May 07, 2007

Keep hope alive

Instead of updating this post, let me instead direct you this article. Excerpt:

Cold fusion, the ability to generate nuclear power at room temperatures, has proven to be a highly elusive feat. In fact, it is considered by many experts to be a mere pipe dream -- a potentially unlimited source of clean energy that remains tantalizing, but so far unattainable.

However, a recently published academic paper from the Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR) in San Diego throws cold water on skeptics of cold fusion. Appearing in the respected journal Naturwissenschaften, which counts Albert Einstein among its distinguished authors, the article claims that Spawar scientists Stanislaw Szpak and Pamela Mosier-Boss have achieved a low energy nuclear reaction (LENR) that can be replicated and verified by the scientific community.

And that's been the rub for the last 18 years. No one has been able to reproduce on any type of consistent basis what Pons and Fleischman reported to have achieved. Now, apparently, the test appears to be one which can easily be verified or disproved. If true, my career could take an interesting turn over the next few years.

Hat tip to McQ.

Posted by: Physics Geek at 12:47 PM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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May 04, 2007

Calling all geeks

I guess what's scary is that I figured out the number in my head without really thinking about it.


Posted by: Physics Geek at 02:25 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
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Using art masters to improve your photographs

I've used the auto-adjust features of my photo editing software. I've even massaged the colors manually. Sometimes though, I just can't get the darned thing to look right. Here's an interesting solution, assuming that you possess Photoshop:

Adjusting your photographs to get the color 'just right' can be a chore. Think about this: The Old Masters of painting spent years of their lives learning about color. Why let all their effort go to waste on the walls of some museum when it could be used to give you a hand with color correction?

When Photoshop entered the CS series it included a new tool called 'Match Color.' This tools was made so that you could match a series of photos to one another.

But there is another thing you can do with 'Match Color' that is much cooler: You can match the colors in your photos to those in famous paintings.

I keep a directory of about 30 of my favorite paintings and anytime I need to do color correction, I just scan through them to find the one that gives the photo I'm working on the best look.

This technique can be used in other ways. For example, use the color from a scanned-in 1970's Kodachrome snapshot to give a recent photo a vintage look. Need to make a picture more menacing? Use the color from a picture of a storm.

Detailed instructions are there. Click the extended entry to see a few examples/results. more...

Posted by: Physics Geek at 10:42 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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