martes, 25 de enero de 2011
domingo, 23 de enero de 2011
L’Uruguay, officiellement República Oriental del Uruguay, est un pays d’Amérique du Sud situé au sud du Brésil et à l’est de l’Argentine, dont il est séparé par le fleuve Uruguay qui lui a donné son nom. L'Uruguay a une superficie totale de 176 220 km² pour une population de 3 477 770 habitants.
La langue nationale est le castillan, fortement influencée par le rioplatense et par le portugais, d'ailleurs à la frontière avec le Brésil, les locaux parlent un Portunhol(ou Portuñol) riverense, mélange de portugais et de castillan.
L'Uruguay a donné au portugais un statut égal à l'espagnol/castillan dans son système éducatif le long de la frontière nord avec le Brésil. Dans le reste du pays, il est enseigné comme une matière obligatoire à compter de la 6.
Sa capitale est Montevideo, qui est également la plus grande ville du pays avec près de 1 500 000 habitants. Elle est considérée comme la ville d'Amérique Latine où la qualité de vie est la plus élevée, et fait partie des 30 villes les plus sûres du monde.
L'Uruguay est le pays le plus proche culturellement de l'Argentine, pays frère pour beaucoup d'Uruguayens. Le mode de vie européen y est bien plus développé que dans les autres pays latino-américains.
viernes, 21 de enero de 2011
miércoles, 19 de enero de 2011
''Lo que con medida puede ser delicioso en exceso te convierte en vicioso''
¿Qué es?... Respuesta: ¡…el internet! (Press here to see image)..
Siga las instrucciones
según se indica. Repase su trabajo diariamente por lo menos durante 10 o 15 minutos y los apuntes de su cuaderno; busque en el diccionario las palabras que no entienda. De ser posible repase con diferentes miembros de su familia, vecinos, compañeros de trabajo, tanto en persona como por teléfono (tarea a distancia).
a) Seleccionar un texto en Inglés que abarque 1 página completa.
b) Pegar el texto en una hoja en blanco en Word e imprimirlo.
c) Subrayar 20 palabras que entienda y formar alfabeticamente una columna..
d) Hacer una segunda columna a la derecha con los significados.
e) En una tercer columna escribir una frase breve en inglés.
a) Seleccionar un texto en Inglés que abarque 1 página completa.
b) Pegar el texto en una hoja en blanco en Word e imprimirlo.
c) Subrayar 10 oraciones que entienda y forman una columna.
d) Busque en el diccionario las palabras que no entienda.
d) Debajo de este primer grupo traducir todas las oraciones.
Repita y alterne estos ejercicios los siguientes dias de cada semana.
Además, consiga con sus conocidos dos libros de texto de la materia de Inglés. Uno será para donación en su salón con su instructor de inglés (o sea, yo). El otro es para que lo lea diariamente por 15 minutos en su casa al despertar y antes de dormir.
Se sorprenderá de los resultados al ver cómo se desempeña con soltura durante la hora de la clase cada sábado.
Que la pasen muy bien, y recuerden que cada dia de clase hay que entegar su tarea. Es una hoja impresa completa con el tamaño de texto de 8 puntos. Por la parte trasera que está en blanco deberán escribir a mano su trabajo según las indicaciones. Pueden ayudarse entre sí, pero es una hoja por cada alumno, no por grupo.
Para buscar más textos visite estos enlaces de nuestra red gratuita de tareas bilingües.
Non-profit Homework Network * Red de tareas no lucrativa
Bilingual Newspaper * B Planet News * Cleanweb Vox * Decimvs Vox *Cleanweb Bs
Today in History Vox * Conversation Club * The Twin Reporter Vox * Biographies
lunes, 17 de enero de 2011
The Critical Period Hypothesis
The crticial period hypothesis in essence contends that the ability to learn a language is limited to the years before puberty after which, as a result of neurological changes in the brain (see the impact of neglect on neurological development), the ability is lost.
She [Genie] was a very communicative person. But, despite trying, she never mastered the rules of grammar, never could use the little pieces — the word endings, for instance. She had a clear semantic ability but could not learn syntax. Rymer, Genie: A Scientific Tragedy.
Feral Children and the Critical Period
Although the critical period hypothesis was hotly debated for some years, there is now compelling evidence — including the evidence from feral, confined and isolated children — that, unless they are exposed to language in the early years of life, humans lose much of their innate ability to learn a language, and especially its grammatical system. However, read on…
Modern Feral Children
Even if they've missed out on the critical period for language acquisition (such as Genie), feral children can be taught a few words, and very simple grammatical constructions. However, feral children don't provide the best evidence in support of the critical period hypothesis (which is, any case, now generally accepted), partly because they may have been abandoned because of subnormality (Victor) or suffered emotional and physical trauma (Genie) that would affect their learning capacity.
Language acquisition after return to civilisation
The ability of feral children to learn language on their return to human society is very varied. For most feral children from history, we don't have enough information to judge exactly how much language, if any, they might have been able to learn, were they taught properly. For some children, the historical records don't even mention whether or not they could talk when they were found, presumably because the assumption is that they clearly wouldn't have been able to.
Some children (see Isabelle) acquire normal language ability, but only if found before the onset of puberty. Her progress was dramatic: in two years she covered the stages of learning that usually take six years. Others, such as Memmie LeBlanc), also learnt to speak normally, but we suppose that they could speak before their period of isolation.
…...the second claim ([that Genie could produce] 'no auxiliary forms') is simply false. Jones, Contradictions and Unanswered Questions in the Genie Case.
A grammatical puzzle
But the evidence from more recently-discovered children such as Genie is confusing. Although Genie is often quoted as evidence that there is a critical period, in fact, in Genie: A Pyscholingustic Study by Susan Curtiss, we read that Genie did start, and continue, to acquire gramatical ability.
Unfortunately, Genie's language regressed after legal and financial considerations put a stop to the nurturing scientific environment she enjoyed for the first several years after her release. But the original evidence is also thrown into further confusion by later publications about Genie, which suggest she acquired little or no grammatical capabilities: for more on this, you can read Peter Jones's paper Contradictions And Unanswered Questions In The Genie Case online.
A Sensitive Period for Language Acquisition
In A Theory of Neurolinguistic Development, John L Locke provides us with a possible answer to this puzzle. He suggests the term sensitive period rather than critical period: a period which is optimal for "tuning" that part of the brain best suited to the acquisition of grammatical analysis. However, even after this period, the considerable adaptability of the brain means all is not lost: other, less optimal, parts of the brain are pressed into service, and some grammatical abilities can be acquired, albeit slowly.
Further reading online
Read Steven Pinker online on the subject of language acquisition in Language Acquisition, a chapter of An Invitation to Cognitive Science.
There's a chapter in Roger Brown's Words and Things on the subject of language acquisition in isolated children. See also Speech and the Development of Mental Processes in the Child.
In a little over two months after her first vocalisation she [Isabelle] was putting sentences together. Nine months after that she could identify words and sentences on the printed page, could write well, could add to ten and could retell a story after hearing it. Davis, Human Society.
sábado, 15 de enero de 2011
William Kamkwamba vivía con sus padres en Masitala, una pequeña aldea a 2 horas en camioneta de la capital de Malawi con 50 chozas de adobe, sin agua corriente ni luz, y todas sumidas en la mas absoluta pobreza.
Si te ha interesado esta entrada, no deberías perderte:
-El niño que ha robado la sed a medio millón de africanos.
-Bricolaje con ADN. Un hombre secuencia en su casa parte del genoma de su hija para diagnosticarla
-El hombre que talló por amor 6000 escalones.
jueves, 13 de enero de 2011
I miss Carl Sagan
Sagan's enthusiasm for science and his knack for translating difficult scientific concepts into simple explanations that many can understand, made him a popular figure. He was an ambassador for science, if you will, as he had inspired many people to study science (yours truly included).
Today would've been his 75th birthday, so in honor of the great astronomer, scientist and author, Neatorama presents 10 Neat Facts About Carl Sagan:
READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE * PRESS THIS LINK OR COPY AND PASTE THE ONE ABOVE
martes, 11 de enero de 2011
Dec 2, 2009
PRESS HERE TO GO TO THE ORIGINAL SITE
We must imbibe in them to be active in the affairs of society by being aware on various political and social issues (guilty!). Also, simply following rules like properly crossing the streets or not littering must be observed. One of the best things that I have learned from this subject so far is that a country, for it to have good citizens, must have people who are able to THINK CRITICALLY.
A citizen must know how to weigh the issues that are concerning his country and he can only do that if he has the capacity to think CRITICALLY. One example of this is, a citizen will NOT vote someone just because he's popular or an actor, he will vote someone because of that candidate's platforms. However, to have GOOD CITIZENS who can THINK CRITICALLY, a country must have an EDUCATED PEOPLE. I'm a firm believer that being educated plays a HUGE factor for the development of a human being which in turn affect immensely his cognitive, affective, and psychomotor abilities. Education does not only allow a person to read and write, it also give him the opportunity to THINK. Thus, education paves way for a person to be able to think critically, which in turn make him a good citizen.
Having a PhD does not automatically make a person a critical thinker.
I know people, people who have multiple degrees who are crap when it comes to being good citizens. There are many public officials in the Philippines who are degree holders yet all they do is steal from the people. Those who have access to education sometimes are the ultimate embodiment of corruption and violence. Instead of contributing positively to the country like improving the educational system or making health services free for all, some just waste their talent and intellect to doing negative things!
I just want to say that I'm a firm believer of hope and I know that there MANY Filipinos out there who are good citizens. They know how to follow the law and they also know how to vote wisely. Election is just around the corner and it would be a day in which critical thinking would be very much welcome...
Am I a GOOD CITIZEN? I honestly still have a LONG way to be one!
domingo, 9 de enero de 2011
(Spanish: República Oriental del Uruguay, pronounced , is a country located in the southeastern part of South America. It is home to some 3.3 million people, of whom 1.1 million live in the capital Montevideo and its metropolitan area. An estimated 88% of the population are of European descent.
Uruguay's only land border is with Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, to the north. To the west lies the Uruguay River, to the southwest lies the estuary of Río de la Plata, with Argentina only a short commute across the banks of either of these bodies of water, while to the southeast lies the South Atlantic Ocean. Uruguay is the second smallest country in South America, being larger than only Suriname.
Colonia del Sacramento, one of Uruguay's oldest European settlements, was founded by the Portuguese in 1680. Montevideo was founded by the Spanish in the early 18th century as a military stronghold. Uruguay won its independence in 1825–1828 following a three-way struggle among Spain, Argentina and Brazil. It is a constitutional democracy, where the president fulfills the roles of both head of state and head of government.
The economy is largely based on agriculture (making up 10% of GDP and the most substantial export) and the state sector. According to Transparency International, Uruguay is rated as the least corrupt country in Latin America (along with Chile), with its political and labor conditions being among the freest on the continent.
Uruguay is one of the most economically developed countries in South America, with a high GDP per capita and the 47th highest quality of life in the world.
viernes, 7 de enero de 2011
¿Qué cuentan las ovejas para poder dormir?
¿Por qué para apagar Windows hay que ir al botón de Inicio?
¿Por qué le llaman a nuestro planeta ‘tierra’ siendo este tres cuartas partes de agua?
¿Qué cuentan las ovejas para poder dormir? RESPUESTA: Lobos!
¿Hasta dónde se lavan la cara los calvos?
¿Por qué las ovejas no encogen cuando llueve y los jerseis de lana sí encogen?¿Por qué el zumo de limón está hecho con sabor artificial y el lavavajillas está hecho con limones naturales?
¿Por qué el pan de molde lo hacen cuadrado cuadrado, si el choped, el salami, la mortadela, el chorizo… son redondos?
¿En qué se parecen los hombres a los delfines?
En que se cree que tienen inteligencia pero aún no está demostrado.
¿Cuál es el colmo de?
¿Cual es el colmo de un jorobado? * Estudiar derecho
Encendiendo el ordenador
Mamá, mamá.. mi hermana encendió el ordenador.
Bueno pepito, dejala jugar un rato…
Bueno, si el fuego llega a tu habitación, yo ya te avisé.
¡El como de los colmos!
¿Cual es el colmo de los colmos?
Que un mudo le diga a un sordo: Ese ciego esta viendo al cojo correr!!!
miércoles, 5 de enero de 2011
The teacher and student/small group/class read a story together and aloud. This builds reading comprehension and fluency.
A teacher utilizes introductory discussion about a story before reading. This builds student comprehension and interest in reading.
A teacher reads a text, one sentence at a time, as the student follows along. The student then attempts to imitate or "echo" the teacher. This technique builds fluency and confidence in oral reading skills.
Group Dynamic Reading
In a small group, the teacher and students take turns in reading the text. At first, the children follow what the teacher reads with their fingers. After this, the students read while the teacher listens. This builds oral reading skills and fluency.
A student reads with the assistance of an instructor as it is needed. When an unfamiliar word appears, the instructor either tells the student the word or assists the student in decoding the word. During the story, the teacher stops at certain points and questions the student in order to determine/guide comprehension. This helps build practice in comprehension, decoding, sight word vocabulary, and oral reading.
A student sits on a parent’s or teacher’s lap and listens to high interest stories. The goal of this technique is to build a student’s interest in reading, while creating a good oral reading model. This nurturing environment can be replicated in a story corner or anywhere that the child feels comfortable.
A student chooses a challenging text and listens to the instructor read it. The student then reads the text by him/herself. This process continues until the student can fluently read the text. This method can be woven into many different literacy approaches and adapted to different circumstances. It builds decoding, reading fluency and student confidence.
The teacher reads a text while the student observes and follows along silently. This method helps build reading fluency and comprehension.
Students read silently for a specified period of time. This method builds confidence in reading skills, but should only be used when students are ready.
A student reads along with a tape-recorded passage. Students continue at their own pace while building decoding skills, sight word vocabulary and fluency. It is important to use taped readings that are short in duration (3-4 minutes at the most) and read in phrases to ensure that students do are not lost or confused.
In a small group, students take turns reading a story while an assigned student acts out what is read. This builds interest in reading and may break up the monotony in a lesson.
While a student reads a text aloud, the teacher whispers assistance in the student’s ear as needed. This builds reading fluency and oral reading confidence.
martes, 4 de enero de 2011
Many people know that Pioneer 10 and Pioneer 11 spacecrafts carry metal plaques that carry a message from mankind.
But not many know that it was Carl Sagan, together with Frank Drake (yes, the man who came up with the Drake Equation that attempts to estimate the number of alien civilization in our galaxy), that designed the plaque.
The controversial artwork, which featured a nude man and woman, was drawn by Sagan's then-wife Linda Salzman Sagan.
After the Pioneer Program, NASA put a Golden Record aboard the two Voyager spacecrafts, which included a greeting "Hello from the children of planet Earth."
That was recorded by then six-year-old Nick Sagan, Carl's son.
lunes, 3 de enero de 2011
Every high school physics student knows about Fourier’s Law of Heat Conduction and Hooke’s Law of Elasticity.
But not many know that Joseph Fourier lived inside a wooden box in his old age.
Or that Robert Hooke’s arch-nemesis, Isaac Newton, hated him so much that he had Hooke’s portrait removed from the Royal Society and tried to have his papers burned. Imagine how much fun science class would’ve been, had these been taught along side all those equations and formulas.
Well, now you can read about the interesting stuff that your school textbooks didn‘t bother to include. In his latest book, Archimedes to Hawking: Laws of Science and the Great Minds Behind Them, Cliff Pickover takes some 40 eponymous laws of physics and explains the life of the scientists whom these laws are named after. The book is far from a dry listing of scientific formulas - actually, it’s full of quirky trivia and nifty facts about some of the world’s greatest scientists.
Cliff has graciously allowed us to take samples from the book for this article and generously offer personalized copies of the book to 3 lucky Neatorama readers (see below for details).
So, if you didn’t know that Archimedes sometimes sent his colleagues false theorems in order to trap them when they stole his ideas, or that Daniel Bernoulli‘s father threw him out for winning a science competition, then this Neatorama post is for you. Behold, the 5 Scientific Laws and the Scientists Behind Them (no complicated math, we promise!)
1. Archimedes’ Principle of Buoyancy
The Law: According to Archimedes’ principle, a body wholly or partially submerged in liquid is buoyed up by a force equal to the weight of the displaced liquid. This buoyant force depends on the density of the liquid and the volume of the object, but not its shape.
The law seems simple, but it is actually not intuitive that objects with equal volume experience the same buoyant force when held under water: cubes made of cork and lead would experience the same buoyant force, yet would have completely different behavior. This is because the different ratios of buoyant force to object weights.
Archimedes’ Principle of Buoyancy has many applications, including determining the pressure of a liquid as a function of depth. It helps us understand how floatation works and is one of the founding principles of hydrostatics.
The Famous Legend Behind the Law: One day, King Hieron II of Syracuse, Sicily, wanted to find out whether his wreath-shaped crown was actually made from pure gold. He called upon Archimedes to find out (without damaging the crown, say by melting it down). Roman architect and engineer Marcus Vitruvius wrote:
While Archimedes was turning the problem over, he chanced to come to the place of bathing, and there, as he was sitting down in the tub, he noticed that the amount of water which flowed over the tub was equal to the amount by which his body was immersed. This showed him means of solving the problem … In his joy, he leapt out of the tub and, rushing naked toward his home, he cried out with a loud voice that he had found what he sought.
Archimedes was able to obtain the exact volume of the crown by dunking it in water and measuring the displaced water. He then took the weight of the crown and divided it by its volume to get the density of the crown, which turned out to be between that of gold and silver. Archimedes was thus able to show that the wreath was not made out of pure gold (and the royal goldsmith was executed).
Modern scholars suggest that this story was bogus, as it would be unlikely that Archimedes had measuring equipment with sufficient accuracy to detect the difference (plus, he hated to bathe - see below).
The Man Behind the Law: Archimedes of Syracuse (287-212 B.C.), was a Greek geometer and is often regarded as one of the greatest mathematicians and scientists who ever lived. Here are a few things about Archimedes you may not know:
- Plutarch wrote that Archimedes was so obsessed with math that his servants had to force him to bathe, and that while they scrubbed him, he continued to draw geometrical figures on his body!
- Archimedes invented a machine called the Archimedean screw to pump water.
- He also invented a “death ray” weapon using a set of mirrors that focused sunlight on Roman ships, setting them on fire. After many scientists discounted the story as false, David Wallace of MIT actually did the experiment: He had his students build an oak replica of a Roman ship and focused sunlight on it using 127 mirrored tiles from a distance of 30 meters. After ten minutes of exposure, the ship burst into flames!
- When the Romans captured Syracuse in 212 B.C., a Roman soldier came upon the mathematician who was studying a mathematical diagram drawn in the sand. Archimedes was annoyed by the soldier’s interruption, and said “Don’t disturb my circles” before he was killed. Moral of the story: don’t piss off a Roman soldier!
2. Hooke’s Law of Elasticity
The Law: Hooke’s Law of Elasticity states that if an object, such a spring, is elongated by some distance x, then the restoring force F exerted by the object is proportional to x:
The k is a constant called the spring constant if the object is a spring.
The Man Behind the Law: Robert Hooke (1635 - 1702) was an English physicist and polymath. As you can see, Hooke was an ugly man (he was severely disfigured by smallpox). (Photo: Molecular Expressions: Science, Optics and You)
Here are a few things about Hooke you may not know:
- Robert Hooke was a sickly child and wasn’t expected to reach adulthood, so his parents didn’t bother educating him. Left to his own devices, Hooke made mechanical models and clocks.
- He was the first to coin the word “cell” to describe the basic unit of life (he thought that plant cells, when magnified through a microscope, looked like “cellula,” the living quarters of monks).
- Hooke was a busy man: he was the Surveyor to the City of London, helped rebuild the city after the Great Fire in 1666, and even designed the infamous Bethlem Royal Hospital (“Bedlam”) and the Royal College of Physicians.
- In 1672, Hooke criticized Isaac Newton who used a prism to split white light into its various components. Furious at Hooke, Newton had his portraits removed from the Royal Society and even attempted to burn his papers. Hooke mentioned to Newton about a possible inverse-square principle of gravitation, but Newton didn’t credit Hooke when he published Principia Mathematica, saying "Merely because one says something might be so, it does not follow that it has been proved that it is."
- Hooke was interested in the science of respiration, so he had himself placed in a sealed vessel from which air was gradually pumped out. As you can imagine, the experiment was detrimental to Hooke’s health: he damaged his ears and experienced deafness in the process.
- In 2006, the Royal Society purchased a manuscript by Hooke for $1.75 million, in which he wrote 500 pages of notes recorded during Royal Society meetings. In the notes, Hooke castigated Newton and Robert Boyle for stealing his ideas. He also wrote that Dutch microscopist Anton van Leeuwenhoek found "a vast number of small animals in his Excrements which were most abounding when he was troubled with a Looseness and very few or none when he was well."
3. Bernoulli's Law of Fluid Dynamics (Bernoulli's Principle)
The Law: Imagine fluid flowing steadily through a pipe that carries it from the top to the bottom of a hillside. The pressure of the liquid changes along the pipe, and Daniel Bernoulli discovered the law that relates the pressure, flow speed, and height for a fluid flowing in a pipe. Today, this law is written as:
You may not be aware of Bernoulli's Law, but it has numerous applications in real life: Bernoulli's Law is used when designing the Venturi throat, a constricted region in the air passage of a car motor's carburetor that causes a reduction in pressure, and in turn causes fuel vapor to be drawn out of the carburetor bowl.
The design of airplane wings take advantage of the knowledge we gleaned from Bernoulli's Law: these wings are designed to create an area of fast flowing air on its upper surface, which cause pressure near this area to drop and thus pull the wing upward.
Finally, we've all experienced Bernoulli's Law in action: the shower curtain is pulled inward when water first comes out of the shower because the increase in water and air velocity inside the shower causes pressure to drop. The pressure difference between the outside and inside of the curtain causes it to be sucked inward.
The Man Behind the Law: Daniel Bernoulli (1700-1782) was polymath that came from a family of extraordinary Swiss mathematicians. In fact, his father, Johann Bernoulli, and his uncle, Jacob, were famous mathematicians.
Interestingly, both Daniel and his father Johann secretly studied mathematics against the wishes of their respective fathers. Just as Johann's father tried to force him into becoming a merchant, Johann did the same to Daniel. Indeed, Johann had his son's future all mapped out, including whom to marry!
Finally, Daniel told his father that he'd had enough, and both of them came to a truce: Daniel would become a doctor and Johann would personally teach him math.
Here are a few things about Daniel Bernoulli you may not know:
- Johann had always been jealous of Daniel's success. In 1735, after both the father and son tied for first place in a science competition held by the Paris Academy of Sciences, Johann was unable to bear the “shame" of being comparable to his son and threw Daniel out of his house for winning the prize that he felt should've been his alone!
- Daniel published his work on fluid physics in a book titled Hydrodynamica (where we get the word "hydrodynamics" from) in 1734. Johann became jealous of Daniel's work and published his own plagiarized version, Hydraulica … and predated it to 1732 to make it seem that his work appeared before his son's!
- Daniel was a prolific author and wrote on whatever subjects struck his fancy. One of his papers discussed the formula for computing the relationship between the number of oarsmen on a ship and the ship's velocity. In another paper, Daniel wrote what would become the basis of the economic theory of risk aversion and overall happiness gained from goods or services.
4. Dalton's Law of Partial Pressures
The Law: Dalton's Law of Partial Pressures states that the total pressure Pt exerted by a mixture of gases in a container is equal to the sum of the separate pressures that each gases would exert if just that single gas occupied the entire volume of the container.
That may seem trivial, but it's actually one of the more useful gas laws for scientists.
The Man Behind the Law: John Dalton (1766 - 1844) grew in a poor family, was a poor speaker, severely color-blind, and was even considered a crude or simple experimentalist. Yet, he achieved significant professional successes and made great contributions to chemistry, meteorology, and physics.
In the early 19th century, Dalton developed the atomic theory, in which he proposed that each chemical element is composed of atoms of single, unique type and that though these atoms are indestructible, they can combine in simple ratios. For this, many consider Dalton to be the "Father of Chemistry".
Here are a few things about John Dalton you may not know:
- Legend has it that Dalton once bought his mother special stockings for her birthday. The mother, a Quaker woman, was shocked that he would buy her scarlet stockings. Dalton thought that they were blue, and asked his brother … who also saw them as blue! At that point, he realized that both he and his brother were color blind.
- Dalton did the first systematic study of color blindness and wrote the very first paper on the subject. In his honor, color blindness is sometimes called Daltonism.
- Since he was 21, Dalton kept a detailed diary of the weather, and continued to update it until the very day of his death. Dalton was so obsessed with records that he kept meticulous records of hits, misses, and other scores when he played the English game of lawn bowling!
- Dalton never married, saying "My head is too full of triangles, chymical process, and electrical experiments, etc., to think much of marriage."
- After his death, and according to his wishes, one of Dalton's eyes was cut open to determine the cause of his color blindness (Dalton had always thought that it was due to colored fluid inside his eyes - but that turned out not to be the case.) In the 1990s, cellular analysis revealed that the eye lacked the pigment that provides sensitivity to green.
5. Fourier's Law of Heat Conduction
The Law: Fourier's Law of Heat Conduction deals with the transmission of heat in materials. The law states that the heat flux, Q (the flow of heat per unit area and per unit of time), is proportional to the gradient of the temperature difference.
Fourier's Law is used in many diverse areas of science, and it explains why diamonds are cool to the touch (they have high thermal conductivity).
The Man Behind the Law: Jean Baptiste Joseph Fourier (1768 - 1830) was a French mathematicians and Egyptologist.
Here are a few things about Fourier you may not know:
- When he was only 16, Fourier discovered a new proof of Descartes’ rule of signs. His teenage achievement quickly became standard proof. By the age of 21, however, Fourier was in doubt whether he could ever make a significant contribution to mathematics. He wrote to his professor "Yesterday was my 21st birthday, at that age Newton and Pascal had already acquired many claims to immortality." It’s a good thing Fourier carried on!
- Instead of a career in science, young Fourier seriously considered being a priest. Indeed, he arrived at the Benedictine abbey of St. Benoit-sur-Leoire to prepare for his vows, but left when he realized that he only had one true love: mathematics.
- During the French Revolution, Fourier tried to defend scientists like Antoine Lavoisier, the founder of modern chemistry. Appeals to spare Lavoisier’s life was cut short when the judge said “The Republic has no need for geniuses” and he was guillotined. Afterwards, Fourier was thrown in prison but managed to escape death when the political climate changed.
- In his work on heat propagation in thin sheets of material, Fourier invented a very useful mathematical tool that would later become known as the Fourier Series. Here, Fourier showed that any periodic function can be represented by a sum of simple sine and cosine oscillating functions.
- Fourier accompanied Napoleon to Egypt. When he returned, Fourier had a strange medical condition: he was always cold and had to wear several overcoats, even in the heat of summer. It’s ironic to think that though he was an expert in heat transfer, Fourier was not good at regulating his own body heat!
- Global warming? Blame Fourier - he came up with the idea that the atmosphere acts as a “translucent dome,” which like a lid of a pot, absorbs some of the heat of the Sun and reradiates it downward to Earth.
- During his last months, Fourier’s body was so frail that he would live inside a wooden box with holes cut out for his head and arms. This “living coffin” would keep his body upright and let him work on his correspondence!
The article above is but a small selection of the amazing trivia and fascinating stories about some of the greatest names in science. If you love science, or would like to instill the love of science to your children, pick up Cliff Pickover's Archimedes to Hawking: Laws of Science and the Great Minds Behind Them. You won't be disappointed
Links: Archimedes to Hawking Amazon page The book's website Cliff's website
On a personal note, this article took way longer than I thought (and I didn't even get to Stephen Hawking!) ... because I ended up reading Cliff's book from cover to cover! It was definitely an interesting read.
Now, like I mentioned above, Cliff has generously offered free copies of Archimedes to Hawking to Neatorama readers with the most interesting experience with science or funny personal story about a science class ... Write yours in the comment section; the best three will win a free personalized copy of Cliff's book (so make it good!)
domingo, 2 de enero de 2011
sábado, 1 de enero de 2011
The cruise business is on the up and up, with new routes, ships and style concepts constantly appearing. The growth of specialist cruises and trend for in-house spas are two reasons for the rise in popularity. And then there's the more sobering point that in an increasingly unpredictable world ship routes are easier and cheaper to change than airborne ones.