June 17th, 2005

krazy koati

Drip drip drop

A little bit from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute official newsletter has this exciting lead for Rensselaer Experiment Finds Water Molecules Are Always H2O: Researchers at Rensselaer and Ben-Gurion University in Israel have published results of a new experiment that found water molecules are made up of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom, even during very short time intervals. Glad we have that cleared up.

Without the glibness, the experiment examined a report of a neutron scattering anomaly suggesting water acted as if it sometimes lost half a hydrogen. I'm not clear exactly what H1.5O would mean, but I'm just reading the news summary of the refutation. Water's such a freakish molecule you probably can't come up with an idea goofy enough for it not to be true anyway.

In spam, ``Bureaucratic information, The Ottawa Political Guide,'' slipped through the Bayesian filter, apparently because bureaucracies and Canadian politics are not considered likely selling points. This success implies a future in which, to get through filters, spammers must resort to boring word combinations, so that perhaps by 2008 my e-mailbox will be filled with offers for ``Oregon dentist conventions'' and ``Cheddar reviewer sociology'' and ``Pancake flippers.'' I can't wait.

Trivia: Eight anomalies were recorded in the Command and Service Modules during the flight of Apollo 8. Source: What Made Apollo a Success?, Introduction by George Low, NASA SP-287.

Currently Reading: World History, 1815-1920, Eduard Fueter. (Somehow, the American Civil War has resulted in my Brazil being at war with Italy, which holds Southern California due to spinoffs of the French invasion of Mexico. I was briefly at war with France, but they were happy to call it off on the grounds it was ridiculous we were fighting over a war of the allies of our allies. Italy's more stubborn; I think they're overcompensating.)