Archive: February 5, 2020

<<< February 2, 2020


February 6, 2020 >>>


Wednesday,  02/05/20  10:18 PM

Whew, I've been traveling, and while I was out there was a bit of a fiasco in Iowa, our President gave quite a speech, and he was acquitted of impeachment.  (A foregone conclusion because it takes a 2/3 supermajority and that was never going to happen, so why do it?)  Oh, and perhaps not coincidentally, he is now more popular than his predecessor.  CNN says Democrats made a mistake by impeaching Trump.  So it would appear...

What is the Speaker of the House doing here?  Tearing up the speech?  Well that's certainly a classy move, my goodness.

Oh, did you know?  Our form of government is not a democracy, it's a constitutional republic, and there's good reason for this.

But meanwhile, a bunch of other stuff is happening too...

This is so great.  Not clear what happened yet in Iowa, but seems plausible... 

SpaceX's first NASA astronaut launch closer than ever as spacecraft and rocket near Florida.  "After Crew Dragon arrives, SpaceX will have all the hardware on hand and ready for its first NASA astronaut launch – arguably the single most important mission in the company’s history."  Excellent. 

The Navy is arming nuclear subs with Lasers.  No one knows why.  Actually Glenn Reynolds knows: "This is very simple. If you have lasers and you have a thing that can power lasers, then you put lasers on the thing."  Of course. 

I almost hate to mention this because I hope they don't become too popular (and I know how many of you are reading this :), but I love JSX.  This little airline flies from Burbank to Oakland and Phoenix in cute little jets from hangers on the other side of the airport and there's no lines, no taking off your shoes and jackets, and it's just great.  And it doesn't even cost more. 

xkcd: Satellite.  So great. 

Meanwhile: NASA solar probe smashes two wild records as it approaches the sun.  Fastest human-made object (153,454mph) and closest object to the sun (11.6M miles).  I love that the article calls this "cool science" :) 

Wow, Apple Watch outsold the entire Swiss watch industry in 2019.  Somehow I've avoided owning one.  Too many people have them already :)



two fuse puzzle

Wednesday,  02/05/20  11:24 PM

Unrelated to three dog night :)

The other day I asked: "Imagine that you're making a magic potion. You're a wizard with a long beard. But - the potion only works if you wait exactly 45 minutes before you stir it. If you stir it before or after the potion's totally ruined. You don't have a smartphone. You don't have a watch. You don't have any kind of time measuring device. What you have is two fuses of irregular consistency. The one thing you know for a fact is that it takes an hour for each of these fuses to burn from one end to the other. How do you use these to measure exactly 45 minutes?"

  • Ignore that you're a wizard with a long beard.
  • Take the first fuse, and light both ends.  At the same time light one end of the second fuse.
  • After exactly 30 minutes, the flames from the two ends of the first fuse will meet and the fuse will go out.
  • At that moment, light the other end of the second fuse.
  • After exactly 15 more minutes, the flames from the two ends of the second fuse will meet and the fuse will go out.
  • Poof!  Time to stir the potion.



Return to the archive.