting perfectly still in this chair.

That’s quite an illusion.